Five minutes after walking through customs at O’Hare, I received a phone call from Education Week associate director of photography Nicole Frugé [about an assignment on the Chesapeake Bay]. After a three-year stint working for a newspaper in Abu Dhabi, I was on my way to my new home-base in Virginia.
Forty-eight hours later, I found myself amid familiar waters. Having spent the majority of my life growing up in the Hampton Roads region of Virginia, the Chesapeake Bay was no stranger. On this particular day, the Bay and I were reunited alongside a classroom of biology students from Ocean Lakes High School who were taking part in the Chesapeake Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Boat Program.
The Chesapeake Bay made for a great host for my homecoming and first assignment as a freelancer in the states. Her waters remained calm, while the manager of the Bay Foundation Hampton Roads Education Program Yancey Powell, Captain Jimmy Sollner, and the local middle schoolers hoisted up nets of fish and other sea creatures as part of their hands-on lesson.
While most students did a little bit of their own gentle poking, handling, and prodding of the creatures for classroom credit, I clicked away allowing the bay to lead the way.
I was home again…. —Rich-Joseph Facun