the greatest reward

Emilio Barillaro

2014

New York, United States

Roma, 09.28.2014 - Mental notes.

Twelve years had passed since I last visited the "Big Apple" and my passion for photography at that time was not even a distant thought. This summer, however, I went there specifically for photography.

It was an unaccompanied trip - the first of my life - but, once I arrived, New York became my loving companion.

I walked for at least twelve hours each day, in the rain or under the scorching sun. I opened my soul (usually closed) and allowed myself to rely on it. I did not think rationally even for a second, but instead I surrendered myself to the emotions I felt at any given time. Without a travel plan or itinerary, I savored - each day and night - the streets steeped of the aroma of waffles and the smell of damp subway tunnels.

For a person who loves Street Photography , visiting New York was like a pilgrimage to Mecca for a Muslim; a mystical experience.

I was hit by a storm of emotions and visual stimuli. Everything seemed different, everything seemed much more "cool." I came across characters and situations that one would rarely encounter in Italy. What you see in New York in a day, happens here in Italy - if at all – perhaps once a year. I got the feeling that here practically nothing happens, everything is normal, flat ... And now I will have again, among other things, to deal with it.

Several weeks have already passed since I’ve returned to Italy and in the midst of the photo editing process, I’ve had a revelation that goes beyond wanting to have my work appreciated (nonetheless, I sure hope it is!), which is the joy I experienced in those photo shooting moments.

The lesson that I learned, therefore - and one that definitely will be helpful for me in the future, is that what really matters is “not the destination, but the journey.”.

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