Sunshine Shannon Photography

My Great Escape

LifeShannon Zurawski2 Comments

As you may or may not have known, I have been working over on Alcatraz for the last year and a half. Yes, on the island, in the ocean. No, I didn't give tours, I was a retail supervisor for the book stores. (Because that's what literally every single person asks me lol)

I thought I would go back and share some pictures from my time there with everyone, since I realized I never did. I also did a whole book for a class project, so I have quite a lot. I hope you all enjoy them!

This was my third day of work! Before I even started, my boss asked me if I wanted to come for the over night. We had a three hour tour of the island and Arnie (directly behind me, grey hoodie) cooked some bomb food. Actually, I think it was the first day that me and Arnie became BFF's cause we both were trying to buy everything at Safeway haha because we definitely needed a jar of Nutella (Not really. AND SOMEONE STOLE IT. We were both the most mad.)

Taken from the top of the lighthouse on Alcatraz. Fun fact, it was the first one on the west coast. And, I got to touch the very very top of it.

"The view from the island is beautiful!! You must take the best selfies." -Something someone actually said to me.

5 Things I'll Miss About the Island

  1. THE PEOPLE. Everyone is so nice! And lots of them let me french braid their hair, and that's when you know it's real.
  2. Taking the boat every day to work! What a cool view. I wish I sat outside more.
  3. Working in the middle of the ocean! How many people get to say they do that?
  4. Meeting people from all over the world. Like, seriously everywhere.
  5. Getting to go behind the scenes whenever I wanted.

5 Things I Won't Miss About the Island

  1. FLY SEASON. There's so many flies once it gets hot. They're everywhere. They're on the boat, they're in the stores, they're in the offices, they're on my face. It's all a no from me. 
  2. It's SO HOT in the store during summer. I wanted to die.
  3. The rain. All I have are my canvas vans, and let's just say they're not the most water proof things on the planet. I had to lay on the floor and put my feet on the heater to try and dry my socks out many times.
  4. And the cold. During the winter/almost every day it's super windy and cold. Obviously the island has very extreme weather haha.
  5. My hour commute, waking up at 6 am for my 8 o'clock shift, taking bart, walking a mile to work, and then the walk up the hill every day. Exhausting.

3 Reasons Why I'm Excited About My New Job

  1. I'm 10/15 minutes away from my house AND I GET TO DRIVE. No more bart! (except for school, but 4 less days I have to deal with it work for me.)
  2. I'm going to be working part time for the first time in over 3 years!!!! Going to school full time and working full time is literally one of the most exhausting things I've ever done. I'm tired all the time, never get to work out, barely get to see people, and never get to actually make food. I live off of easy frozen microwavable things. BUT NOT ANYMORE! (probably.)
  3. It seems like a super fun place to work, and everyone is so freakishly nice. (And lets not forget about the discounts. Holla holla. I'm going to finally get my laptop screen fixed!)

Taken in the hospital. I was walking around taking pictures for my project, and I was freaking out the whole time cause it has a really eerie vibe when you're up there all by yourself. I told one of the people working that if they don't see me in a half hour, then I died. But when I came down I went out a different way and didn't see my coworker to tell him that I was back down, and since I wasn't technically working, I didn't have a radio on me. I walked by someone else with a radio and all I hear is "HAS ANYONE SEEN SHANNON!?" and I was like OMG YES I AM HERE AND I DIDN'T DIE!! They were so worried and I felt so bad lol.

China Alley is one of my favorite places on the whole island.

Taken from up in the gun gallery.

Okay, let me tell you about this last picture here. So it's the over night, and we're sleeping in the segregation cells. My camera was acting super weird all night, so I'm already a little freaked out. I'm about to go to bed, and I'm like "let me take one last picture." I set up my tripod, and do a long exposure. I have my camera set up so it doesn't immediately show the picture after you take it so I'm not distracted by something new popping up every three seconds. I wait for the picture to take, finally press the play back button, and then I see this. TELL ME IT DOESN'T LOOK LIKE A SKULL. I literally thought I was going to die hahaha. I immediately put away my camera and I was done taking pictures for the night. 

And that's it for now.

I hope you all liked my little taste of Alcatraz. I enjoyed my time on the rock oh so much, but I'm excited and ready for my next adventure in a warmer place. And I'm excited for all of the new work I'll be able to create with more free time. Exciting things coming your way. (:
And thank you to all of you who actually check out and read my blog posts. You all are the best.

<3 Shannon