Jack of all trades, master of none

Thought for the day…”If you cannot do great things, then do small things in a great way”.

“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score”

Just been watching some people using a drone to capture photos, something else that I would like to try.   Recently I was using TWO cameras at the same time, one for stills and one for video.    Had I had an action camera then I would have probably used that as well.    And there is an idea in my head to try underwater photography too, and the wonderful macro photos that I see in the magazines have fired my imagination too.     But I am wondering now if I should SPECIALIZE, instead of trying so many areas.     Video is a different matter, needing tripods, more editing and also a lot more preparation, no doubt drone photography and underwater would not be so easy either.     So the question is, should I just concentrate on getting good still photos with one camera.   Jack of all trades and master of none????

And some street colour from the Slovenian capital of Ljublana for the photo today….


and another photo from the archives….before the storm, Longyearbyen, Svalbard Spitsbergen.



Two sides of Oslo, Norway

Thought for the day….”Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it”

“Be nice to people on the way up because you will meet them again on the way down”

Today’s photo is of the Opera House in the Norwegian capital city of Oslo.  Opened in 2008, the shape is supposed to resemble an iceberg.   The cost was a staggering 4.1 billion NOK, or about USD 720 million.    A new public library is to be built nearby as well as several office blocks.  Despite the wealth, the streets nearby have many beggars and drug addicts, as well as rubbish and grafitti.   Even nearby the Opera House, there are parts of the city that are run-down and are dirty, a fact that often surprises visitors to Oslo.    It is known as the heroin capital of Europe, with 248 deaths from drugs in 2010.   Again, visitors are often surprised by how obvious drug use and drug dealing on the streets is, something which does not fit in with the image of clean, well-run Norway.     Reality is sometimes very different.


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and another photo from the archives…a dramatic sunrise in Pembroke, New Zealand.



Deep Thinking

Thought for the day…”The only place that success comes before work is in the dictionary”

“It’s not that I am smart, just that I stay with problems longer”  (Albert Einstein).

It is sad and also annoying to see how  in New Zealand, that a MINORITY is now trying to take control of more and more.     Many people believe that the Maori people were the original people of New Zealand (not to be confused with Australian aborigines)  but in fact they are not.  It was the Moriori who were the original people in New Zealand, later to be followed by the Maori, who arrived from Polynesia around 1250 or 1300.   The census in NZ shows that about 600 000 people claim to be Maori, or about 15% of the total population of NZ.      So it is extra annoying to see that a MINORITY is trying to claim more and more rights for a land that was not theirs to begin with.     Currently in NZ, they are trying to get many place names changed to their names, despite the fact that they were not the original settlers.    Names such as Mount Cook (New Zealand’s highest mountain) are being replace by Maori equivalents, and even the names of the two main islands in NZ are now appearing under their Maori names.  They even are even trying to replace the words ‘New Zealand’ with their own names for the country.   But many NZ people are forgetting that the Maori are a MINORITY and that most of them do not use Maori language as their first language.   Politicians are giving in to the minority, and even government departments are being given Maori names to keep the minority happy.    Look on the internet for a telephone number for Picton Department of Conservation (DoC) and you will see that the DoC offices are now listed under their Maori names.    Gradually this MINORITY is trying to claim more and more land for themselves, despite the fact that they were not the original owners of the land.  And the NZ government is giving in to them, costing the taxpayers millions of dollars.   All wrong.

On a happier note, today’s photo comes from the Pacific Island of Niue, where a local is deep in thought…..


and another photo from the archives…..beautiful Picton in the Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand



Afghan market trader

Thought for the day….” You may delay, but time will not”

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled”.

Sharing borders with 6 countries, Afghanistan (population 32 million) became independent from the UK in 1919.  Pashto (a form of Persian) and Dari are the two official languages.  Kandahar was the original capital, before it was moved to Kabul.  The national game is not football, but buzkashi, or goat grabbing, where people in two teams on horseback try to catch a goat.  Kite flying is also a popular sport.  The highest mountain, Nowshak, rises to 7485m.  It is the world’s largest producer of opium, and since the US occupation which started in 2001, opium production has been on the rise.   It is said to also be the largest producer of cannabis in the world.

Today’s photo is of an Afghan market trader, complete with the usual headscarf…..


and another photo from the archives….a 747 of Singapore Airlines leaves Zurich, Switzerland….nearly 400 tonnes !



Peaceful Swiss Alps – Gstaad

Thought for the day…”Life is 10 percent what you make it, and 90 percent how you take it”

“We learn the ropes of life by untying the knots”.

Did you know that there are 4 official languages in Switzerland (Swiss German, French, Italian and Romansh)?  Swiss German is the main language, with about 64% of the population using it.   And did you know that the abbreviation for Switzerland, CH comes from Confoederatio Helvetica, which is latin, and was chosen as a neutral alternative to using one of the 4 official languages.  It has the second highest life expectancy in the world (Japan is first), and also a high divorce rate (around 43%).  The wrist watch was invented here in 1868 (Patek Philippe).  The photo today is of the Swiss town of Gstaad, in the southwest of the country.  About 9200 people live in this expensive resort, home to the famous such as Julie Andrews, Bernie Ecclestone and previously Roger Moore, Elisabeth Taylor and Roman Polanski.  It looks very quiet in the photo though……


and another photo from the archives….fireworks over Bergen, NorwayWordpress-Bergen


The megapixel race

Thought for the day…” Remember- you are unique.  Just like everyone else”.

“Laughter is a tranquilizer with no side effects, so keep taking it regularly”.

Just been reading the latest issue of Amateur Photographer magazine, and learning about the latest and greatest cameras that are being released, some of which now come with over 40 megapixels of resolution.    I read a very interesting letter on the forum (   is an excellent website for anyone interested in photography) from a man who was selling his Fuji camera.  He was very happy with the excellent quality photos that it produced and the very high resolution BUT he went on to say that all he ever did was to look at his pictures on the computer screen, so having so many pixels was wasted.   The camera produced fantastic quality pictures, but for HIS needs, it was too much.   I am sure that many people will sympathize with his views…do we really need upwards of 40mp resolution?   How many photos are we actually going to print or enlarge to a huge size?   And if we are just going to look at them on a computer screen then those extra pixels may indeed be wasted.    I will stick with my 16mp Fuji camera for now…the results are totally ok for my needs.   No need to upgrade to a 40mp camera…..I just do not need the extra pixels.    Sorry Canon, sorry Sony, I am just not interested !!

Today’s photo is reduced in quality for the internet…..but shows Furusund in the Swedish archipeligo at sunset..


and another photo from the archives….a happy cyclist in the Challenge Wanaka Triathlon competition…..



Street corner colour – Riga, Latvia

Thought for the day…”About the time that we can make ends meet, somebody moves the ends”.

A bit of street life in the Latvian capital city of Riga for the photo today….and not much action judging by the photo.   About 640 000 people live in the this city, or about 1/3 of the entire population of Lativa.   Temperatures in the city in winter can fall to -20 or -25 degrees.  It became independent from the Soviet Union in 1991, and interestingly, after independence around 290 000 people (about 14% today) were left with no citizenship of any country.  Latvia is also home to Europe’s widest waterfall, the 110m wide Ventas Rumba Falls.  Apparently, the studs on jeans were invented in Latvia, when the Latvian Jacob Davis joined with Levi Strauss.


and another photo from the archives..the waterfalls at Iguazu, Brail…..



Last light of the day….from above

Thought for the day…”I’ll try anything once, twice if I like it, and three times to make sure” (Mae West).

“Sex is emotion in motion”  (Mae West).

Up in the air……Who is the biggest?  The largest airline in the world (in terms of revenue, profit and fleet size) is the American Airlines group.   In terms of passengers, Delta is the world’s biggest private airline, with around 129 million passengers a year.   Emirates Airlines (UAE) is government owned, but their revenue last year was around USD 24.2 BILLION.  It used to be fun at one time, but now the security checks, check-in procedures and overcrowded airports have certainly taken the gloss away.    I often wonder who actually votes for the airlines that ‘win’ the awards for the world’s best airlines, but Singapore Airlines get my vote… does Singapore Airport (SIN) for the world’s best airport.    Norway’s Oslo (OSL) airport certainly deserves an award, not for comfort or for convenience, but for the lack of facilities and unpleasant surroundings.    Every time that I fly into or out of OSL I am struck by what a DISGRACE it is for Norway.  It does not get any better either.

Work means that I fly more than I would like but occasionally there are some perks….like this sunset last month, seen from an aircraft window in Norway….


and another photo from the archives…an unlucky weekend motorist (Ferrari) gets a ticket in Stockholm, Sweden….



They deserve to go out of business……Norwegian Post

Thought for the day…” Make your life a mission, not an intermission”.

Customers can forgive a lot, IF they see that a company is trying.    Mistakes will be made, that is natural, and customers will generally forgive IF the company is seen to be trying to resolve the problem.   But not   (Norway Post).   Not once, but TWICE they have messed up a delivery coming from New Zealand to Oslo.   They delivered the letter to the WRONG address, then sent it back to New Zealand for a second time.     But the worst thing is that they do not want to try to put matters right.   They will not even give out the email address of the customer manager.     Try emailing them…..and you will wait a long time for a pathetic reply.  Try asking them for compensation, and again you will wait and wait.   They really are hopeless.    They deserve to go out of business with staff like that working for them.    Bad enough that they messed up the delivery the first time, but to do it TWICE and then send the letter back to New Zealand AFTER I had emailed them to advise them of the problem is unforgiveable.   Guess who will be avoiding Norway Post in future??     I hope that bankruptcy comes soon.

The photo today is from rural Ethiopia……..not sure what they were looking at……..


and another photo from the archives….autumn in Geilo, Norway







Early one morning……71 degrees north

Thought for the day…” The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.”

For some reason, I have few photos of sunrise.    Not that sunrise is the correct term, because the sun does not rise at all, just that the Earth is turning.   Those who are into sundials will know about the equation of time, and the effects of refraction on the actual time of  ‘sunrise’.   Today’s photo was taken on 29th September at 71 degrees north in North Norway, just ahead of a storm.  Suprisingly, about 30 minutes after the photo was taken, the scene had changed to wind and rain, but for a few minutes around ‘sunrise’ the colours and clouds were great.  As usual, the Fuji X-E1 was the camera.


and another photo from the archives…..the island of Madeira and the fishing village of Camara de Lobos..




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