This item on my 28 To Do List was meant to be an ongoing one. This one was meant to inspire me to go on as MANY photo-taking excursions as possible. A week and a half into my 28th year, I think I’m doing pretty darn well. (I’ve also finished rolls on both of my film cameras. While that’s not strictly an excursion, it goes along with the whole spirit of #24, I think.)
Last Friday, Pete, Sheryl and I went out to western NJ to take photos at the 27th Annual New Jersey Festival of Ballooning. We stood at the edge of the farm where she keeps her horses and took pictures through the haze as the balloons inflated and gently rose up and floated away in groups of two and three, until there were well more than 20 visible at once. Hot air balloons are surprisingly soothing, the way they move about so gracefully. It was also almost nostalgic, because my grandmother lives in that general part of New Jersey, and there were times visiting her as a kid that we’d see hot air balloons flying over her house. So that part was cool, too.
Then on Saturday, I met up with a bunch of my flickr friends at Coney Island in Brooklyn, a place I’ve never been, despite hearing about it during Mets games (“The Cyclones are Brooklyn!”). We ate hot dogs at the original Nathan’s, and then walked up and down the boardwalk, taking in the sights, and thousands and thousands of scantily clad people. Then the skies opened up; we heard a wave of screams as the folks on the beach ran toward the boardwalk, and we were all drenched within seconds. (No camera equipment was harmed, thank goodness.) We took cover under a cheery white and red striped tent, splashing in puddles, and once the rain stopped, we recommenced our walking on the boardwalk. We took pictures in a photobooth, we took photos of and with each other, we couldn’t quite understand the wacky weather, and mostly we just enjoyed each other’s company. The weather sucked, yes. My shoes and socks and jeans were still quite damp when I got back. But it was worth it.
And then this past Wednesday, Pete had an extra ticket to see the Daily Show, so we decided to make a photo-taking day of it. Did we realize it was going to rain again? Well, maybe. But we couldn’t let the tickets go to waste, so we brought an umbrella (okay, Pete brought an umbrella; I didn’t want to carry one around so I stuck with my superpowered gor-tex raincoat) and figured we’d suck it up. We went to the Intrepid and managed to take a whole lot of hurried shots as the rain began, trying desperately not to slip on the wet deck of the aircraft carrier. We then headed down to the hangar deck, where the main museumy parts are located. I didn’t bother reading any of the descriptions, but just took pictures of things that looked cool. I also couldn’t help thinking that a visit to the Intrepid would have been just as much fun with my dad, who could have explained all of the planes and helicopters for me. It was an amazing place, even if we did get totally soaked walking over to the Daily Show studio.
So all in all, my first few photo-taking excursions were fantastic. Let’s just hope future ones don’t all involve weird weather and waterlogged sneakers. Seriously.