Reflections on Prior Trips: Before Instagram

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Before the internet era, there was no social place to post pictures and reflections on travels for the whole world to see.  The concept didn’t even exist.  Sure, some had photo books, but those were bulky and faded and not portable.

It was the “stone age” era of travel promotion compared to today.  My kids cannot even comprehend even how to use an old analog phone, let alone a film camera.

Pre-internet, remembering travel visually was more of a solitary experience after the fact for most people, only remembered in prints, photo albums and color slides.

When I was a kid, my mom had pictures of her 1960s’ European travels on Kodachrome color slides that we could only see projected by a Kodak carousel projector machine every couple years (it required work to get the machine out, set-up the screen) – that was the “Instagram” of the 1960-1990s.  

Aside from some prints, that was where all I got to see images of her world travels.  I don’t even know where those slides are today, unfortunately.  Lost forever most likely.  Perhaps we’ll say the same about Instagram twenty years from now.  I don’t know.

Today, almost every corner of the planet has been Instagrammed or blogged by somebody at least once.  It’s turned travel into something else that is new and instant something I think is a good development in most ways, but the mystery is gone.

But what happens to all those pictures from travel experiences taken pre-Internet? 

Instead of only focusing on recent trips, I wanted to write about certain older trips of mine that occurred before the Internet era.  Without so many pictures to recall details, I might not remember as much as I do today where everything is geo-tagged. 

The paper picture prints from my old film cameras if they even exist (via scan) may not be as crisp, nor as many, but the experiences still mattered.  These pre-internet trips captured an era before tech changed everything, especially in how we perceive it afterwards.

Going back through my photo archives, I’ve discovered some trips in particular I wanted to post about.  The details of the experiences are hazy.  The posts won’t be in as in depth. 

But I wanted to catalog them as they were trips that were memorable and still think about them to this day, even without Instagram.

This is a scan from a paper print (from a Sears 35mm film camera) that I took at a look out area on Meteor Crater in Arizona, probably around 1990, while driving out to Los Angeles for the first time.

I’m be releasing some more blog posts here on my old-time travels soon.

Meteor Crater view frame closer v2

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