Today while cleaning out a corner, I found the very first picture taken with my very first camera. The photo is dated June 1997. I had left Cookeville Tennessee in April 1996. It was not that cameras were completely outlawed in Cookeville, but basically the ones that came from a no-camera culture didn't get a camera and most of the other people who moved in either got rid of their cameras or kept them well hidden. I think in my mind it was an unspoken rule that we don't have the camera. During those years I never ever thought of even wanting a camera.
A year later after leaving Cookeville I bought a camera. I remember the day I bought my camera. I was spending time at Bedford PA and one day I went shopping for a camera with Matthew Weaver and Betty Ann (Zook) Stoltzfus. The two helped me select a camera because I didn't know what I want. As soon as we came back after our shopping spree one of the two took this shot of me out in John Weavers garage.
A year later I got rid of the camera because I was totally consumed with taking pictures. The camera ruled my life. I did without a camera for a year. Then I bought a big cheap 35mm camera and didn't let the camera rule my life again. One reason I was more careful was the cost of developing the film.
Around 2004-05 I bought my first digital camera, the smallest Kodak camera I could find... and my camera/photo life took off. I learned how to download them on my computer, how to look at them critically, how to edit and print only those I wanted from my computer and printed them from my printer.