Cycles / by Bill Frakes

I’m leaving Amsterdam this morning and I am thinking about cycles. Not the bicycles which are omni present in this city of canals.

But how things repeat constantly, in photography, in life.

I hadn’t visited Amsterdam in years when this summer Laura and I were headed to Berlin. It was meant to be a simple trip. Jacksonville to New York to Berlin for the World Athletics Championships. 14 days in Berlin, followed by road trip through Europe to Rome to work on the Missy story.

We started the day exhausted. We had spent 24 days of July in Australia making “All Over Down Under” for Nikon. We had come back to the Florida on a Tuesday and Wednesday had left for Nebraska to do a shoot for the release of Apple’s Aperture 3.

Anyway, back to the trip to Berlin. Our flight to New York got off the ground late. Then it ran into nasty weather--although we never saw any--and had to divert to Dulles.

We sat on the ground in DC for for 3 hours, causing us to miss our flight from JFK to Berlin.

We were rebooked on a flight leaving for Paris, where we were meant to catch a connection to Berlin.

Then, we were late leaving the gate on our new connection, and by the time we got to Paris, 5 hours late, we missed the connection to Berlin.

Which brings us to my first trip to Schipol--the Airport in Amsterdam--in nearly 10 years. Now instead of going Jacksonville to NYC to Berlin, now we were going Jacksonville to NYC to Paris to Amsterdam to Berlin.

But the airport was kind to us.

Two months later Nikon officially launched their D3s and we were off to Amsterdam, then Edinburgh.

Not three weeks later we landed in Schipol yet again, this time we were visiting Amsterdam to do a seminar with Nikon Europe.

Three months later we were headed home to Florida from Helsinki and sure enough, stopping at Schiphol.

One week later I was back to Amsterdam to judge World Press Photo. I brought along an empty suitcase, just in case. Now it is filled with beautiful books--four of them by my friend Stefan VanFleetern.

And so it continues...