Getting the Shot

I feel like I have no story for a while, then I have an overwhelming amount to say.
Here is the story for today.
I have been doing a photography challenge for a while now, since January 1, but since I'm off work during the summer, I've kicked my efforts into high gear.
This means setting a challenge for myself that has surprised even me. It also means doing things to get the shot that I want that I know I probably should do.
That's this story.
The story of how I almost died gong to Black's Beach.
But I got the shot!
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Long story short, I met this cute guy on Tinder and we flirted and the subject of taking a nude photo at the beach (for the letter N) and he agreed to let me photograph him at Black's Beach. For those of you who don't know, the journey to Black's Beach is a dangerous one. There is a cliff side where you literally slip and slide your way down, or there exist stairs (about 3000 of them) of varying heights and irregular size that are steep as fuck and can be just as deadly as the cliff side. My date, my model, an ex-Marine, chose the cliff side. Wanting to impress him and get the shot, I followed. I had descended the cliff face to all but 5 feet from the sandy floor of the canyon.
And then I slipped and collapsed like an accordion on my ankle. Instead of my feet shooting ahead and falling on my ass, I simply crumpled like a Z, my full body weight crushing down on my foot causing my ankle to give a loud POP before I stretched back out into an L.
The pain was excruciating.
So I'm at the bottom of this canyon at a nude beach supposedly taking photos of this cute guy who seems both into me and into exhibitionism, and I'm dying.
I quickly realize that I can catch fish for sustenance but without fresh water I will die in 3 days down here.
I silently send a psychic good bye message to my friends.
The pain subsides, and we hobble (well, he walks, I hobble) to a place near the beach that isn't very crowded, and we lay down to rest.
Eventually the throbbing slows long enough for me to suggest that since we're down here with no way up, we may as well do the shoot. He undressed (impressive!) and I took 50 or so shots of him playing in the water. He posed laying on his towel on the sand, his military body glistening with sea water in the sun. His ass looked so hot. Any other day I would have been touching, biting, whatever… out in public or not, that was just too inviting to pass up. Except I was dying of a broken leg that would probably need to be amputated, so I didn't feel frisky at all.
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There was no way I was getting up that cliff, so we started walking toward the stairs. We passed a lifeguard vehicle and Avi went up and asked if they could carry us to the top because of my injury. They would not. I guess if I was able to walk, then I was able to get myself up.
The stairs were a nightmare. Each step put weight on an ankle that only an hour before had become completely separated from my leg, flopping around like a fish out of water. Each step hurt not just my ankle, but these legs who haven't done any real exercise in months - years, really. Up 3000 steps with him encouraging me all the way.
I will point out that at one point, I said to him that if he could just help me get to the bottom of the stairs, he could go on up ahead and head home; I would get myself up the stairs eventually. He refused. He's a damned nice guy! He stuck with me and did that military group training thing where he encouraged me every step of the way. "We're almost to the next landing, keep going!" "We're almost halfway, nearly done now!" "You're doing it, you can make it!"
And I did.
Painful, exhausted, but alive.
He was even sweet enough to go get his car and pick me up at the top of the stairs to deliver me to my own car, which was on the other side of the parking lot closer to the cliff side. A true gentleman.
The shot came out great, in fact it is one of the most popular ones on my Photo-A-Day Challenge online. People were excited by the image, and by the story it tells. I'm so glad I did it.
Sometimes with great sacrifice comes great success.

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