"The Best of 2005" for me is how I felt when I shot this panorama from a small park in one of my favorite little villages in the Vercors mountains of southern France. My wife and I lived nearby in Grenoble for over 2 years, and we discovered the town of St. Nazaire-en-Royans on one of our many drives. The town itself straddles the overflow of the Royans river, with grottos and waterfalls, while a modern aqueduct spans the small valley directly above the town.
This panorama was shot during our last few days in France (before moving to Canada), after visiting some friends and saying "adieu" too many times. I was sad, drained, and already starting to miss the mountains when we stopped in St. Nazaire one more time. The clouds came in and matched my mood, but then the rain stopped and the lights came on, and now months later I can appreciate all of the beauty in this otherwise somber scene. The best part of 2005 was being able to see so much that I might otherwise have missed.