Tuesday, December 29, 2009


One of the most illuminating features of Santa Fe, at Christmas, are the farolitos or lumminaries that are set up all over the town. Many of the buildings have electric versions of them but on Christmas Eve, the real paper bag and candle versions are set up all over the streets. Amanda and I enjoyed a very chilly evening stroll around the streets, lit by the little glowing lanterns.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Santa Fe

We decided to spend Christmas in Santa Fe, NM. I'd never been there before and Christmas seemed like a good time to go! We had a few inches of snow, just enough to make everything pretty but not too much to spoil walking around. The food was great, the town is lovely, in a slightly faked to stay old-fashioned way and the food was fantastic.

All the pictures here were taken with my iPhone. I'm continually surprised with what I can get out of that with some attention to the format and a couple of cheap applications to do a bit of post processing on the phone. If anyone is interested I can write a bit about what those are and how I'm using them, too. I have more images I took on a better camera, still languishing on the memory card. Meanwhile, I've managed to arrange prints of some of these iPhone pictures, all before even leaving Santa Fe.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Merry Christmas!


Sunday, December 13, 2009

back to the beginning


My guitar lessons continue. I'm practicing every day, going to lessons once a week. Generally trying to immerse myself in the whole thing and building up calluses in the right places. I'm making progress, one buzzing fret at a time. I'm finding a hidden musical world revealing itself to me as I learn each new thing.

I frequently have times, particularly in my lessons, when it feels like the teacher is talking a foreign language. An alien, foreign language, where I don't even know what the words sound like, never mind what they mean. He'll demonstrate something and make an offhand remark about 'this compared to this' and to my ear they sound the same. Well, different, but I don't even understand how to articulate the difference. He'll talk about concepts and I'll be struggling to understand the words he's using - I might have heard them before but the meaning hasn't quite percolated into my brain yet. The last time I remember feeling this lost would be about 20 years ago, first year classes at University. It's been a while! Every now and then I can feel the bemused expression on my face as I grope towards understanding what he's trying to explain to me, while I wrestle with even getting the words he's using lined up in my head. It's fun! I record the lessons and occasionally when I listen back to them something new clicks in to place and I feel like I might be getting closer to having a vague idea of what was actually being discussed.

It did strike me that I probably do this to people when explaining photography, too. Concepts and ideas that I've had years to get straight in my head just seem so obvious and act as a starting point for the conversation. When really, going back to first principles is often quite a long journey back, to get up to the point you might like to discuss. I've seen that bemused look before, from the other side!