Anja and I met in Grade 8 when I gathered enough courage to introduce myself after our math class. My middle name is Anja and it’s not exactly a common name so we bonded over our shared German heritage. We then both joined the high school basketball team and because we looked pretty similar when in our basketball uniforms (both tall with blonde pony tails) we earned ourselves the nicknames Casanja #1 and Casanja #2 on the court. Our coach once sent me out onto the court to play Anja’s normal position of wing, when I was ALWAYS a post, but I went along with it, figuring she knew best, and proceeded to flail around in confusion out around the three point line. A few minutes later our coach clued in that a) she had sent the wrong player out and b) that I had no idea where I was supposed to be in the play and so she began yelling at the bench “what on earth is Cassidy doing out on wing!! Where’s Anja?!” Anja was sitting on the bench behind our coach and a time out was quickly called. The Casanja’s were swapped and we were carefully looked at before being sent out onto the court after that day!

 

We had so many fun times together in high school, including being together on the night that she first met Haafiz. That was way back in Grade 10. These two high school sweethearts tied the knot this past summer and I was so honoured to be there to capture some portraits for them the morning of their mosque ceremony. Anja wore an incredible white sari for the ceremony and the sun even came out after a morning of cloud cover. The couple opted for a first look down at the shipyards in North Vancouver, which is an area that has changed quite a bit since I grew up there. With so many interesting back drops, we could have spent all day there.

 

Congratulations again Anja and Haafiz! I am so happy for you both!

 

I hope you enjoy the photos!

 

–Cassidy

 

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