Insert Irony Here

Window Seat [Day 63/365]
This is one of my all-time favourite photos that I’ve taken and it was such a lucky shot to get. I was out with a friend admiring the view when I happened to notice the woman sitting in the window with her legs dangling over the edge. It was one of the first sunny days of the year hinting at the arrival of spring and everyone seemed to be taking advantage of the sunlight, even though it was still quite cold. The image of the woman reading at the window was appealing on its own, but having the massive Domtoren rising up in the background just made it perfect.

A couple of months ago, as part of the city’s bid for European Cultural Capital of 2018, the organizing group hosted a photo competition asking for photos of Utrecht. In theory, you were supposed to work in the “18” theme, but you could also just include the logo and simply explain why the photo represented the best of Utrecht. I sent in this photo and simply added the logo to the corner (not seen here). I said something about the city being full of surprises and cultural gems, etc. I don’t think the quote really mattered in the end.

Sadly, before the photo competition was over, the city was knocked out of the running for cultural capital, along with Den Haag. Three other Dutch cities remain and I wish them well. Despite the early ending of the campaign, the photo competition continued and the winners were announced a week or so ago. My photo came in second out of 80 entries. It seems the jurors liked my “surprising and exciting” depiction of the Domtoren. You can read the news story and see the 1st and 3rd place photos here (in Dutch).

So where does the irony in the post title fit? First prize in the contest was an iPad. What did I win for second place? Two tickets to climb the Domtoren. You may remember that last month I posted about my phobia of sorts regarding stairs sans handrails? Yeah. I do also have a knee that can get a bit gimpy, which is what I explained when I wrote back to them about the prize. I didn’t feel like trying to explain (in Dutch) about my phobia, especially since I did know how to write about a kneeblessure. They kindly offered a Schatkamer tour as an alternative, which I’ve been wanting to do, so this is actually a wonderful alternative. Mainly, I’m just grateful that they even offered an alternative.

13 thoughts on “Insert Irony Here

  1. So mant levels here: hope, disappointment, fun, quirky aside, slight panic, generosity, roused interest, appreciation….
    And a GREAT picture: if that was 2nd, the 1st must have been ultra spectacular!!

  2. It’s a great photo, I remember you posting it, congratualtions on winning 2nd place! It’s such a lucky shot, I’ve seen this scene a few more times (people lazing in the window sill of old houses) but to have a camera with you, and with the Dom right there? That is a rare photo opportunity indeed. And how nice of the committee to offer you al alternative prize!

  3. No wonder Utrecht lost if the judges would rather associate the city with the hideous stationsgebied (no matter how artfully portrayed) over this beautiful and iconic scene 😉

  4. Alison, Congratulations on the 2nd Place photo and the prize 🙂

    I had a look at the 1st and 3rd place photo and to be honest I was severely disappointed… the first place photo was too busy, nothing grabbed your attention, was poorly composed and was rather messy, they only had a prominent ’18″in it so that’s maybe why it won ???(give me a break) the other two photos are seriously mediocre.

    You have a photo you can be proud of, it has focus, colour, light and shade, mood, composition and texture, I liked it first time I saw it and I still like it a lot.
    It grabs your attention and makes you smile.

    I’m like you, useless on stairs without handrails and my foots still gimpy too so I don;t blame your for a second for declining the prize as it was… the alternative prize sounds good though (we hope to see photos after your tour)

    Well done on beating out so many other photos too.

  5. Congratulations, Alison! It truly is a beautiful shot and among the 3 winners, the one that would make me want to find out more about charming Utrecht. Even the way the girl’s legs were dangling makes her look dainty beside the Domtoren. It reminded me of Tinkerbell actually. 🙂

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