Tuesday, January 31, 2012

An accident

It was a cold morning and despite my gloves, hat and scarf I was cold on my walk to the BOE (Board of Education, like a school district). I had to pick up the car so I could use it to get to some of my schools that are outside the area where I actually live.

My mittens are a little bit big for my hands and despite being size small, I often feel like I’m trying to do things while wearing oven mitts – big and awkward.

As I began to open the garage door, my purse began to slip down my arm. With an oven mitt-ed hand, I tried to save it. Despite my attempt, my mittens did not want to go with it.

My purse hit the ground.

I didn’t think anything of it, because I didn’t hear any crashes or cracks. Then I stopped outside to take a photo of this mail box, I mean how often, in Portland, do we need to dig our mailboxes out of a pile of snow that is twice as tall?

2012-01-31 Kita Ochiai 003

As I spun the zoom to get just the right angle, I noticed a shadow that seemed to move with my lens. Why, I wondered, was there a shadow on the lens? (see photo above)

And then I realized that in dropping my purse this morning, I also dropped my camera! < insert thoughts of: "I haven't even had this camera for a year!", "Do I replace the lens or get a 50mm prime to make up for the small amount of lost range?", etc. >

I headed inside to inspect the damage. It seemed, from me looking at the camera, that the only thing I did was destroy the filter.

2012-01-31 Kita Ochiai 007

As I left, I went to take some more pictures. It was a gorgeous day and I was in one of the prettiest areas of town. I went to zoom in and my once 18-55 mm lens had decided it wanted to be a 18-47mm lens – it wouldn't zoom all the way in.

After another small panic, I zoomed all the way out and then back in. Thankfully, when I zoomed back in, it fixe the problem and I haven’t had a problem since.

So glad I followed my friend, N’s advice and kept a filter on my camera!

2012-01-31 Kita Ochiai 023

Inspecting the damage:

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In the end, it seems the only thing I really damaged was a filter. Thankfully, I had a mix up in lens sizes when I bought my camera and accidentally bought two in the size my camera calls for. I was back in business after a quick stop at home!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

366 Project–Week 2

During the second week of the year, I had my last few days at home and then returned to Japan.

2012-01-08 Rhumans 007

(8/366) My sister and my good friend J. We had my dad’s side of the family plus a few friends over so I could see everyone while I was home. It was a blast.

2012-01-09 Family 003

(9/366) We played Family Cranium that a friend gave us for Christmas. Family Cranium was loads of fun. Here E is drawing something with her eyes closed that my dad has to guess. She’s a really great artist, even with her eyes closed.

2012-01-10 Goodbye 071

(10/366) The view as we left LAX and headed for SFO – I loved all the lines of water in this particular shot. On the way home I got the joy of flying down to LAX and then SFO before finally flying out for Haneda (Tokyo). It was a LONG day of flying.

2012-01-11 Airport 003

(11/366) This day only really existed for me on the plane. Finding the outlets that are always supposedly on planes was pretty exciting. I saw the guy in the row across from me pulling out his cord and I asked what he was going to plug it in to. Turns out they put these in a super sensible spot – under the arm rest!

2012-01-12 Arrival 006

(12/366) Taking off from Haneda Airport (Tokyo). After an incredibly long layover in Haneda Airport, we finally left. Haneda does not like to share their electricity – there were a couple of desk spots, for using your computer, but no other plugs. If you’re like me and have a computer with very little battery life then you’re out of luck.

2012-01-13 Lunch 001

(13/366) On my first day back to work, the office lady and I went out to lunch. I don’t know what the stuff in the container was – some sort of veggies that were stringy like Natto, but actually tasted good.

2012-01-14 Luggage 001

(14/366) My luggage came! In Japan, people rarely travel with lots of luggage. Often, they send it via the post to wherever they are heading so they don’t have to deal with it on trains. When I arrived in Haneda, I sent my luggage ahead.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

366 Project–Week 1

I decided to start a 366 project this year (same as a 365 project, but plus a day for leap year). This project consists of taking a photo everyday over the course of a year and posting them.

I started on January 1, but due to the fact that I had a very limited 3 weeks at home, I didn’t get around to doing any editing/sorting of photos done while I was at home.

2012-01-01 SWR 001

(1/366) First photo taken of the new year. These are my friends who we’ve deemed “The Crazies.” Our favorite kind of New Year’s Party consists of playing lots of games.

2012-01-02 Powells 005

(2/366) A visit to the world’s largest book store! Powells, nick named “the City of Books” takes up an entire city block for it’s main store. It also claims that it’s the world’s largest new, used, rare and out of print book store. It also has a nice little spot across the street – that section is filled with the nerdy, science books. And I looked very smart walking in to find a book about Lightroom.

2012-01-03 Target 014

(3/366) A family favorite, sausage spinach loaf. Not sure where my mom got this recipe, but she’s been making it since I was a kid. It’s pretty simple – roll out a rhodes bread dough (you could probably even make your own dough); layer spinach, jack cheese and sausage on it; roll it back up into a loaf shape and bake!

2012-01-04 Newberg 012

(4/366) Tacos al pastor from the taco stand in my college town. The taco stand might be my favorite restaurant in the world.

2012-01-05 Sisters 002

(5/366) My sister and brother-in-law took me out for breakfast. J’s cocoa came with more whip than I’ve ever seen on a mug of cocoa.

2012-01-06 Air Museum 091

(6/366) For his Christmas present, I took my dad to the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum. My dad is a Vietnam Vet (as you can tell by the stripes on his hat) and wanted to see helicopters, of which they only had a few in the main museum. Thankfully we asked before we went over to the space part and they told us that they were in the space museum’s area.

2012-01-07 Em Date 014

(7/366) Took my littlest sister for a “sister date” shortly before I left. We played lots of games and went for ice cream. This game was our favorite. It was in Japanese and I could understand a lot of what it said, but they also had good pictures so E had no problem understanding either.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Where did the time go?

I'm sitting here and it's January 7th in one minute. Where did the time go?

I thought 3 weeks would be so much time with my family and yet, here I am almost at the end! I'm not ready to leave yet.

Guess it's another lesson in having to remember to live in the present and enjoy every moment!

More about my travels soon. I've taken tons of pictures with family and friends this year. I'm sure lots of them will end up back on my blog when I get back.