They often say life isn't measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the number of moments that take your breath away. I say this not to romanticize my photo, but to capitalize on just what this picture means to me, because I finally understood what these words were trying to tell me on the day I saw this elusive predator skimming the water with its talons. I'd heard stories of birds of prey making stopovers at the nearby reservoir - and, even more rarely, taking up permanent residence - but had never been privy to such a sight before. At least, not until a few months ago. While the area is off-limits to civilians, passerby will drive down the stretch of road armed with cameras and try to take photos when traffic is at its lowest - myself included. I'd initially gone to see belted kingfisher, since they frequent the area. What I got instead was a flash of outstretched brown wings as this massive bird skated the waves, before flapping back to its perch by the roadside. My hands were shaking so badly, I was afraid I was going to butcher the shot.