“I saw a boat slowly cutting its way through a frozen river and at the same moment a friend said, “Love breaks the ice”” from The Secret Language of Birthdays by Gary Goldschneider & Joost Elffers

Ebrahim Makhani by © Cyndal Lorch

Ebrahim is located out near Vancouver, BC, and conveniently enough, one of my work trips allowed me time to meet and photograph him for the project.

I’ve enjoyed allowing my subjects to give me their ideas on what they would like to do for their photos rather then me coming up with my own idea of how they should be captured. As an influence in the music community, I was thinking Ebrahim’s photo would have a musical edge to it…but once I met him and his family, I knew his idea was gold. We took this photo on the dock by the lake where him and his wife did their engagement photos…complete with the paddleboats. He also wanted to incorporate their 4-month-old son in the photo, so he came prepared with a baby carrier and a lollipop for added effect. Such a wonderful family!

It was an absolute pleasure meeting you guys and thank you so much for supporting our project.

By © Cyndal Lorch

An Interview with Ebrahim

Q. What is your best memory/moment from one of your past birthdays?

A. Without a doubt, when my wife told me she was pregnant with our son on my most recent birthday.

Q. How about the worst? And why?

A. I was 10 and my parents got me ski lessons for my birthday. As I was getting ready to hit the slopes, I needed a locker to put my stuff in. The ski instructor told me “not to worry you can leave your stuff on top of the locker.” When I got back from my lesson, all my stuff was stolen, including my favourite pair of Air Jordan shoes. Happy birthday to me.

Q. What was the present you’ve received for your birthday that most surprised you?

A. Again, this would have to be my wife surprising me with announcement of our little guy.

Q. Is there one food or dish that you insist on eating during your birthday celebration?

A. Not so much a dish or specific food but my wife and I have kind of made it an annual tradition to hit up our favourite restaurant on my birthday. It’s completely nut free, as I have an anaphylactic allergy to nuts. It’s a beautiful feeling to be able to enjoy a meal without the fear of dying.

Q. What do you believe is the most important aspect of celebrating a birthday?

A. To be honest I’ve never really been into celebrating my own birthday. But now that I have my own little family, spending time with each other and the ones we love is what I look forward to the most.

Q. Do you/your family/culture have any traditions/rituals/ceremonies that are performed to celebrate birthdays? What is it?

A. It was just my mom and I growing up, so on each other’s birthday we’d basically take turns doing the chores around the house. Simple, but it meant a lot.