Neither Jeff or I captured an image of the small, black bear cub that stopped on the dirt road in front of our car. We were both so surprised by the appearance of the little bear, married with a fear that momma bear must be close behind, that it never occurred to us to document the moment. Jeff’s camera was in his hands. As the passenger, he is constantly noticing and documenting our drive, the old barns, the rusted equipment, and our conversations. But, sometimes, we are simply present. We will remember the bear cub on the steep, dirt road somewhere between Utah and Colorado even without the video or image.
We make constant decisions throughout the day about where and when to capture a moment on video. We know our film is not high production, but we do try to consider audio, backgrounds, and perhaps more importantly, what to say. We make decision rules, both spoken and unspoken. We decided, for example, that we did not want to share bad reviews of breweries or places: we try to stay kind. When we have a bad experience, we just don’t include that brewery or beer or place to stay.
When we recorded ourselves talking about our first road trip brewery–10 Barrel in Bend, OR–in 2015, I was so self conscious. I worried that people would see us talking to our video camera, selfie-style, and find us odd. I got over it. No one cares. Now, we just try to find a spot with the best chance for decent audio and start talking.
Every other day, I get out the laptop, grab the SD card from the camera, plug in a small external hard drive to my computer and create a short video with all the footage. My goal is to hit the highlights, the places I fear we’ll forget over time (the stunning view from nowhere South Dakota), and to actually share useful information about all the breweries we visit. What this really means is that every two days I get to reflect on this journey…curate, remember, and imagine what’s ahead.