Feeling Okay

My stomach is okay today. No issues at all. I am almost willing to declare that whatever started going wrong two days ago, and then went really seriously wrong yesterday, has passed. It’s 3:13pm and I’m an hour passed lunch. I have taken in 40 ounces of liquid and 56.86 grams of protein. Everything is on pace for a successful day.

So the question left to me is, did I do something wrong to cause my problems over the last two days, or was it a bug that I possibly caught from Harry as he was sick to his stomach all weekend. I was going to assume it was something I did wrong until Jen told me that she’s feeling sick to her stomach today. I think it might have been a bug after all. That almost makes me feel better about the whole thing, other than the fact Jen is feeling sick today, which sucks completely.

I am feeling well enough tonight to go out and run an errand for Jen, even though it bums me out on an unrelated level. She bought something from her favorite computer/electronics store recently but it needs to be returned. I am going to return it for her. The bummer part is that the store is in Cambridge, right down the street from Harvard Square, and right across the river from Boston’s Back Bay. I have been wanting to take a camera to both of those places for months now but haven’t had a chance. I could do it tonight but it will be dark and I won’t have time to stop and that makes it a two strikes and you’re out situation. Maybe I’ll be able to take some pics from stop lights. I’ll bring my DSLR and put it in auto mode, just in case. I won’t bring film though.

Speaking of pictures, the weather is going to be crappy tomorrow. No sunrise pics this time. It’s not supposed to rain until mid-morning though, so maybe I’ll take the film camera out to a couple of places around town. We’ll see. The DSLR will go to Vermont with me on Sunday but I don’t think the film camera will. We’re not planning on spending much time in Burlington so there won’t be many opportunities for picture taking.

On a final, also unrelated note, our bathroom has a floor again:


Where To… Again?

I find myself asking this multiple times each weekend. If the weather is going to be good tomorrow around sunrise, where do my camera and I go?

Well, the weather is supposed to be good tomorrow so I’m asking yet again. Boston is the big beacon on the horizon, but I just don’t want to deal with parking and getting around town.

Maybe head back to Plum Island and hit a couple of the spots that I saw but didn’t stop at on Friday.

There’s a lighthouse in Gloucester. I think there might actually be two of them. It’s an hour drive, but if I’m on the road early enough it could be kinda cool. I don’t know.

There’s still the Concord River at Minuteman National Park. There’s another pond in Tewksbury and another river walk in Lowell.

I really don’t know what to do. What a weird feeling.

Packed and Ready

My camera bag is packed, my broken tripod is folded up, and I even have a sweatshirt and clothes laid out. We are goin’ shootin’ in the morn.

But where? I’m thinking Salisbury Beach (sunrise at 6:18am) or downtown Lowell or downtown Concord. I haven’t decided yet.

All that’s left to do is set an alarm on my AppleWatch that hopefully won’t wake up my beloved Jennifer… and decide where to go.

Boston? Naw, not this time. Salisbury Beach and Lowell? Hmmmm. We’ll find out when I actually get there.

Out Shooting Tomorrow?

The sun comes up at 6:20 am tomorrow and weather kitty tells me it’s going to be mostly sunny. Tomorrow sounds like a perfect morning to grab the camera and go shoot stuff.

But what?

I’m thinking of following the Merrimack River into Dracut and Lowell. I’m not sure though. Maybe I’ll go to Forrest Lake in Methuen, or what about Long Pond in Tewksbury? I don’t want to go too far, but I kinda want to get out of town. I don’t know. It seems like a waste to just stay in bed, but that’s usually what I end up doing.

The weather looks good on Saturday morning too. Maybe Salisbury Beach at sunrise again? It’s been two months since I’ve visited the ocean. It might happen.

I’m going a little crazy with all of this, aren’t I.

Where to Next?

I’m not planning on shooting any pitchers tomorrow. The weather is supposed to clear up, but I don’t have it in me. I’ll be ready to go in a couple of days though.

But where should I go? There’s a couple of spots in Lowell. The river walk next to the hockey rink, and pretty much anything downtown. I’m going to be disappointed though because I’m pretty sure they got rid of the cobblestones. Downtown has a sort of 19th century nightmare vibe to it though, so I’ll still go. But when? No idea. I think a Sunday at sunrise would be best. We will see.

Billerica center has some nice things. A little park, the old church. Stuff like that. Concord is nearby and it has one of my favorite places, Minuteman National Park. I’m hesitant to drive that far for a river view when we are balls deep in a brutal drought. That might wait for the fall. Also, my tripod is broken (it doesn’t tilt anymore) so long exposures of the Concord River might not work out. We will see.

Boston. Cambridge. I put in for a couple of days off later in the month and one of them may include an early morning in the city. Weather permitting. We will see.

Is there anything in Salem, NH? Dracut, MA? There has to be, right?

Where else can I go? I might have to ask The Google. We will see.


What do I want to do tomorrow? Besides the 0.75% of a band practice. I don’t know.

Visit my mother? I could use a little of that. I saw dad today but it’s been a week since I’ve seen mom.

Work on the 50 songs in 90 days thing? Maybe. Probably not.

Get up at sunrise and mess around with cameras again? That would be fun, but where would I go? I’ve hit my favorite spots in town. Maybe downtown Lowell? Maybe the river walk in Lowell? Maybe the Shawsheen river in Tewksbury? I know a couple of good spots, but if the Shawsheen there is as dry as the Spicket here it might not be worth it. Boston? Too far away.

Stay in bed constantly refreshing eBay all day? I’m still the highest bidder but there are 22.5 hours remaining.

Pet the kitty all day?

Finish Umbrella Academy and start Stranger Things or Orville or Westworld or….

I don’t know. In the immortal words of Traffic, from their second record, Who Knows What Tomorrow May Bring?

Manual Mode Part 1

I am about to post a bunch of pictures from this morning’s manual mode bonanza. I am going to break it into three posts. One will be downtown Methuen and the top of the Spicket Falls Dam, The second will be the Methuen Rail Trail and the Bird Sanctuary. The third will be Walnut Grove cemetery.

Here’s the downtown and the dam pics. I don’t think I will give any details, just pics.

All of these were shot with my Nikon D90 in manual mode because I am insane.

I think this is my favorite of the whole day.

Manual Mode Bonanza

I went around town today with my DSLR, shooting in Manual mode like a boss. Well… mostly. I kept the auto focus on because my eyes were feeling kinda funny. I learned that my 18-55mm lens only goes to f5.6. The 50mm lens on Dad’s camera goes to f2. So the comparisons might not be that interesting. I basically kept it set at f5.6 with the ISO at 200 (because the roll of film I used the other day was 200) and then just played with the shutter speed to react to the light meter. Probably not the best idea, but give me a break, I am a total rookie at this. I’m just amazed that the pics came out at all.

I will post more of the results later, but there were one or two spots where I took a shot in Manual and then took the same shot in Auto. What do you think?

Manual mode, f/5.6, 1/200
Auto mode, f/9.0, 1/80

Another Round Tomorrow

I think I have decided that tomorrow morning, around sunrise time, I am going to retrace my steps from yesterday’s mini photo walk around Methuen. This time with my digital camera in Manual mode. Weather and sleepiness permitting, of course.

The idea will be to compare the results with the digital camera to the film camera. Assuming the film shots actually get developed and actually come out okay.

I’m kinda going off the deep end here, aren’t I.

Photo Walk Redux

If you thought that I was going to post a summary of today’s film photography extravaganza before I had the film safely removed and ready to drop off at a developer then you’re just nuts.

I am knocking on every piece of wood in the house as I say this, but it went okay today… I think. Who knows? We won’t know until I get the actual photos back from wherever CVS sends them, but from what I can tell everything is okay.

I retraced most of yesterday’s steps. I didn’t go to Canobie Lake in Windham. I didn’t want to drive that far if it wasn’t a perfectly clear sky. Also, I was gun shy and didn’t want to go too far from home.

I started at the Methuen Rail Trail. I did not see any Canadian geese today, but I did see people. There was a couple out walking their dog, I waited in the car until they passed by, and another person walking away from me who was way in the distance. I went to that little bridge over the Spicket again. The river was perfectly calm and really low. This spot is within the bird sanctuary but I didn’t see any wildlife to speak of.

July 1st
Obligatory iPhone pic for the Flickr 365 album

I then went downtown. I took one picture of the sidewalk where the businesses have their signs hanging off the buildings and then bolted to the Spicket Falls Dam again. I took a bunch of pictures there. Probably too many. Today’s roll had 36 exposures (Kodak ColorPlus 36/200) and after 12 years with my Nikon D90 and a memory card that can hold over 2,100 full res images, the idea of having to limit myself is kind of hard to wrap my brain around.

After I finished with the dam I went back to the record store to try and get the sidewalk from the other direction. I made sure to get one of the big clock too because it’s me we’re talking about here.

Next I went back to the Tenney Castle site and took a bunch of pictures of what’s left of the courtyard. I took one of the long dead water fountain that I think might have a blurry background. Fingers crossed on that, right?

This was the end of the picture taking as I ran out of film. I went back to the car, holding my breath the whole way. The next step is to unload the camera and that’s where my stupidity turned everything to cow shit yesterday. Picture me walking on eggshells, spiritually speaking (or some shit like that).

I made one other stop before I went home. I saw a flyer online a few days ago for a July 4th event where the Methuen Historical Society (I think) is going to read the Declaration of Independence at the oldest burial site in the city. I went to that site to see if it might be a good place for some pictures, but it’s fenced in and locked up. It looks like there might have even been barbed wire at some point. Yikes.

So back home I went. I left at 5:33 and got home at 6:25. Out of pure paranoia, I did all of my morning routine stuff before sitting down to try and unload the camera. Once that was out of the way I came downstairs to my desk and took care of things. As I mentioned yesterday, there is no way I will ever unload the camera again without having the manual open in front of me (yes, this is an exaggeration in the long term, but I sure as hell had that puppy open today). I read through the steps and did it. No issues that I know of. I have a little zip lock baggy in one of my desk drawers that holds finished rolls. It’s the only roll in the bag right now. I then took the third and final roll from my Walgreens experience last weekend and loaded it up. The camera is good to go.

Sigh of relief. No signs of any mechanical failures. If anything goes wrong from this point it’s because I suck at photography, not because I did something stupid or because there is something wrong with the camera. Sigh of relief indeed.

I actually need to get my pantoprazole prescription refilled (for the final time ever, I hope) so when I go to CVS to pick that up I can also drop off the film. Seems like a decent deal.

Okay, the photography experience for today has come to a close. Time to make a protein shake and walk for half an hour while watching The Umbrella Academy. Bye for now, oh my readers and only friends.