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Here In Oakland

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May 20, 2012

Thrown By The Trees
Sunday. I crapped out a bit on the guitar last night, but got to bed reasonably early feeling pretty good (and tired). Up without the alarm after six, to breakfast and back on a bright sun filled morning taking another snapshot of the Vietnamese restaurant's stacked sidewalk tables on the way to the car. I'll get it right, one of these days, but more through luck favored sloth than artifice on my part. We know these things, best not to pretend we don't.

Home now, the Bay to Breakers well under way in San Francisco. Such is life. Let's see what else we can come up with this morning to make up for it. Got to do something, a not overly upset voice is saying, so we'll see. How long since I've taken a bus over to Berkeley? Been a while. Timidity is a part of it, not sure how large a part, but significant, huddled down here in my own well walked surroundings.

Heading to hell in a hand basket?

Nothing so dramatic. More a journey with a flask of sake at hand while sitting in a chair watching a police procedural in a strange language I don't understand, the volume not so loud as to disturb the neighbors.

Later. It has been a while since I've been along Telegraph by the university. It's changed. New buildings. Old stores gone, new stores taking their place.

A bus to Broadway and 20th, another bus, the 1, to Telegraph and Bancroft to walk back along the sidewalk by the campus and turn down Telegraph. The various street sellers were just beginning to set up their tables, not all that many of them, not all that many people on the street, but I walked here and there through the usual haunts noting the changes. The parking I last parked in is now filled be a large, almost completed, student residence building. Where did that come from?

Some pictures, I was at least into the shooting, but nothing of any real interest came out of them, having gone through the lot now on the computer. Still, a good outing for all that. I'd made some adjustments to the camera that were worth trying, adjusted one or two back to where they'd been when I saw the results.

Two street people in a good mood stopped me to point out something they thought I should shoot; one, saying he'd been a photographer back in the days when he worked for NASA, wanting to know the range of the zoom lens covered and the (the almost always asked) number of pixels. If he'd once worked for NASA he's gone through some changes over these intervening years. As I said, however, their mood was good and they seemed to be having fun.

Anyway, a long walk this morning that ran well into the afternoon, taking BART back from Berkeley to Oakland and then a connecting 12 bus back home. I was tired, lay down for an hour or so after. I keep saying all this is good exercise and I'm sure it is, certainly I don't get physically tired, muscle tired from the walking, but I do get pooped. Or, perhaps better described by the more technical term “wrecked”. I don't think it's unusual, getting tired from being out and about coming on sooner than it did say ten years ago. You become more easily tired as you age I've always been told, but reading a piece in the paper last week talking about Hepatitis C, how, if you were a baby boomer, it might be good to get tested, I decided to check. Along, I'd guess, with the ten thousand others who read the same story.

Hepatitis C symptoms are more over the top than anything I've been experiencing - tiredness, aches, pains - although you can evidently carry it for decades before it shows up, turns into liver cancer and kills you dead. You can pick it up through blood if you've received a blood transfusion prior to 1992 when they first started testing. I had three or four in the mid to late eighties when I was suffering from an internal bleeding problem they were never able to identify. Hell, I may have already had one done I've long forgotten, not sure what it was about, but I'll ask. Hup. If I haven't forgotten by then. Which I might.

Evening. A quick run around and down onto the street in front of my apartment and then on to the lake to photograph the shadows thrown by the annular eclipsing sun through the trees, each blob of light taking an annular eclipse's crescent shape. A grey van parked just across the street was one of the better displays as well as the closed garage door beside it.

The small groups of people out on the grass beside the lake observing it on sheets of white paper and through cardboard pinhole cameras might have wondered what the idiot was up to taking photographs of the shadows thrown by the trees, but none of them asked. People do all kinds of odd things in Oakland.

San Francisco How Weird Street Faire taken with a Nikon D4 mounted with a 70-200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR II lens.