July 2015

Goodbyes are never easy.

When I attended summer camp as a child, I always dreaded Saturday morning when my parents would drive through the camp entrance to pick me up. I always cried because I knew as soon as I passed camp's rusted gates I was leaving my special place; I was leaving a community of people that encouraged me to grow, learn, and be the best version of myself.

My time in the Upper Valley was a lot like my time at summer camp. I grew exponentially. I learned how to live alone, how to meet people and find stories, how to make better photographs. But most importantly I learned how to be the best version of myself.

That doesn't mean it wasn't hard. January, February, and March (and maybe even a bit of April) were bitterly cold, a cold that my Southern blood could barely handle. I was painfully lonely. Some days I felt like all I did was work, eat and sleep. But through these challenges I grew. I grew and grew.

The Upper Valley is a special place. It's now my special place.

So saying goodbye isn't easy. It never is.

Here are some of my favorite images from my final few weeks at the Valley News.