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  • Writer's picturePaul Cotter

Holding Hands (Part Two)

Two silhouetted figures holding hands and watching the sunset on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia

At the end of our Nova Scotia trip, we drove along the coast of Cape Breton Island, looking to find a scenic spot to catch a sunset. I set up my tripod and shot a few frames as the sun was going down – but I was underwhelmed with the results. It was a cloudless night, which produced a sunset that was fairly "meh."

Before calling it quits, we decided to try one more shot – this time adding a touch of human interest by including our silhouetted shapes looking out across the water. Shot using a remote control shutter release, this was my favorite image of the night, and one of my favorites from the whole trip.

To me, this is more than just another sunset photo. It’s a story: the story of love and friendship ... standing by each other’s side and watching the events of our lives unfold.

My wife and I have been holding hands since we were 16 years old. In the 50 years that have passed, we’ve seen wars and pandemics … we’ve seen economic boom times and market crashes … we've lived in four different states ... we’ve raised two children, watched them grow, and now we’re watching our two beautiful little granddaughters grow. And through all the changes, joys and inevitable ups and downs of life, we’ve stood together.

That's what I think of when I see us holding hands and watching the sunset – a sunset that was unremarkable and ordinary in itself, but was totally memorable because we watched it together at the end of our trip.

Photographer’s Footnote: If you’d like to see a gallery of 56 selected photos from our Nova Scotia journey, click here.


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