Friday, June 20, 2014

We need a vacation


Here I am, hunkered down on a rock on the Big Sur coast of California in the summer of 2002, drawing a bead on a seagull with my Nikon F5.

It was, at one time, Nikon’s premiere film camera. You can buy one on Ebay these days for under $250 thanks to digital photography obsoleting film. (The fastest and most rugged 35mm SLR Nikon ever made, the F5 cost about $2,300 when it was introduced in 1996. I bought mine used for considerably less. It weighed more than 3 pounds and, with a heavy telephoto lens mounted, was a lot to carry around.)

We bought our first Nikon digital SLR, a D100, in late 2002 and retired our film SLRs for good.

But I digress.

We have been hemorrhaging money since Maria left the Sun a year ago this month and she has been working hard for little pay since December when the fall semester ended at Black River Technical College and she started being a substitute teacher.

Our last vacation was in December, 2012 when we spent a week at a posh resort in Orlando, Fla. for $250 and a commitment to endure a timeshare sales pitch.

Things are looking up now that she has a job as office manager for a dental practice. It makes better use of her considerable skills as a manager and her 20 years’ experience as a dental assistant in an earlier life in Indiana. And it pays better than substitute teaching with the added benefit that she doesn’t have to spend all day with little germbag kids crawling all over her.

I haven’t been back to my beloved Big Sur since July, 2010 and I’m hankering to sit on my favorite rock just south of the Big Creek Bridge on Calif. 1 and smell the salty sea air, perfumed by dill and other coastal wildflowers.

I don’t expect to make it this year, but maybe in 2015 when the BMW MOA rally is in Missoula, Mont. – a good excuse to keep going west to visit my son Sean in his new digs on Sauvie Island northwest of Portland, Ore. and ride down the Oregon and California coasts.

In the meantime, we have a trip to Indiana planned for the near future to visit Maria’s folks.


Here I am during that 2002 trip, adding cream to my coffee on the deck of the Rocky Point Restaurant south of Monterey. As you can see, there was a brisk ocean breeze complicating the pouring process.

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