As many of this blog's regular visitors (including long term Photo Hunters) know, I have a regular travel companion in Puppet Ponyo who is much less camera shy than yours truly. (So one really is more likely to catch a glimpse of her in my travel photos and photo-essays rather than myself.)
For those who are wondering: one reason why I like taking photos of Puppet Ponyo on my travels is that I think that her presence adds something extra -- and yes, often amusingly whimsical -- to what might otherwise be fairly standard touristy shots of famous places (like Yokohama's beautiful Sankeien Garden).
Once I got to looking for them, I found that there often are good spots where I can prop up Puppet Ponyo so that she can independently stand to pose for a photo (like in front of an old wooden building in a wooded area of Sankeien Garden). There also have been numerous occasions where I've been able to count on the kindness of strangers -- this especially in Japan, from where Ponyo hails! :) -- and friends to help pose my beloved puppet (like when a Tokyo-based friend took me to eat at the branch of Gonpachi with associations with George H. W. Bush and Quentin Tarantino).
Every once in a while though, I find myself having to pose Puppet Ponyo with one hand while using my other hand to snap a shot of her. Sometimes, the results are pleasing; at other times, less so. Take as an example the final photo at the top of this blog entry. After making my way up Sankeien Garden's main hill to get closer to its landmark pagoda, I tried to take pictures of Puppet Ponyo together with the pagoda. Prior to my finally getting one that I was happy with, I got attempts like this one looking like she was fearing for her life because a dark shadow was descending over her!
In all honesty, it took me a while to figure out what was making that shadow before realizing that the culprit was me! Amused, I decided to keep that "fearful Puppet Ponyo" photo for posterity. And now I'm really glad I have because I think it well suits today's themes chosen for Sandi's and Gattina's Photo Hunts: i.e., in it (via that dark shadow over Puppet Ponyo's face), you have the additional element of being shown a glimpse of me! ;b