Friday, August 31, 2012

The pale uncertainty of a shadow

A lot of shopping to do today. First I searched for new brake pads for my bicycle. I searched several shops, and only in the fourth I found the right kind.

Then there was the matter of getting a new phone for my daughter, who lost her old one, and of course also the sim card had to be replaced. But the shop had relocated, so there was some walking until that was done. We got the cheapest Nokia that was available, a Nokia 113, I hope it is durable.

It was sad that the old phone was lost. It was a Nokia 1100, which proved to be a very durable phone indeed. Maybe we should have bought a dozen of them when they were still available. These days it seems that most phones are far from durable, it doesn't take long until they start to break up. At least so it is with me and with the daughters.

Also, I dropped my Parker IM fountain pen on the floor some days ago, and the cap is no longer tight. I didn't manage to repair it, so I searched for a similar one in shops, and no luck. In one shop there was a place for Parker fountain pens, but all were sold. Well, I need to continue searching.

I was mostly satisfied with this pen, although I have had better ones, but this one was good enough given the price. Maybe I should try another model from Parker, perhaps a Parker Urban.

I know that some pay hundreds of euros for fountain pens, but not I. Although I once got a nice Shaeffer as a present from a colleague, and used it for several years, until it was all worn out.

We planted an apple tree in our garden two years ago. Today we picked the first apples from it. Originally there were seven apples, but one dropped to the ground when it was still small, and one got rotten, so in the end we got five apples from the tree. And they were good indeed, sufficiently sweet with a nice spicy taste.

(Posting title is from the poem The Broken Fountain by Amy Lowell.)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

I disembarked, but knew he would capture me

A busy day once again. I commuted by bus, and did a little bit of walking when going to a meeting. Not much exercise today.

In the bus I read The Sherlockian by Graham Moore, in a Finnish translation, and finished the novel this evening. Moore tells a rather nice story about detective fiction, and fans of detective fiction, and authors of fictional characters, and there of course is a story about solving crimes, fictional of course. One of the characters in the novel is Bram Stoker; the fog in the above photographs is a fitting coincidence.

(Posting title is from the poem The Flight by Grace Schulman.)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

If anything fits, it’s accidental

I feel tired. Maybe it is due to the bicycle commute, but I took it rather slow today. Or maybe it is just the general autumn hurry which is exhausting.

In any case, I haven't had much energy for taking photographs recently, even though I have been reading about photography. Today I posted a review (in Finnish) of the book Camera and Lens: The Creative Approach by Ansel Adams, a book which I did like a lot although the technology discussed is certainly out of date these days.

Posting title is from the poem Dreams by Wisława Szymborska, translated from the Polish by Clare Cavanagh and Stanislaw Baranczak. I have borrowed a book of her poems, 100 poems translated into Finnish, from the library, and she really is something. Also, some of her poems use photography terms explicitly (such as the poem Negative) while others feel like photographs. Recommended!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Was rash and Polaroid

Today I went shopping with the daughters, to a shop where I was the only non-female present, maybe because of the shop contents: retail outlet chain of fabrics. But the daughters had fun looking through what was available.

Recently I have been reading old photography books borrowed from the local library. One of the nicest finds was Singular Images by Ansel Adams. I wrote a book review of it in Finnish. And it so happens that at the Finnish Museum of Photography there is an exhibition of just this kind of photographs, made with Polaroid technology.

(Posting title is from the poem Song by Randall Mann.)

Monday, August 27, 2012

I trust the sanity of my vessel

I commuted by bicycle today, and got soaking wet. My gear (helmet, shoes, cycling shorts etc.) are still drip, drip, dripping... It was not raining everywhere, but one of the showers happened to be where I was, and it was pouring so hard that the street was flooding.

Paul Maxim wrote about his great, great grandfather Joshua Slocum, "the first man to ever sail around the world alone".

I borrowed Slocum's book of his trip from the local library, in a Finnish translation from 2005, and it was a great book indeed. I posted a book review (in Finnish) at the Valopolku blog. Slocum was not only a skilled sailboat-builder and sailor, he also knew how to write a story so that it hooks the reader.

My daughter started her guitar lessons today. We didn't buy a smaller-sized guitar after all, she is using an old full-sized one we had at home, and it seems to be quite ok for learning to play.

(Posting title is from the poem To the Harbormaster by Frank O'Hara.)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

And breaking the golden lilies afloat

I went with two oldest daughters for a walk at lake Bodom. It was a calm day, and warm enough, up to +20 °C, with small clouds sailing on the sky. For us the conditions were perfect.

Few people were walking in the forests by the shore. I have the impression the Bodom is never crowded, but maybe it is because we go there when other people go elsewhere.

(Posting title is from the poem A Musical Instrument by Elizabeth Barrett Browning.)

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A handful of air with a dream in it

I got plenty of exercise today, first riding the bicycle, and then going for a walk with my daughter to Luukki forests, around lake Halkolampi.

The day was just right for being outside, up to 20 °C, half clouded. There was no wind, but because of the cold nights we have had the mosquitoes are no longer a problem.

There were some wasps in a hole in the ground, but my sharp-eyed daughter spotted them and warned me of stepping there. I once got several wasp bites from such a situation, and had to run fast to escape the wasps.

While taking photographs a new error appeared on the LX5. A couple of times previously the display has suddenly changed aspect ratios without me doing anything with the aspect ratio switch, but this time I took a photograph while this happened. Above you see the result, looks a bit strange, doesn't it. As usual, I had the 1:1 aspect ratio selected when the LX5 decided to act up.

(Posting title is from the poem Obbligato by Bruce Smith.)

Friday, August 24, 2012

What a funny place to rupture

I have tried on several Fridays standing at work. I raise the desk so high that I can work standing, not sitting on the office chair.

I have a desk which can be raised or lowered by simply pressing a button, which is really convenient, even though the desk is not quite as stable in the high position as lowered down. But it works, "standing Fridays" seem to be a great idea.

I should start doing the same on other days as well, maybe half a day each work day, or something like that. One really notes the difference in how the muscles are used, and the first time I felt some strain after two or three hours, but today it wasn't so bad any more.

(Posting title is from the poem Mayakovsky by Frank O'Hara.)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

She walks through the air the rain has washed

According to TOP, yesterday was annual Street Photography Day. And as I wrote yesterday, I didn't take any photographs then.

But today I did, of streets, although these are not really what is meant by street photography, as most were taken from inside a car.

It was a rainy day today, and I commuted by car, because of meetings. Speaking of the car, I have been rather happy, as it has passed the mandatory annual vehicle inspection. The car is 12 years old, and I was worried that there would be expensive repairs ahead, but all went well. There weren't any defects, and not even a remark was noted, all was fine. For a year...

(Posting title is from the poem A Man Meets a Woman in the Street by Randall Jarrell.)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

My shadow pinned against a sweating wall

Today I didn't take any photographs. It has been some time since this happened, but I was just too tired. I got over two hours of exercise when commuting and when walking to meetings, but I think I got tired mainly because of the busyness over the last few days. Well, it is good to relax every once in a while.

The two photographs show here are from yesterday.

At home I finished reading The Fallen Man by Tony Hillerman. I enjoyed the slow-life sentiment of this novel; an action-packed triller would not have fit my feelings today. Well, the book described rock-climbing, but not in such a manner that it would have generated too much anxiety.

Posting title is from the poem In a Dark Time by Theodore Roethke, selected because it fits the mood.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

When the wild leaves loosen

After dinner I went for a walk in the nearby forests. Autumn is approaching fast, foliage is starting to get a bit of color here and there. I ate a couple of blueberries, but they don't taste much anything any more. And I don't have much interest in mushrooms these days.

There is a pile of things to do at work, of the type "ready by tomorrow". Maybe things even out during the next few weeks. When people return to work after summer vacations there tends to be a rush to get things done.

(Posting title is from the poem Day in Autumn by Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by Mary Kinzie.)

Monday, August 20, 2012

A roof for when the slow dark hours begin

Some days are such that there isn't much else than try to keep going, one thing after another happening, so that at some point the pile of things to do seems miles high. I hope tomorrow is a bit less tense, but I suspect otherwise.

(Posting title is from the poem Up-Hill by Christina Rossetti.)