One of my few from 2005
Yesterday, I was rearranging and reorganizing, again, my Lightroom files. I wanted to group shots into years and then shoot dates within those years. I finally got it complete and was not too surprised by the results.

As for Lightroom, I have 2 main catalogs. Family or personal pictures and then the rest. Most of the pictures are in ‘the rest’ because these are my day to day shoots.

As for digital files, here is what I have:

2003: 32 – This is when I got my first ‘decent’ digital camera, my Minolta DiMage A1. I got it in mid-December of 2003, so not many pictures.
2004: 981 – In June of 2004, we moved to Charlotte from Dallas. I started working in the Investment Bank division of B of A. More on that later.
2005: 48 – Yes, that’s right! A total of 48 pictures for the whole year! 48!
2006: 6,542 – I left the GIB (Global Investment Bank) in June of 2006. I was seriously burnt out after having been there for 2 years. My dear wife supported me in taking some time off between jobs, a whole 5 months off between jobs! I can never thank her enough! Of the 6,542, only 232 (70 of those at a basketball game!) were taken between January and June of 2006, the rest, some 6,300 were taken after I left the bank.
2007: 19,427 (to date) – Now, that’s more like it!

So, in 2005, I took 48 pictures. I cannot tell you how much pressure I was under. I was working 10-12 hours/day, 5 or 6 days per week, and when I got home, all that I wanted to do was to be left alone and to go to sleep. It was bad for my family, especially my wife, but she held down the fort while I bitched, moaned, groaned, and was otherwise very cranky all of the time.

I can’t tell you how many sunrises and sunsets that I watched from those windows on the 12th floor of Hearst Tower in downtown Charlotte. I remember seeing the birds coming to roost in the trees every evening. I remember how great those sunsets looked while I sat there and continuously tried to make another impossible schedule so the investment bank could make their numbers, x number of billions of dollars.

When I had finally had enough, I went to my boss, Julia, and told her that I wouldn’t renew my contract. She told me that she hated to see me go and that I was an important ‘resource’ and ‘headcount’. Yes, she actually called me a headcount … that’s what you are in GIB, a headcount. Anyway, she further went on to tell me that not everyone is cut out to be in the investment bank. Truer words were never spoken. So, I left on June 9th, 2006 and never looked back.
I’m back at B of A, as it’s only one of two major games in town; however, I’m on the services side of the bank where people mosey in at 9:30-ish, and leave whenever they finish. My boss is super cool and lets me work from home sometimes, and all is good. It’s as close to a stress free environment as you can get.

I suppose, looking back, that I had to go through that fire to appreciate this peace. I do. Yet, I remain vigilant, never to let another year like 2005 happen where I sacrifice everything for the job!

Tranquility Hill

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