About Me

Wells, BC, Canada
Richard is a working photographer and writer in B.C. His camera focuses on natural history. archeology, travel, and documentary photography. His photography blog may be found at: http://richardtwright.blogspot.com/

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Hong Kong journal in the rain

Waiting out the rain in Hong Kong

It has been an exciting couple of weeks here on the far side of the Pacific, so much so that finding time for blogging has been a little difficult.  There is so much to write about it is hard to know where to begin so it will take some time to catch up, but, it is Sunday and I have a sore throat, and it is cold and rainy so time to bog.

Let's begin with Vancouver airport check-in and security. Travelling can sometimes be just a way to reach a destination, but more often I find it a part of the story. This time it began with a friendly check in clerk at Cathay Pacific who noticed we had booked two aisle seats (for maximum leg room). "Would you like something different," she asked?
"Sure," I said, "how about moving us upstairs." (Meaning first class.)
"I'd love to but I can't.  But I can give you an aisle and a window with an empty seat in the middle."
A great start.  We had lots of time for security, so no rush. I registered a couple more lenses with Canada customs, a practice I have followed for decades and found it always speeds up re-entry on the return journey.

I find that as an older traveller no one checks my carry-on pack's weight - which is always overweight with my primary photo gear. I think they figure if an old guy can pack it, it can't be too heavy - though my son Richard finds the same thing.
My favorite camera pack has become the LowePro Rover II. It holds a camera body, a 12-24mm Nikkor, a 18-70mm, a 70-300, a 50mm f1.8 and a SB 800 flash, and a few items in the inside pocket such as cleaning material and a polarizer.  Padded away in my luggage is a 200-400mm Tamron I am testing, a Ltl Acorn game cam, a Go Pro, a Manfrotto monopod and various clamps. Amy has her trusty Nikon P7000 that we will use for in flight photos.

Over Siberia somewhere. Richard Wright photo
At security I tired something I read on a photographer's travel blog.  I took all my loose pocket items, from change to pens, and put them in a small see though bag in my jacket pocket. At security I plucked camera pack, laptop and jacket in the trays walked through the scanner and was ready to be on my way.

Amy was not so lucky.  She had two green suitcases - one for carry on.  She had placed a pair of scissors in the wrong one. The scanner showed them and it took 15 minutes to find them.  Then the security clerk said, "Oh, they are small. You can keep them."  Go figure.
There was some momentary dismay when the passenger ahead of us opened the overhead bin with out care and dropped several bags on my head - one of which was a tin of chocolates whose corner nailed my forehead.  Not too bad but the jerk did not even apologize, just kept saying, "not my bags, not my fault." The cabin attendant reamed him out and then brought me ice for my forehead.  It must be karma as on our last London trip a similar thing happened, which got me an upgrade.
Northern Russia. Nikon P7000. Richard Wright photo.

The flight is 13 hours, so for me it means lots of standing in the toilet area, trying to get blood flowing again, doing a little pseudo Tai Chi. And the window seat? Fantastic, as we flew over Siberia and the eastern Gobi desert under clear skies, in broad daylight. The landscape seemed to draw me down into a dream of another photo journey on the Trans Siberian railway- Moscow to China - the longest continuous railroad trip in the world. It is high on my bucket list.

The northeastern Gobi, just south of Ulan Bator, capital of Mongolia,
and what appears to be a strip mine. Nikon P7000. Richard Wright photo
Cloud cover and sunset over Hong Kong area. Nikon p7000. Amy Newman photo.

The flight arrives on time and we are through customs with no problem other than a rather long line. We arrive to find son Richard waiting and by 9 p.m. Hong Kong time we were home in Clearwater Bay planning our next couple of weeks. We're ready to go.

Upcoming Hong Kong blogs:
Street shooting
Camera stores in Hong Kong - a guide
Sports shooting in Hong Kong
Birding in Hong Kong and many more.

For more photos of Hong Kong go to:
Website: http://richardtwright.photoshelter.com/

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