I never intended to relocate to American Fork, Utah. I grew up in the Midwest with rolling green plains, cotton clouds, and locally-made everything. I am also ridiculously close to my family, especially my 98-year-old grandmother, so I didn’t mind sticking around. Little did I know I would have to move during a pandemic after losing my job. So quickly—and rather chaotically—my life went into boxes.
Roughly 1,300 miles later, I found myself surrounded by deserts, sage, and mountains. Everything is closed on Sundays, and there is nothing but space and the open road for miles and miles.
Months after moving, I came across a local diner, Jim’s Family Restaurant, and felt surprisingly at home. I began befriending the servers, many of whom came from difficult pasts, and in time started photographing them at work, as well as at home.
Shaped within the high-desert landscape, historically a place known for writing your own story, the diner and those who work there serve as a glimpse into new beginnings and a reminder of the possibility for a second chance.