A different kind of Saturday for me

Most Saturday’s back at home—after a hard week’s work away at site where I am up at 6:00 a.m. each day and find it difficult to sleep most nights—I sleep in until about 10:30. About then, plus or minus about 30 minutes, I get up and take my sugar readings (I am type 2 diabetic for anyone who missed it). Generally I then grump at myself for my sugar levels being over the maximum ‘safe’ level of 8.0, as they are almost every morning these days. Then I put together a breakfast which is usually either fried eggs or scrambled eggs on toast—which I should not have; the toast I mean because of the carbohydrates, not the eggs.

Everybody else in the house is typically still asleep, or if not actually asleep then lolling about in bed still deciding whether to get up or not; and usually deciding not to get up. Not just yet anyway.

After making and eating breakfast, which involves injecting about 8 to 10 millilitres of insulin, I typically wander into my study and arc up my computer. Then I sort of go through a routine of checking all the news sites I like, all the technology sites I like, all the photography sites I like, Goodshit, my site’s statistics, and so on. Lately I have been downloading one of the American NFL games and I usually have that playing in the background.

I seriously like American football. Lately I have been following the New England Patriot’s featuring Tom Brady as the quarterback; but basically I like watching any American football games.

Well today was different. Very different.

Firstly there was a slip left from DHL yesterday advising that they tried to deliver a package but nobody was home. This had to be my Canon G15 compact camera from Kogan’s. So I planned to go down to DHL at the airport depot and pick that up. Plus a workmate had sort of coaxed me in to going along to see ‘Life of Pi’ at the cinema. This was huge. I have not been to a movie cinema for at least ten years.

So I got up a little earlier and at 9:00 a.m. I was on the road to the DHL depot over at the International Airport. That was kind of interesting. You expect this large ‘reception’ area but when you get there is it dinky (Australian slag for ‘much smaller than expected’). There is actually a queue of people there picking up parcels. This queue is almost out the dinky little office door. They are only open from 9:00 to midday and it seems that a lot of people are getting parcels these days and, for some reason, they could not be delivered to their houses.

Anyway I picked up my parcel. But I had a text message from Mohit, my workmate. He said to meet at Belmont Reading cinemas at 11:20 for Life of Pi.

I get back home and drop my parcel off. I opened it up and put the battery on charge. But that is all I had time to do. Then off to Belmont.

I was feeling a little anxious about going to the cinema. Not having been for many years, and basically I am crowd-shy and I hate car-park antics on heavy shopping days—which Saturdays are. Which probably helps explain why I have not been to the cinema for so long.

But I got there at about 11:22 a.m. and we headed off into the Gold Lounge part of the cinema. Tickets for this part of the cinema are $35 but you get pampered and there are no kids allowed. Perfect. Anyway I had not been to a cinema for ten years. Also, as it happens, and I did not know this at the time, you can order food and drinks. So I ordered fish and chips, and a Bacardi and coke.

Sure enough, about 15 minutes into the movie along comes my fish and chips with my Bacardi and coke. How awesome is that!

Life of Pi in the Gold Lounge was in 3D and this is the first time I have ever seen a 3D movie in a cinema. I have seen 3D demonstrated on TVs in electronics shops but had never before experienced it in a theatre. I would not say, having seen 3D in a cinema, that I am a converted 3D fan but I will admit it was better than I expected.

After the movie Mohit ended up coming around to my house and this spurred me into getting a cable for my guitar so I could plug it into the amplifier. There is a bit of a story here. About 15 years ago I bought an Ovation guitar because I had played guitar a bit as a teen. I went a little overboard and got a good one with a powered pickup. At the time, with the powered pickup fitted, it was about $1,500. But I only played it for about six months and then put it away.

Then about six months ago I got back into plinking on my guitar and at the time I went and bought a practise amplifier. A Fender Mustang I. The plan was to plug my guitar in and see what this powered pickup I paid do much for sounded like. But at the time I forget to get a cable to plug the guitar into the amplifier. So that didn’t happen and have never got around to getting the required cable since.

With Mohit’s encouragement we went out in 35°C heat (that is 95°F for my American readers) and bought a guitar lead. Oh! And a 9volt battery to put into my guitar to power the pickup. The guitar lead was $10 and, can you believe it, the 9v battery was $9.95! How can such a little battery cost so much?

Anyway, for the first time since I bought it about 15 years ago, I have now heard what the Ovation sounds like through an amplifier and it is pretty amazing. Very impressive. Even with just this little Fender Mustang I ‘home’ amplifier.

But the day was not over.

After Mohit left I put the now fully charged battery into the Canon G15 compact digital camera and lit it up.

I have now spent the better part of about two hours setting it up how I want it to work. I have set it to spot focus with an aspect ratio of 3:2 (just like a real camera). I have set the shutter for focus lock and aperture lock on the first step press, and turned off the digital zoom (digital zoom is totally useless and just irreversibly degrades your pictures). The operating mode is set to aperture-preferred and I have disabled all the image filtering so the images are not edited by the camera.

If there is any picture editing to be done I will do it myself on the computer. This way I don’t lose so much image quality due to the in-camera post-processing.

Wow. What a different kind of day for me. Only now, after dinner, at 9:00 p.m. have I managed to sit down at my computer.