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San Francisco 2009 Chinese New Year Parade.

Under here.

February 7, 2009

I Were
Saturday. It's good luck for the Lunar New Year maybe, the sun shining brightly, the forecast for sun and clouds but no rain before tomorrow. Best to be upbeat as the camera batteries charge in the bedroom and I sit here thinking what to bring to shoot the parade later this afternoon in San Francisco.

A run last night to the supermarket for cat food, sake, cheese and crackers; the sake, cheese and crackers to finish out the evening with comfort food and a buzz. Nice, a late evening, with something of a buzz. Can't do it every night (they say), but certainly there must be exceptions for Friday nights and weekends? I would think so. Life is too short and complicated to give up on the buzz. Here in Oakland.

That's not clever and it makes no sense. You really want to start with something like that?

Of course. I start every morning with something like that.

Later. The batteries are charged, the camera bag is packed, I'm catching the three o'clock bus this afternoon which will get me to BART and then San Francisco before four. Almost two hours of shooting is about right before I hop on BART to be picked up by Mr. E in Oakland for the trip to the gig in Santa Rosa. It's noon now, the sky overcast, but the clouds threatening only in what look to be spots, one of which is currently overhead. Will it rain? Could it rain? Sure, but we don't think about that (except to carry protection for the cameras and secondarily the person). A sensible approach.

Much later. I'm going to have to change my approach to the Chinese New Year Parade. I was going to set out with two cameras, one with a telephoto zoom and one in a camera bag with a medium zoom and a strobe to carry over my shoulder. I do most, say 90% of this kind of shooting, with the telephoto zoom and this has pretty much been my standard package. Today, however, having returned from a walk down beyond the farmer's market to have lunch just before leaving for the city, I found myself too tired to pack the second camera in the camera bag and decided to set out with the single camera and telephoto slung over my shoulder. Fine. No problem, I've done this many times with good results, but boy howdy was I tired after an hour and a half of shooting and boy howdy did I manage to get zip for pictures.

I'd forgotten, as I did last year, most of the parade participants are kids, high school age and younger, who show up in their band marching uniforms. OK, a number of them show up in their dojo outfits doing martial arts moves, but most of them are very young and I don't shoot young. My fault. My mistake. I did the same thing last year.

There was still Mr. S's gig up in Santa Rosa, you're saying, how did that go? Well it went very well as Mr. E, it turned out, was running late and I, tired and crapped out I, decided to dodge that particular bullet and spent the rest of the evening with my feet up watching Korean soaps. I could have used a little sake to go with them, but believe me, I was in no condition to run by a sake shop. I was pooped.

You were?

I were.

The photograph was taken today at the San Francisco Chinese New Year Parade with a Nikon D3 mounted with an 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR lens at 1/800th second, f 2.8, ISO 100.