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Here In Oakland

Art & Life


August 19, 2015


Wednesday. Last night pretty much a duplicate of the night before: lights out by ten to awaken with the alarm, what I'd call a decent night's rest. No argument with that, just noting. Up and out to walk to breakfast, adding another “memory slip” to the list as I was photographing the pandorea vine.

I'd decided to experiment, play with the exposure as I've done so many times in the past, but forgot while standing there shooting, where the button I'd just pushed was located on the camera. I'd pressed it maybe fifteen seconds before, then taken a picture, then stood there like a dunce trying to remember what the button looked like and its location.

A first of its kind. Weird. One part of me standing there fumbling, another part looking on and thinking “weird”. I'm assuming this isn't unusual at my age, but who knows?

Later. I've been pretty careful when carrying a camera, keeping to well traveled areas with people about, but my luck ran out today walking along Broadway across from the Paramount theater.

Running up from behind, a thin, dressed head to toe in black, face covered, young man stripped the camera from my right hand (the strap wrapped around the wrist) and ran off down the street. I wasn't hurt, other than what is now a puffy knuckle, but the camera (D4s with 24-120mm lens) is gone.

One thing. In stripping the camera he dropped a smart phone, I watched it hit the sidewalk and break in the seconds as he was stripping the camera from my arm. I was able to retrieve it and give it to the police who arrived to take the report. So maybe some luck if it was indeed his.

Anyway, now we see if all this specialized camera theft insurance I've been carrying for years has been worth it. All things considered, I've learned, without physical damage (losing an arm or a head), to no longer carry a camera in open sight anymore on the street. Better to learn this way than many another. Still, no fun.

Oh, and I had taken Latham Square pictures, did pick up the prescriptions (and got a flu shot) and had a chicken Caesar salad at the bagel shop, all this well before noon. I'd missed the bus and so was walking along Broadway thinking I'd walk all the way home when it happened. Hmm. Luck. My number came up.

Later still. Phoned in the theft report to the insurance agency (I'm not looking forward to their idea of what that camera was worth, knowing what it's going to take to replace it). So that's started. We'll listen to the news reports and take it easy for the rest of the day. No need to push it. The forefinger joint on my right hand is a bit more puffed and discolored, but so far, so good.

Evening. Nothing on television (surprise!) and so to bed and the tablet. Warm without being too warm I'm guessing, so let's see if we can sleep off the events of the day with a decent night's sleep. I'm sure whatever I'm feeling isn't yet the norm and today's incident will take more time to internalize and evaluate.

The photo up top was taken at the Oakland Art & Soul Festival with a Nikon D4s mounted with a 70-200mm f 2.8 VR II Nikkor lens.