Sunday, October 21, 2012

Smell is a funny thing ...

... it can do things that sight and sound just can't manage - like evoke a memory. When I was a kid we used to live with a rail track at the bottom of the garden. It was towards the end of the steam age but I have memories of standing on the over-bridge at Kings Cross station full of steam locomotives, of camping in a tent in Scotland and listening to the night express whistling in the distance and taking a trip to Devon on a steam train.

Those memories didn't come back when we decided to ride the train today, nor when I saw the locomotive steaming at the ready, nor when I heard the whistle blow, or the engine puffing away. No, the memories came when I was seated in the carriage and a whiff of coal smoke drifted in through the window - that's what sparked the memories.
Happy engineers building up a head of steam prior to leaving Glenmark station.

Unhappy engineer telling stupid photographer to get off the tracks.

A428 - a 4-6-2 Pacific class locomotive built in 1909 cresting the Weka Pass.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Bird spotting

This morning's walk in the woods bagged a 'Bellbird' and a 'Silver eye' (sometimes known as a 'Wax eye'). There were also some lovely 'Fan tails' but they were moving so fast that I didn't manage to lock on for a good shot.

With the D80 I was never able to get close enough to these small birds to get a decent quality picture. Now, with the increased resolution and high ISO capabilities of the D600, I've been able to get the shots without too much difficulty (300mm lens + 1.4 tele-converter).

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Spring into Oxford

Last year it was was called the 'Spring Cruise', this year it was 'Spring into Oxford' - a good family day out including a fete on the rugby oval and, of course, the regular vintage car rally. Here's one of my favourite cars - the Austin Healey 100-6. It was for sale but I dare not ask the price.

There was the usual turnout of American iron but many old British beauties including; an Austin A55, a Vauxhall Cresta, Singers (Gazelle and Vogue), Triumph (Stag, 2000 TC and a TR3), Morris Minor (split screen and 1000 convertible), Austin Healey 100-6, Jaguar 420, Rover 90,  and Jowett  Javelin (with working traficators!). Here's the Morris 1000 convertible:

Not a cloud in the sky today; tomorrow its back to rain and possibly snow.