In 1998, I was a few years into the Location Scouting thing, when a project asked me to find a country road surrounded by crops. The creative was about a working guy taking a break from his busy work day but still staying in touch via his cell phone. Back then, this was an introduction to a new revolution.
I set out on a search by driving the many country roads in the area. Some time around day two, as I came over a dirt road hill, there it was, a lone tree near the side of road, greeting me. I’ll admit, it spoke to me. While a tree wasn’t in the storyboard per se, I always try to “plus them” by finding better or something slightly different. I have to show the client this. To my surprise and joy, the client loved it.
A day was selected a few weeks later and we shot the spot near the tree. We ate lunch that day under the tree. And then it was over, like so many one-time locations, we wrapped and left to never return.
Ten years later, I was in the area and a feeling of rediscovery came over me. “I think I’ll go visit.” There was my old friend the tree, still standing as proud as possible – but leafless in the middle of summer. Sadly, the weather and wind and years had finally caught up. My old friend the lone tree had died.
I parked and paused and flash-backed to the day of our shoot. I relished and smiled of similar days. I got out and wandered toward him. I laid my hands on his dry aged skin. “Hello old friend. We go way back, you and I. Do you remember that day? We blocked the road, we brought in a special crane and decent sized crew – for you. Yeah, the Actor did damage the car. We laugh about it now. And the phone, oh boy what they do with a phone today. You still look good. I don’t care what they say. Thank you for stopping me that day.”
He had his hey days. Proud to the end. My respects to you sir. Good-bye old friend.
Photos and words COPYRIGHT Jamie Vesay 2011-2012 ANY USE requires permission.