The best day ever

Let me go back 12 years and share a story about my best day ever.

My girlfriend and I saved for a year and went to Cape Verde for the Summer.

We visited several islands and ended up in Santo Antão.

 

05

Our guide there, Danny Careca (Careca means bald-head), took us to a little village, on the island, called Janela (Window).

We were invited to eat some rice with red beans and to drink, of course, Grogue. Grogue is the powerful local moonshine.

 

Myself and Danny Careca, on the back, always flirting.

Myself, 12 years ago, and Danny Careca, in the background, always flirting.

01

After the fourth of fifth glass of Grogue, me and my girlfriend decided to step outside for a while to get some fresh ocean air.

Some kids saw my camera and they started asking me to take their picture. We managed to organize a line and, one by one, they placed themselves in front of the camera and stroke a pose.

 

1

 

2
After the third or fourth photograph, and the Grogue kicking in, I felt too tipsy to stand so I sat down on a rock. My girlfriend sat next to me and I proposed to her on that moment.

No, it was not the “booze talking”. It was the perfect setting and the perfect moment.

She said yes and we kissed. The kids started to giggle and saying: “That’s gross! Let’s go on with the pictures!”

We went back to the pictures and one last kid was too shy to have his picture taken.

All the other kids went up to him to cheer him up. One buttoned his shirt all the way up and another one dusted his clothes the best he could.

According to them he was now ready. And he was indeed.

3

The whole moment, the whole situation, was moving and heart warming.

My future wife was sitting next to me, the Sun was setting, I was in Africa, had a camera with me, the kids were happy… everything was in the right place. It was the most beautiful and peaceful moment of my life. It was the best day.

 

03

———–

My first post on Cooking Film was about these shots and the first comment was from a lady “asking” me if the kids parents knew I was posting their picture on the internet.

Well… These photographs are about happiness, about love, about kindness, about pride, about authenticity, about the good things in life, the magical ones.

These pictures are also about me and who I am.

They are my best shots ever!
Not because they are any good but because they portrait beautiful, proud and happy kids. I feel I’ve captured that somehow… to make them justice.

The kid’s parents were there, having fun with all of us. As soon as I got home I sent prints to Danny Careca and I would love to know where they are and what they are doing now.

I will always choose to believe that, no matter how fucked up this world might be, good will always prevail. I choose to believe I share my stories and pictures with good people. That lady, of the comment, is as evil as the ones she seem so afraid of.

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11 comments
  1. Great post with a pertinent message, the sentiment is so very true, especially in relation to the last paragraph.

    Cheers, Jason.

  2. jezzafox said:

    Great photographs and a lovely account to accompany them.

  3. This post just brought a smile to my face – so true and so pure. It is the essence of photography!

    • I feel honored and embarrassed my friend. Thank you for your kind words.

  4. thank you for this post; your joy from that time is infectious and reading this has given me some moments of peace xxx

    • My dear, dear J.
      There are some… unforgettable moments in our lives and we must treasure them.

      This may sound like a naive thing to say but we should keep the good memories and leave the rest behind.

      You are a very dear friend.

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