It's a privilege to be a reporter

Published: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at 01:54 PM.

The list of the 200 best and worst jobs published last week by hit home for me since my job, newspaper reporter, was lowest on the list at number 200. Photojournalist, another of my jobs, wasn’t much higher at 188.

This list of the best and worst apparently fails to take into account that the work environment in a reporter’s job is always changing and physical demands are worth taking to get the story.

In the last 30 years, I have been a reporter and a photographer for small weeklies and big dailies. In truth, I haven’t made a lot of money. The pay has been in the experience.

I have written about and photographed everyone from the president to the local dog catcher, and heard some amazing life stories from everyone in between.

I’ve looked into the mouth of one of the largest active volcanoes in the world.

I’ve leaned out on a tether from the open back of a C-130 as it flew over an iceberg on ice patrol with the Coast Guard in the North Atlantic.

I’ve piloted a blimp and done teardrops at 400 mph in a high performance airplane with a former SR-71 pilot. I’ve met Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, the first men to walk on the moon, along with sound barrier-breaking pilots Chuck Yeager and Scott Crossfield. I’ve done aerobatics in the skies over the world’s biggest Marine Corps air base. I’ve driven a historic old fishing boat over inlet breakers, caught a 374-pound blue fin tuna. I’ve jumped into thin air on a bungee cord, photographed surfers in the tube with a water camera, and been scuba diving on a shipwreck offshore in the Graveyard of the Atlantic. I spent nearly every day for a month up close watching the move of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse.

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