I was at the most beautiful market I’ve ever seen!

The most mesmerizing market out of all that I’ve visited in the 82 cities and 21 countries I’ve been to thus far. Yes. It was incredible.

….and I failed.

Sort of.

The meat section of the Crawford Market in Mumbai, India, is in a separate building. It is a giant gazebo. There are at least 4 different entryways, open metal trusses and a pointy roof with parts missing.

It is around 11am by the time I get to Crawford Market and all I see are crows flying everywhere. There are hardly any butchers or shoppers left in the meat section. There is a scattering of butchers chopping and grinding through what remains of their day. The place is nearly deserted. There are no large sides of carcass anywhere…..it doesn’t matter.

The broken roof filters the harsh noon light and perfects it . The metal truss is peeling its cerulean blue paint. Giant meat hooks are coved with orange rust. Bits of meat and bones are scattered about and the crows fight over them. The crows caw. The chop, chop of metal through bones breaks through an otherwise deserted scene.

The crows.
The light.
The peeling blue paint.
The giant rusted meat hooks.
The bits of bones and entrails.

I am transfixed. I am mesmerized by the combination.

Two and a half rolls of medium format film later, I think, I hope, I pray that I’ve got the shot.

A single shot that has all of the elements of this meat market is all I want.

Sometimes the picture shows itself to you but it refuses to be caught.
Sometimes a moment can only be experienced and never rendered.

I never quite got that perfect shot with all the elements. The scene before me was beautiful but not everything could be fit into the frame and still be amazing.

I had to let go of the desire, of wanting all of the elements in play, eliminate, choose, and focus in on what would make the best photograph instead.

The image above does not have all the parts that made this market in Mumbai so beautiful to me but it is a lovely image that expresses the essence of what I experienced.

India, country 21 for Wok the Dog, and I feel like some one has ripped off a layer of my skin. If you missed an episode on the latest adventure in India, type in “India” in the search box and find out more.

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