Monday, November 30, 2015

Is daily going on before our eyes

The photographs were taken in Luukki on October 31st.

This morning I walked for 3 h 20 min at Kytäjä-Usmi outdoor area. Even though today is a rainy day, there was a break in the rain between 9 am and 12 am, and I got only a little wet. However, the paths were flooded and so soft that you had to take care, because even tall rubber boots were not tall enough in some places.

I started walking from lake Piilolammi, went north along the Piilonsuo swamp, which was really interesting place to explore, and walked via Kypäränsuo swamp to lake Iso-Kypärä. Then I walked to lake Kiiskilampi, using the compass, across the forest where there were no paths to follow. From the south end of lake Kiiskilampi I found a little path going to lake Mäkiperänlampi, and then it was easy going, following the wide path past lake Pitkännokanlampi and lake Pikku-Piilo to where I started. I didn't hear or see any people at Kytäjä-Usmi, and there were no cars at the parking place either.

Last week I got 14 hours of exercise. This week started quite well, but perhaps I should take a rest day at some point.

(Posting title is from the poem A Vision of Poesy by Henry Timrod.)

Sunday, November 29, 2015

The lid over each eye

The photographs were taken on October 31st in Luukki. There was some frost that provided highlights to the landscape.

This morning I walked for three hours in Nuuksio, walking around lake Suolikas. This was the second time I have done this, and it was quite exhausting, going up and down the rocky hills around the lake. Still, I was 15 minutes faster this time.

At home the temperature was +4 °C, but at the lake there was a little bit of frost, and some ice was floating on top of the lake. It was quiet, and I didn't meet or see anyone at the lake.

(Posting title is from the poem Dead Man’s Dump by Isaac Rosenberg.)

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Perhaps one day I will be ready

The photographs were taken on October 31st in Luukki, southwest of the Luukki lake, by the golf course.

This morning I walked for two hours in Luukki, visiting five lakes: Väärälampi, Mustalampi, Hauklampi, Käärlampi and Halkolampi. It was quiet and wet, temperature at +6 °C.

I have five different types of gloves for commuting by bicycle, for different conditions, from summer to winter season. Recently I got new thin gloves, to replace the old ones which were completely worn out. Today I realized they might be good when handling the camera, and so it was, there are excellent for this purpose as well, providing a good grip and the ability to press the buttons.

This reminds me of the strange sizes of bicycle clothing. It seems that manufacturers expect people who ride to be smaller than normal people, so one needs to buy clothes one or two sizes larger than normally. This seems to apply to shoes, pants, jackets, and gloves. The new gloves are size 3XL, and they fit perfectly, even though normally the size XL is the right one.

(Posting title is from the poem Hanging in Egypt with Breyten Breytenbach by Chris Abani.)

Friday, November 27, 2015

And turn those limpid eyes on mine

The photographs were taken on October 30th.

Yesterday I got the bicycle front light, Trelock LS 950 Control ION. I charged it up, and used it today during the commute. It is much better than the old one. And it should be, as the old one cost 10 euro, and this one 60 euro (at 40% discount).

Some reviews of the light have been negative, saying that the clamp (base) doesn't hold the light at all. Well, I think this is because they didn't read the instructions. You need to know how to do it right. Fixing the clamp to the handlebars doesn't need any tools and is quite fast, but you can easily do it wrong. I thought that the clamp looked a bit flimsy, but it is actually quite good, keeping the light firmly in place even when there are bumps on the road.

The best thing about the light are the quick and easy controls, the long duration of the battery (6 hours at max brightness and 45 hours at min), and the convenient shape of the beam. I used the max brightness only in the dark parts of the road, where there are no street lights, and elsewhere the min setting was good enough.

The light proved its worth already today. We had strong winds during the night, above 10 m/s. Debris from trees had fallen to the ground. One quite thick piece of a tree branch was laying across the road in a dark spot where there were no street lights.

I rode the bicycle for almost nine hours this week, and I'm feeling tired. Well, there is time to recover during the weekend.

(Posting title is from the poem The Buried Life by Matthew Arnold.)

Thursday, November 26, 2015

But night still nipped at our heels

The photographs were taken on October 25th.

Today was a dark day, and I got somewhat wet when commuting home by bicycle.

I looked at climate statistics measured at Helsinki-Vantaa airport in 1981-2000, to see how many hours of sunshine there are in a month. For November the average is 37 hours. The highest amount was 79 hours (in 1988) and lowest 12 hours (in 2000). For December the numbers are even less: 26 hours average, between max 49 hours and min 6 hours.

Compare this with July, for which the amount of sunshine was at average 291 hours, max 405 and min 210.

(Posting title is from the poem The Future of Terror by Matthea Harvey.)

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Having so soon forgotten the sharpness

The photographs were taken on October 25th.

The night before yesterday the temperature dropped to -7 °C. Today we had +5 °C.

(Posting title is from the poem Euphoria by Sina Queyras.)

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Those that fix their eager eyes

These photographs were taken on October 25th, enjoying the autumn colors.

This morning there was a little bit of snow on the road, and thus it was less dark than it has been for some while. Also, the snow muted the noise from the studded winter tires, except in places where they had put salt on the road and the snow had melted.

(Posting title is from the poem Lines written under the conviction that it is not wise to read Mathematics in November after one’s fire is out by James Clerk Maxwell.)

Monday, November 23, 2015

I have cleared this space for you, for you, for you

The photographs were taken on October 24th, north of lake Myllyjärvi, enjoying the autumn colors.

I commuted by bicycle today. There was a little bit of frost and ice on the road, but mostly the road surface was quite dry, and there wasn't much need for the studded winter tires.

In the front I have a Nokian Hakka SW240 studded tire, which has 240 studs, and in the back a Nokian Hakka A10 tire, which has only 72 studs. The SW240 tire has lasted a long time, but a Nokian Hakka W106 tire which I used in the back lasted only a short while before breaking apart. I hope A10 will be better, at least it seems that the studs are better positioned so that the tire may last longer when it will be mostly used on asphalt roads.

Tomorrow the weather will be colder, -7 °C in the morning.

I had a look at photographs taken in January, 2010, almost six years ago. I was quite surprised of the quality and content of the photographs, they felt better that those I’m taking right now. One reason may be that there was snow in the photographs, and I enjoy the snow season, it inspires me.

On the other hand, the camera I was using was the Panasonic LX3, which got me really interested into taking photographs, and I think the curiosity and interest in learning is visible in the photographs. It may be that I’m nowadays a bit too passive, a bit too jaded, and it shows in the photographs.

(Posting title is from the poem sweet reader, flanneled and tulled by Olena Kalytiak Davis.)

Sunday, November 22, 2015

And, into clear perfection, gradual bliss

These photographs were taken on October 24th at lake Myllyjärvi.

We got a little bit of snow yesterday and today, but only a little of it is remaining. Yesterday I installed studded winter tires to the car. Some of the bolts were rather difficult to open, but in the end all went well. Today I'm planning to change tires to the bicycle as well. The weather forecast promises slippery road conditions for the next week.

(Posting title is from the poem The Seasons: Winter by James Thomson.)

Saturday, November 21, 2015

That too is a form

These photographs were taken in Helsinki on October 22nd, while commuting by bus.

The length of day is now 7 h 4 min. It has been clouded, and I don't remember when it was last that I saw the sun.

(Posting title is from the poem Intimate Letters by Rosanna Warren.)