Archive for July, 2012

Used: Lifetime

I love a good window seat. Really, who doesn’t? Slightly more space under your seat, enough to jam everything up against “the wall”, a plastic hole to check out the ground below and a very hard up-right bed to sleep on. What could be better? Thought I have written about my recently acquired loved for Group C (aka the middle seat) on Southwest I really don’t mind the middle seat when flights are around an hour long, give or take On my flight home from Peru last year, I was given an aisle seat on 2 out of 3 legs which the check-in counter couldn’t change. Oh well, it wasn’t a red-eye and hell, it wasn’t a middle (especially for that 5+ hours flight from SAL to LAX), I’ll see what this fuss is about.

I kind of get why the aisle is awesome. As someone who has minor issues with their knees, I love the aisle for the space is offers. If no one is coming, I can stretch out as much as I want. And for the snoop in me, I love spying on what people are reading, listening or talking about.

But the biggest downside to sitting in an aisle seat (and even middle perhaps) and why I make an awesome window seat companion is my ability to “hold it”. I have the art of using the loo down to a science, especially when I fly. And on flights less than 10 hours, I usually just hold it the whole time. The moment they start to board the plane, I use the restroom and the first thing I do when I get off is find a loo. On long flights, I like to think I am considerate and I can’t remember the last time I had to ask anyone to get up, I just use the loo when the others in my row get up, to ease the process. Heck, I’ll even get up and go when the others do, even if I don’t really have to go, just in case!

My chart for what should be legal uses of using the toilet whilest sitting on any of the internal seats.

Flight time 0-4 hours – ZERO times, just fucking hold it.
Flight time 4-7 hours – 1x
Flight time 7-14 hours – 2x
Flight time 15+ – 3x (no more)

Anymore then the above and you should be required to sit on the aisle.

On my 5+ hour flight from SAL to LAX the person at the window got up TWICE. The first time, I just rolled my eyes, but went with it. But less then two hours later, they got up again and I nearly lost it. I hate sitting and standing and worse, settling back into a warm seat (ewww), I wanted to punch them. Are you fucking kidding me? If you have to pee this much, sit on the fucking aisle. Note: I never pee’d once during the whole flight.

Moral: Is this rant too petty? Guess what, I don’t care. We all have our weird pet-peeves when we fly (don’t really care about paying for ticket changes or paying for checked bags, I could write two posts ranting on those complaints! Hey, watch for those posts coming eventually!) and this just happens to be mine. And fun family side-note: My dad, who LOVES the window (he and my mom got into such a fight over the window when leaving New Zealand, that my sister and I just left the airport, not knowing when I was going to see them again and they barely noticed) has had to give it up recently on long flights because he needs to stretch every hour and use the loo more. He is aware of his needs and changed his wants for your comfort. Too bad more people couldn’t be like that.

Used: My lifetime.

Is it just me or do there seem to be a lot of posts out there lately regarding “how to take better pictures”? I feel like this trend comes and goes. Even though I took photo all my years in high school (as well as went to a hoity-toity photography program one summer vacation), I have never been one to concentrate and set up a shot. I can tell you I hate flash and when it comes to black and white, those are the only colors I want to see (I hate gray). Other than that, whatever my camera gives me, I am sure I’ll love. In fact, the crazier or unfocused or blury or whatever the picture, sometimes make it better because who knows what was happening to you when you took it? A gust of wind? A friendly laugh? Leaning over so far and the shot is still out of reach? I love it even more! The jest of it is, if I wanted postcard quality shots, I would just buy the postcard. And I do, especially if it’s of a place that I love. I’d must rather experience a place then spend time taking pictures.

One of my favorite “awful” picture of Sydney at night. It’s not going to get better then this!

So when I first arrived in Auckland, I had my new camera with me. I read the instruction manuel on how to use it and the pictures I took back in LA turned out fine. I snapped my heart out the first weekend in Auckland, doing loads of touristy things and when I finally had a moment to sit down and look at the pictures I noticed that they all looked really bright and washed out. I did not adjust my settings for lack of ozone layer, which New Zealand is known for! I adjusted my settings quickly and the rest of my pictures for the next 2 years turned out great.

My first shot of Rangitoto Island, Auckland, New Zealand

After I realized my error and changed my camera settings. Rangitoto Island, Auckland, New Zealand

When I went over to Australia to meet up with some friends, my friend had this HUGE camera she carried around with her in this huge heavy bag. We went to the Blue Mountains and she totally lagged it compared to the rest of the group because not only did she had to stop and take pictures of EVERYTHING but because of her camera, ever shot had to be set up in a professional manner and it took forever. Give me my point and shot any day.

Besides, as a perpetual solo traveler, a huge DSLR is highly impractical. First off, you can’t take pictures of yourself by holding it out in front of you. Talk about a set up! No thanks. Plus, I like knowing all the features on my camera and by the time I learned them all on a DSLR, it would be out of date. Forget it.

Take a picture of myself in Sydney, Australia. Not the greatest angle due to the sun, but different!

And actually, this is so unlike me to say but after playing around with my sisters iphone last year, I think when I need to get a new camera, I might actually consider getting that. Still not going to happen for at least two more years as my current camera is alive and clicking, but when I do, that is high on my consideration list.

Auckland is not really this light! Before I changed the settings.

Moral: Take whatever pictures you won’t, don’t care about anyone else. And talk about being a tourist! If you spend too much time setting up a shot, not only will you look like a tourist, but you’ll miss out on everything that is going on around you!