I trudged up Boston’s Beacon Hill during Juno, the blizzard that dumped over two feet of snow on the city. I was hoping the neighborhood’s elevation and the narrow streets lined with snowbound cars might make for some interesting pictures for the bostonherald.com‘s storm coverage. What I found there caught me by surprise. As I poked around trying to capture the misery of residents coping with all the snow, I kept seeing people carrying their skis and snowboards. Initially I thought they were all heading to some bus waiting to take them up to ski country which of course didn’t make any sense with a travel ban still in effect. It wasn’t until a kid flew by me on a snowboard, landed, and continued to shred down the middle of the street that I realized Bostonians were taking advantage of the fresh powder on their doorsteps. It’s not unusual to see cross-country skiers traversing the city during a snowstorm, but alpine skiers and snowboarders carving turns in the middle of the street was a unique spectacle.
Chaos in Cambridge – Mohsen Haridi of Brookline, Mass., waits for police to take his driver’s information at the scene of an accident during a power outage in Cambridge, Mass. on Thursday, November 29, 2012. After finishing up my second library assignment of the day, a first for me, I got the call to head to Cambridge which was experiencing a power outage. As I turned the corner from Newbury Street onto Mass. Ave., I quickly realized the severity of the blackout. The bridge into Cambridge was jammed, all I could see was a stagnant row of headlights on Memorial Drive and all the MIT buildings were unlit. The power outage hit at the worst possible time creating bedlam in the city I try to avoid during the evening rush hour. Struggling to make pictures as I gradually crossed the Charles River, I quickly ditched my car and started shooting police directing traffic and pedestrians in the darkness around the MIT campus. Fire companies already in the area to assist people trapped in elevators suddenly went screaming past as they responded to car crash on Memorial Drive. I hustled up to the scene and found three cars jammed together at the intersection. Two people were transported to the hospital. A State Trooper at the scene came over to me and said “what a cluster…” for which I agreed and he asked if I could shoot a couple a scene setters for his report, which I obliged. Soon the power was back on the mayhem subsided.
My afternoon started on a street corner across from Boston Common on the first really cold day of the season, waiting to doorstep a notorious politician, which was to be followed by some man-in-the-street work in Beacon Hill. Trying to kill time and stay warm, I busted out my iphone and gave myself a creative challenge to come up with a publishable image before the reporter arrived. I popped on my wide angle lens, nothing, walked over to the T stop with the cool thick glass, couldn’t do much there either. So I gave up and returned to the street corner and continued to wait. Just as my bones began to chill, this woman appeared wearing a bold brimmed hat and she was speaking in Haitian Creole, or at least that’s what I thought it sounded like, and then almost as if on cue, the sun cracked through the clouds, and she began to sing. She sang some type of blessing, waved her arm, nodded as I made a few frame, and then disappeared. As she vanished a man walking by who must have noticed my intrigue told me that she has been around for years. When she left so did the chill that was in the air.