Lovers in Rome

A Note from Rome

Drifters, I write you a short note from the Eternal City, where the rain — when it falls — is not hard enough to keep me inside. I’m here in Rome leading a study abroad trip with 13 eager students. But when the students set off to do student things on their free time, I slip away into the drizzle with my camera. They want nothing to with an old guy like me anyway....

14 May 2023 · 2 min · 304 words · Jeremy Bassetti
Lake Titicaca Cerro Calvario View

Ceremonies on the Shores of Lake Titicaca

Drifters, A green tourist bus grumbled and hissed to a stop by a large, white anchor on the shore of Lake Titicaca. A group of travelers — some with unkempt, dreaded hair, khaki hiking boots, and brightly colored backpacks — staggered off the bus and settled into lounge chairs facing the lake. They pulled their coats tightly and summoned a server to provide them with steaming cups of coffee. I, on the other hand, walked north along the lake, passing a row of boats and towards a footpath that would lead me around Copacabana’s sacred mountain: Cerro Calvario....

14 April 2023 · 5 min · 1031 words · Jeremy Bassetti

Photography Projects as Research Projects?

Dear Drifters, I met Rosa standing in front of the Templo de San Ildefonso in Quillacollo. She and a group of photographers — a syndicate of photographers, according to the logo on their matching vests — were taking tourist photographs of pilgrims who visited during the Festival of the Virgin of Urkupiña. After taking a photos of pilgrims standing in front of the church or its altar, the photographer would print it on the portable Epson printer they schlepped around with them....

14 March 2023 · 5 min · 922 words · Jeremy Bassetti

Some Thoughts about Hiking with Others

My wife and I recently joined a hiking group and, over the last few Sunday mornings, we have hiked some 30 miles through nature preserves and state parks here in Central Florida. We’ve walked along rivers and swamps, over scrubland, and through pine forests, whose floors have been taken over by dense clusters of palmettos. We’ve come upon the occasional shell, a reminder that where we are walking was once seabed not long ago....

14 February 2023 · 5 min · 855 words · Jeremy Bassetti

Paradise, Drugs, & Walking Orlando

On a cool December day, I stepped out my front door and walked 3 miles to downtown Orlando. I took with me a camera, a voucher for a free meal at a restaurant, and a can of pepper spray just in case the neighborhood pitbull Cujo was off his leash again. I could have taken my bicycle, but I chose to go slowly to see what might present itself to me....

11 January 2023 · 1098 words · Jeremy Bassetti