Man with a tin bath

Man_with_tin_bath_on_his_backMy friend Ann lives in Woodlands, on the outskirts of Lusaka. From the middle of town, it’s a good hour’s walk along Independence Avenue. Laid out by the colonial government, with two lanes for traffic each way, the road was originally called Ridgeway. Its best feature is the wide central reservation. Mature Flamboyant trees provide shade and the pavement in the middle feels safe for walking.

Heading towards Woodlands one recent Sunday, I’d gone out without a camera. I was playing the photographer’s version of Russian roulette. Often I draw a blank, but this time I cursed myself. Ahead of me, a young man had emerged from a side road, carrying a tin bath on his back.

Before moving to Zambia I’d always shot on film, so for me a phone camera isn’t a natural choice. In my frustration, I forgot that I had one in my pocket. But God or fate was kind that day. The man and I were heading the same way and he was still in front of me when I came to my senses.

I had time to take two pictures with my phone, before we went our separate ways. At only 4 megabytes each, the files are small, but they’re much better than nothing. I’m going to have one of the pictures printed and framed, as a reminder that the best camera is the one that you’ve got with you.

What do you think about mobile phone photography? Have you been converted or do you think it will always be second best?

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2 Responses to “Man with a tin bath”
  1. susan hayek-kent says:
    • Richard Alton says:

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