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Photography Magazine

Stepping Back

Rooms with a View


We stand and stare out over the water to the cabins on the other side of the inlet. Reality dawns; there’s ours, accessible only by boat. Heading out in the darkness before dawn is going to be just that little bit more difficult. I wonder how practical staying here is going to be, but then check my negativity. I know from long experience how misleading first impressions can be. Staying in this log cabin on the shore of a lake in north Ontario will certainly be different, an adventure no less, and a quintessentially Canadian one at that. Maybe we can turn what now seems an inconvenience into an advantage; it wouldn’t be for the first time.

I reckon I spend about half my life on the move. Considering just how long I’ve been chasing the light now, that all adds up to a lot of nights in a lot of hotels, inns, hostels, cabins, lodges, B&Bs, guesthouses and tents around the world. Most stays have been instantly forgettable; nights in utilitarian hotels such as Premier Inns are rarely uplifting experiences. Such establishments serve a purpose, but they do make me feel like a battery hen. I always seem to end up in a hot, stuffy prison cell that smells of stale fags, next door to a meeting of local drug dealers. The view out of the window-that-doesn’t-open over the car park towards the local Kwik-Fit doesn’t exactly inspire, and what is that yellow rubbery stuff kept warm for hours under the lights at the breakfast buffet supposed to be – scrambled eggs? I reckon we could insulate our loft with it. Too many nights in such hotels stifle the soul.

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