December 8th, 2007 - Paris, France
I was trudging along in the rain behind Notre-Dame on Saturday, trying to hide my frustration at the lack of real photo opportunities behind a feigned interest in gargoyles when the friend I was with, who as a general rule finds my obession with street photography unhealthy, not to say unethical, said to me in the most matter-of-fact way, "Did you see that woman we just passed ? She was wearing different coloured shoes - it would have made a great photograph."
I barely had time to glance around before the woman in question disappeared into the crowd behind me, but it was long enough to see that indeed the potential for a great shot was there.
I walked on, my frustration doubled, trying to work out whether my friend's remark was a coded encouragement, all the more welcome for being so unexpected, to indulge my passion for once. As lightheartedly as I could manage I repeated her words. "Yes, it would have made a great photograph."
We walked on further, as the rain became increasingly heavy. We stopped beneath the awning of a souvenir store and looked absentmindedly at postcards. The missed opportunity continued to eat away at me.
Eventually, I could contain myself no more. I turned to my friend. "I have to go and get a picture of her. Wait for me here," I blurted, turning to run before she could reply.
By the time I caught up with her, the woman with the unmatching shoes - a fashion statement, or an unwitting witness to her colour-blindness ? - was almost the other side of Notre-Dame. But I caught her, and I took several shots as discreetly as I could. This is the clearest one of her shoes. You can see the whole outfit here. Trust me, it's worth it.
This photograph has been blogged on the rather fabulous This Is Star.