I won’t disturb the slumber of feelings that have died

Pretty happy at the moment I follow a sky arts programme on the telly, 4th series coming up. Anyway one of the finalists, unprompted, actually liked a couple of my photographs. This means a hell of a lot to me, I means its massive, to me anyway.

A bloke soaking up the low winter Sun in London on a Sunday morning

I recently joined a camera club which I attend for the guest speakers. I have visited about five times now and as yet, have spoken to no one. I have come to the conclusion that the membership are not my sort of people, now I’m not being snobbish and I am sure they are kind to their mums. But I just don’t like them, I came to this conclusion last Thursday, trouble is I don’t know who my sort of people are anymore. Digging deeper I really am not all that sure who I am anymore. I’m certainly a completely different bloke to who I was 10-20-30 years ago and I do think I have lost myself a little over recent years.

I’m off to the Photography Show at the NEC on Monday, I have to leave my wallet behind, I bought a Canon 35mm F1.4 lens last month and I need to let the bank account get over the shock before I buy anything else. Very pleased with the lens though.

On Monday I went to the camera show at the NEC Birmingham, it was a shock to the system. I go to the NEC a couple of times a year for trade shows but I never really visit for personal interest. The car parking is extortionate at £16 for the day, proof that lack of competition causes profiteering. Lord help us as competition for our public services and utilities get swallowed up by foreign mega companies. The next shock was the £19 entrance fee! I never pay to go into trade shows and I thought the fee for this, which is ultimately a large number of stands flogging camera equipment was excessive. Any show discounts were quickly wiped away by the £35 already paid out just to attend. Any way I did enjoy the show and even shelled out for some new stuff:

  • Lee ND Filters
  • A Tether Lead
  • Paper
  • A magazine subscription which included a Loweprowe rucksack

There were a few demonstrations using models and what amazed me the way the minute a pretty girl sits on a stool all the cameras came out (mostly guys) just to get a shot, the aisles became clogged up and the photographers would just stand there waiting for the person doing the demonstration to come out. I can’t imagine the photographers shots were very good as they were mostly out of sync with the lighting set ups. It just struck me as odd.

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55 Times round the Sun

Tomorrow sees my 55th birthday putting in an appearance. Last year I took a long look at my life and made a few decisions to change some things.

The changes I put in place are working out quite well, I am learning to let go of things that cause me grief or affect my mood or well being. I have had some family issues which were in the main caused by me, however the reaction from my mother and younger brother were not what I expected. Forgiveness from them is now out of the question and this hit me quite hard at the time. Over the past year I have come to terms with this and I am now comfortable with their decisions and am happy that I will never have anything to do with them again.

I also made the decision to get out more and I have taken up photography again and this is helping me do this. I can see this continuing at a good pace.

We have also made more use of the boat this year than we have for a number of years. We’ve even managed a week on the water and we have another 5 days coming up this week. We were considering selling Martha this year due to the lack of use, so this was our make or break year, I am pleased to say that Martha will still be a fixture and fitting for a few more years. Spending time on the broads also figures into my photography.

I renewed my Leyton Orient season ticket also this year, and so far I haven’t missed a game.

So I aim to continue upping my activity in a bid to reach retirement in a condition that I might be able to enjoy it.

In other news I was preparing Odin, my Land Rover, for MOT today. Unfortunately I have found some bad corrosion on the sills which is a bit of a showstopper as far as the MOT goes. So expect some photo’s in due course of my progress in welding in some new sills.

I am sitting in my living room having a glass of wine pondering my birthday, and the past year and I think I am altogether in a better place. So I raise a toast to the people who never made it through the last 12 months, and there have been a few.

Here’s to the next 12 months! Prost!

 

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I am an Island

Flippin hell, where has the time gone? Summer is now over and we are a third of the way into the autumn.

I have had a great summer and even a good September.

My camera skills, (not that I was anything more than competent) are coming back to me. I am now using a Canon 7D, I am really enjoying taking pictures again and I have even joined a website called meetup.com, it has tons of camera groups who meet up in places and set about taking picture. I haven’t been to any meet up yet as I don’t want to embarrass myself, but I know I will go soon.

 

During the 2nd week of September we took the boat out for a week, we haven’t done this for some time. We had a great time and we even managed to get on at Ranworth, this is Lesley’s favourite mooring spot. It was great to be out and about again and the boat performed well and without event. Alfie loved it and was as good as gold while we were out, he has settled into boat life very quickly.

We are off again for a few days in October.

Radio

Radio has been a bit quiet of late with many other distractions of late. I have been back to the radio club, but I doubt I will be going back on a regular basis. August and September were probably about the quietest months I have known since taking up the hobby. This can be blamed on the fact that we are quite low down in the sun spot cycle and the fact that there was quite a lot of solar flare activity which does play havoc with the ionosphere.

Things are starting to pick up again however, and I even managed to work a Canadian this week VO1MP, stangely enough he was my first Canadian contact when I first had a QSO with him back in 2007.

Work is getting a little problematic at the moment and I think it may be time to consider my options again.

Orient

I renewed my season ticket this year despite the league table drop and now have M115 for the year, my seat neighbours are a good bunch and I have a good spot. The season started well but we are starting to slip again, so watch this space.

 

Gott Mitt Uns!

 

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You aint a beauty but hey you’re alright!

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post and this is in the main because I have been so busy up at the boat. This weekend has been the first one in seven weeks that I have actually been at home all weekend.

Work has been a real grind lately with a lot of negative activity in the press and media which has ramped up the pressure on my department considerably. Because of this radio has had to take a bit of a back seat of late.

I have been getting back into photography lately and as my technique improves I started seeing the shortfall with my current camera, Canon 1000D. So I took the plunge last week and bought a 7D body and upgraded.  I liked the 1000D but in comparison to the 7D it is way behind. The 7D is an 18mp camera as opposed to the 1000D which is 10mp. The 7D is nearly twice the weight of the 1000D but it does feel like a proper camera, the bonus is that the lenses fit both the 7D and the 1000D, so it was a relatively cheap upgrade.

I have been out this weekend trying it out and and I am liking the results see below:

Micro Butterfly Buff TailBumblebee Buff TailBumblebee2 Deer Statue Hornet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some of the pictures above were taken at my local nature reserve, I live about half a mile away and in the twenty odd years I have lived here this is the first time I have visited. I was really fortunate as today they had an exhibition on beekeeping and honey making. They actually had a working hive on display with glass panels, it was fascinating. I got talking to a chap outside who had been keeping bees for over thirty years. I then had a walk around the reserve and it made a nice pleasant stroll. I will definitely be returning.

Alfie found a frisbee yesterday and has made me take it out every time we went for a walk this weekend, the poor sod is knackered now.

I belong to a facebook group called photos of Harlow, there are people on there who are a mine of information about Harlow. I found out this weekend that the pond in Risdens wood is actually a crater left over from a V2 rocket strike in WWII, in fact it was the 599th rocket to hit the UK. I think my dog would probably thank the Germans for this if he could.

Football season starts next week for me with Orient at home to Barnet, we have lost some good players over the summer but I am hoping with the new manager they get wound up enough to want to get back up into the 3rd division, watch this space.

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