About five years ago I went on a tour of Italy. I remember this trip very well for a few reasons. One, the photos turned out really shitty. I really didn’t try very hard to take good pictures. I had gone through a phase of not taking photos while traveling, but because this was Italy everyone wanted me to take photos. I just looked, then snapped the shot, never really composing them or bothering to see what the light balance setting was. Turned out, it was on tungsten which messed up the photos badly. Trust me when I tell you, these crappy photos involved many hours of Photoshop editing to get them into this state.
Another reason I remember Italy so well is that I was surprised at how third world it seemed—like it was well past it glory days. The architecture, art, and history are undeniably spectacular, and the culture is wonderful, but there was just something about it. Anyway, the other reason I remember this trip so well is that when I got back to the US, the economy was tanking. I spent a lot of money on this trip because of a poor exchange rate and the general high cost of Europe, so coming home to absolutely no work sucked. I didn’t expect a two-week vacation to turn into an eight month vacation. Nonetheless, I loved Italy and was awed by the beauty, and certainly numb to churches and famous art after that. 😉