POLLORENO FAMILY || Encinitas, CA || These guys literally live like three houses down from my old favorite coffee shop from high school. Since my sister no longer lives right where we grew up, it's not every trip I get to revisit my old haunts. When I do, I enter this weird, nostalgic world where old scenes play out in front of me, old songs get stuck in my head and I catch glimpses of my footprints under 20 years of dust. This all happened as I drove along a particular stretch of PCH, turned right at the coffee shop and pulled up in front of the house my maps app led me to. Approaching the door, it felt surreal that people work and live and raise their kids here, like it's any normal place. Add to my dream state that Julia and I were high school friends, and that until this night I hadn't seen her (outside of Facebook) since June 6, 1996 when we received our diplomas on the football field and boarded buses bound for grad night.
Along with her twin sister, who I photographed with her family earlier this year, Julia and I took the same AP classes, played tennis together and swam on the same swim team. Like me, she left our hometown for college and grad school and lived away for a number of years; but unlike me, she returned . . . not to the exact same place we were raised, but a couple towns over and right around the corner from that favorite coffee shop. Full of nostalgia, I arrived at her home and she looked exactly the same, and we hugged and I met her awesome family. While her husband poured himself and me a drink, my old friend and I looked at each other and caught up some; then they piled themselves and their kids onto this incredible bicycle and we headed out on their favorite family past-time. It was fun and easy and special for all the reasons you'd assume, getting to shoot where both a person and a place harken you so far back, and so fondly.