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Here In Oakland

Art & Life


June 1, 2014

Sounds About Right
Sunday. To bed early enough. I did do some reading, but more newspaper articles on the tablet than unfinished magazine pieces. Still, a bit of both. To sleep at about the right time, up with the alarm, the morning overcast but the sun on the way. Another Oakland day, but now in June. Time passes.

Off to breakfast to read the papers, the excitement for the morning seeing that gas prices had gone up by two cents a gallon. The local papers had been predicting they'd drop as the summer evolved, but they've remained stuck at the same price since the the articles were written and now they've gone up instead of down. Life on a carbon diet.

No idea what I'll do today, don't really care. We won't moan on about it or, at least, write about it until, well, later. Tomorrow. Hopeless, I know, but the mood is good and the day starts well.

Later. No nap, but a bath and then a walk over to the lake with a 135mm lens on the camera. Lots of people about, a picture of Hank swimming out with a group of gulls, a Snowy Egret fishing alone near the shore, as I've always found them fishing solitarily near a shore.

Finally, checking out the geese along the path, I turned up to the sidewalk near the white columns and found the goslings resting by the sidewalk. A couple of less than good pictures, as they were in the shade and the shutter speed noted in the image was down at 1/50th of a second, too slow for a 135mm lens. Stupid, but at least a mistake I don't usually make. We've not yet degenerated to a point we do these things often. Knock on wood. Knock on whatever it might take.

Back to the apartment to go through the pictures, deciding to go out again with the 70-200mm lens this time and set the camera's ISO sensitivity higher to take care of the shutter speed. But most of the geese and no goslings were to be found.

OK, I was out by the lake, I'd been thinking of going to the 7-11 look-alike to get something to eat and decided Doritos and bean dip would do the trick, but they were sold out of bean dip when I arrived. Not for the first time. I'm evidently not their only customer with a taste for bean dip.

So on around the corner at Perkins to have an apple pastry and coffee at a table out in front of Coffee With A Beat, the idea to continue on after to the fenced bird sanctuary area when I was finished. I was outside, I was fed, the head was (almost) clear, the day was nice. Right? Onward! Pictures!


I do seem to have to argue with myself to get out and do anything anymore. At least that's what I write about here. Anyway: pictures of Black-crowned Night-herons, there are always Black-crowned Night-herons in the bird sanctuary, a walk on then along the shore to the white columned pergola, keeping an eye out for the goslings.

No goslings but lots of geese, gulls and people who were sitting, grilling, sun bathing, walking, reading, running and playing guitar. I was taken by the Bose portable sound system (inputs for microphone and three instruments it says on the web), a product I hadn't known existed, as well as the portable solar unit that was providing the power.

If I could find a rationale for a solar unit I'd get one, but having a backup source to say charge the cameras or boil water after an earthquake that didn't kill you when it happened (the most likely event to cut the power for more than say a day) makes no sense.

Lay in some food, lay in some water, yes; but a solar unit just in case? Not likely, although that wouldn't deter me under a puckish moon and the sake was just right. Of course. It's just, you know, we do have a budget we at least say we follow, pretend to follow, cameras aside.

Boys and their toys.

Life lived as a cliché.

Evening. A Foyle's War at eight that I've seen before, but that may not be a problem. An evening of guitar and a war I've seen before. Sounds about right.

The photo up top was taken at the San Francisco Carnaval Parade with a Nikon D4s mounted with an 70-200mm f/2.8 VR II Nikkor lens.