Last summer, a box filled with rolls of expired 35mm film arrived unexpectedly at my doorstep. The sender was unknown, with only a return address from Lewes, Delaware, written on the box. I was intrigued by the contents. There was no note of explanation inside the box, just cartridges and boxes of expired 35mm film. I couldn't help but wonder why someone would send me a box of unexposed 35mm film and who the sender could be.
I know only one person in Delaware; she was never into film photography. I used Google to get information about the shipping address on the shipping label. According to my search, the box was shipped from a post office in Lewes, Delaware. I didn’t recognise the person's name on the box, and I didn’t know anyone in Lewes except for our friends Matt and Jean, who had only recently moved there. We spent a weekend in Lewes with them last summer.
I put the box out of my mind for several months. But then I decided to use one of the expired rolls of Kodak BW400CN. The mystery of who sent the box annoyed me. I went back to Google, but my search proved fruitful this time. I focused on the name of the person on the box and found a court article that mentioned a name with which I was familiar; Bhavna’s college roommate, Traci!
Then it all made sense. Months earlier, I contacted her about the camera equipment she used at our wedding. We didn't have money for a photographer, and Traci stepped in and offered her skills. I told her I was reshooting the film, and she mentioned that her mom had some expired rolls of 35mm film that she would send me. I had utterly forgotten that conversation and expected something coming from Peapack, New Jersey, where I thought her mom still resided. The mystery was solved.
All of the rolls of 35mm film expired more than three decades ago. Even though they were expired, I was still delighted and couldn't wait to see what I could do with them. I took each roll out of the box, admiring the vintage packaging and feeling thankful for the unexpected gift. I catalogued the items in the box.
I catalogued my unexpected gift. Is it worth exposing any of these expired 35mm films?
|Fujifilm||Fujichrome Provia 400F||400||6|
|Fujifilm||Fujicolor Super HG||1600||1|
|Fujifilm||Fujicolor Super HQ||200||4|
|Kodak||Ektachrome Infrared E1R||-||1|
|Kodak||Tri-X Pan 400||400||4|