For newcomers

At the bottom of each post there is the word "comments". If you click on it you will see comments made by followers, and if you follow the instructions you may also comment and I always welcome that. I have found many people overlook this part of the blog which is often more interesting than the original post!


Friday, 12 August 2016

Storrs Hall (Arkholme, Lancs)

Thursday 12th August 2016

A good start to my Thursday walk with Pete.

I  put my rucksack in the boot then decide to retrieve my iPad from the rucksack. I still have the car keys in my hand and manage to leave them behind in the rucksack as I bring out the iPad. I slam down the lid, et voilà, I am locked out of my car, Oh, it's so easy to do.

It was not a major disaster - I keep a spare key in the house, but I feel the humiliation because I have a personal rule, that I will never close that boot lid without checking I have the keys in my hand. Time to fall on my sword?

Driving to Pete's there is fizzle on the windscreen; the cloud cover is broody and ominous. Turning down Pete's lane there are three or four dark clad guys, all looking miserable and working their way door to door to try and inflict their beliefs on the good souls (but not in their opinions) of Arnside.

Pete warns his missus not to bother answering the door when the call comes.

I seem to have exhausted all suitable circular walks and I am now looking for those roads on the map that go nowhere so we can walk to the end and then back again over a total distance of about four miles. Perhaps there is some kind of message in walking to nowhere - I will have to think about that. 

It did rain a bit during the last ten minutes back to the car. The walk had not been particularly inspiring and we were glad to get back to Café Ambio for tea and flapjack amongst the farmers (our Thurday port of call is attached to the new purpose built livestock mart near Jct. 36 on the M6).The farmers ostensibly go there to buy and sell their animals, but also to engage in lively, bucolic conversation in the café.  I reckon it is a lonely existence for many of them and the weekly visit to this venue appears to be a welcome social opportunity.

My last post produced lively discussion about the features of the iPhone as a camera. I have now delved further into this and still find the thing not to my liking. The latest irritation is its penchant for taking photos in "burst" mode so you can have the dubious pleasure of selecting the one you want out of a dozen or so and then going onto forums to find out how to delete the rest. Disabling this function, according to various Internet sources is a mystery, and even if possible, not straightforward. Anyway I've had enough of it. The HDR (high dynamic range) feature which also uses several different shots to make a composite picture allowing for correct exposure of over and under exposure in different parts of the photo is apparently only any good if you use a tripod because exposure time is too long to overcome the slight movements if hand held. I don't want to be faffing with a tripod most of the time. When I use my Panasonic TZ60 I download photos onto my computer and run most of them through Photoshop Elements and adjust for: "lighten or darken highlights" and "lighten or darken shadows". That achieves the same result as the HDR does on the iPhone and I am now very slick with this operation. I also have the advantage of seeing exactly what is happening to the photo as I slide the controls enabling me to fine tune to maximum benefit. There are other controls that I use only occasionally for "brightness", and "sharpen".

The photos below were taken on this walk with my Panasonic. the first being as downloaded from the camera and the second after my Photoshop adjustments. The photos themselves are not good for various reasons, not least the flora blowing about in the strong wind, but they do serve to demonstrate what I am writing about. 

If all this photo stuff is of interest to you and you have managed to read this far please take the trouble to CLICK the first photo to see enlarged versions. The results of my adjustments are normally more beneficial than this lot, but in the interest of getting this posted I have used these poor photos which were to hand.

Note the difference in the sky on this one

Add caption


AlanR said...

That made my morning. Laughed out load.
The camera doesn't take photo's in burst mode. It only does what you tell it to. (although i know how easy it is to do). deleting the burst photo's is easy as you will now know.
I can understand you not wanting to use a tripod because neither do i, but, some folk walk just to take photo's of certain places and will spend plenty of time getting the image just right and so a tripod is not an issue. For these folks HDR is the way to go with the iphone.

I have done the KEYS episode so many times that Sheila now carries a spare set with her. I usually do it getting back to the car after a walk. Unlock the boot, throw in the gear with the keys, change shoes shut the boot and then think where are the keys.

Phreerunner said...

I see your 'bloggers gift' arose without difficulty!
I've started to leave my 'proper' camera at home when on short walks as the Samsung phone seems to take good pictures with rich colours. Not that I'm a photographer, and I still put the images through the same process as you do using Picasa or 'elements'. Unless I'm doing mobile postings (as last week), when I simply crop the phone images, if necessary, and load them at 10% resolution.
I still haven't worked out how to insert text between the images though! Duh!

Anonymous said...

Your walk brought to mind the lyrics from Talking Heads --

Well we know where we're going
But we don't know where we've been
And we know what we're knowing
But we can't say what we've seen
And we're not little children
And we know what we want
And the future is certain
Give us time to work it out
We're on a road to nowhere

I've been there so many times with car keys as you know. Fortunate you didn't throw in the house keys as well.

Sir Hugh said...

Alan R - I am reasonably computer and tech. literate, but sometimes you just get a fixation about something and I seem to have a head-in-the-sand attitude to the iPhone camera. I have a Mac desktop computer, and an iPhone and an iPad mini, but I am by no means one of those who worships at the Apple Orchard. My Mac is just as prone to crashing as the previous pc, and Apple's help and assistance is woeful. Pages is in the Dark Ages compared with Microsoft Word, but there are also many slick things about the Mac that like. I would add that I also have a virtual PC partitioned on the Mac running Windows 7 with Parallels software, so I have the best (or worst) of both systems.

I'm pleased to hear I made somebody laugh.


Phreerunner - Each to his own. I also reduce the file size of my blog photos using "Image/resize" on the Mac to something like 1000 x 750 pixels, so if you ever want to obtain any of my photos let me know and I will let you have copies at full size.


BC - Good lyrics - all those bands I missed in the 60s and 70s when I was more fixated on jazz. There is much good stuff out there which I stupidly spurned back then.

Anonymous said...

I was also into jazz but living in London in the 'swinging sixties' there was so much going on. Ronnie Scott's, folk clubs and then the university hops playing all the modern stuff. Don't know how I did any studying. When were you last at a hop?

Sir Hugh said...

Although I understand the meaning of "hop" it was not a word we used. We had "parties", usually in friend's houses when the parents had gone away. They usually started after closing time at the pub and would go on all night playing jazz records, spilling beer all over the place, and talking of our reading matter, (we were pretty well read) and generally being a nuisance to the neighbours. In Bradford we also had The Student's Club, a vaulted cellar in the centre of town with live jazz groups, no bar, and dancing or jiving or bopping or whatever you want to call it. At that time all the major American jazz performers visited and played in St. George's Hall and individual jazz musicians would come to the club and jam with our local guys. We had a trombonist called Derek Wadsworth who went on to become musical director of Hair and carved out a well respected career in the music world. Happy days wearing my smart three button Italian suit, a shirt with rounded detachable celluloid collar, and pointed black shoes - we thought we were so sophisticated - Elvis was rubbish!

Gayle said...

Your determination not to repeat a route with Pete is admirable.

I walk straight from the front door when we're home and I fear that you'd be horrified at how much repetition that creates in my walking life (although I do have quite a collection of different routes; the repetition is a function of how often I go out).

Gayle said...

Incidentally, one benefit of currently having a low-spec car is that we don't have remote central locking, nor even a keyhole on the boot. The only way we can open the boot is to use the key in the door lock, then open the boot. The only way we can lock it is via the key in the door lock.