Another day, another way!

What I love about Sydney is the countless ways I can get into the CBD. There are so many wharfs! Today I decided to get the ferry from one of the countless terminals dotted around Sydney’s coastline.

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Today’s journey, Neutral Bay (centre of image) to Circular Quay.

Because there are so many, the demand doesn’t seem to be so great. There was an exception to this recently during a very busy and warm weekend trying to get the ferry from Circular Quay to Manly, a very popular beach town (top right of the map). It was rammed, so much so that I had to wait for a second ferry as the first was at full capacity. This doesn’t seem to be commonplace though, each of my journeys has resulted in me finding a seat very easily and not having to give it up for someone that needs it more. The service reminds me more of a bus service with stops just down from streets and residential areas, one of the three stops today picked up a family. How cool is it that a ferry can stop solely to pick you up?

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As I have said before, I recommend taking a different route to work if possible. It takes the boring, repeated routine out of life and spices the day up a little. Even if we can mix our day up a tiny bit in some way, we loosen those shackles that society and employment place us in that little bit more. By changing the daily routine, we gain a little more control.

To infinity!

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Meet Biggles

This is Biggles. He was a much loved dog at The Rocks in Sydney where he lived. He was often seen on the back of a bike in a milk crate riding around with his owner.


This reminded me instantly of Greyfriars Bobby, a Skye Terrier that spent the last 14 years of his life in the 19th century guarding the grave of his owner, John Gray. My mother introduced me to Bobby in Edinburgh (where she was also born) and I have walked by the statue many times.

The monument has had a problem with tourists rubbing Bobby’s nose for good luck. This has caused discolouration and signs have been put around his neck asking passers by to refrain from doing so.

Back to Biggles, I had to Google him for a little more info. I’m sure the local tourist information centre could have provided it however I decided to explore the streets a little further and do a quick search later. Monument Australia provided the following.

‘Biggles was regarded as a `local character` among the residents and shopkeepers as he roamed the Rocks Area sometimes leaping from balconies in pursuit of cats. Unfortunately for Biggles, his final leap was off a cliff near Mrs Macquarie`s Chair after what was thought to have been a rat. Biggles died at the age of fourteen and is now immortalised in the statue created by artist, Anne Dybka, herself a resident of the Rocks.’

He spent his whole life chasing, as we should be doing with our dreams. Bobby spent his whole life loving, equally admirable. 

Has your hometown had a very popular pet, one that fits beautifully into the community? Does it have one currently that deserves a statue in the future?

Let’s all be like Biggles and Bobby. I for one could certainly learn a thing or two from these great dogs.

Accept fate? Hell no!

Friday 13th. The day that bad things will happen to you and we have to dodge these demons for the next 24 hours. Life is full of do this and do that’s, lets not add to them. If anything, being convinced something bad will happen will probably result in just that, or at least make you overthinking the negatives instead of cherishing the positives.

It’s Friday, how bad can it be?!

A glorious looking Friday 13th. I think they were also filming here for TV.

Lets take a different approach to the day. What great things happened to you? For me:

-The sun was shining

-I spoke to friends and family on Skype

-I went to the gym two days in a row, something I haven’t done since I arrived in Australia.

When society tells you how your day will be, prove them wrong! 

Don’t waste your space

One thing that really gets on my nerves is having a great photo opportunity present itself and having the ‘not enough storage’ message pop on my iPhone screen. I have downloaded every single photo from my camera roll onto my laptop for this very reason and what really hit me was the sheer amount of pointless food selfies, work rotas and screenshots clogging up my storage. To think that has prevented me from taking some great spur of the moment shots is very annoying.

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To be fair to me, I did also find some gems such as this one. Rodney is often seen outside this barber shop looking for customers. He could sell a haircut to a bald man.

It made me think how much of our lives are taken up with the things we don’t need or don’t want to have. It also takes me back to this post I typed up back in 2015 about our daily need to remember all of those pin numbers, usernames and passwords.

I would say that 15-20% of my camera roll was photos that I didn’t need. Ones that I had taken to remind myself of a job I had to do at work or my next few shifts. Food pics that could have been anywhere by anyone and blurred images accidentally taken in my pocket or a split second after and actual photo. Is this a sign that I need to buy a decent camera that doesn’t take calls? I think so.

I have to appreciate our recent ability to take snaps on the go, no other time in history has been this kind to us. It blows my mind that we are able to freeze a moment that presents itself to us and look back at it, or tap the screen and send it across the world instantly. For this reason, I have made a promise to myself to not take photos that aren’t worthy. No photos of the rota, no silly food pics. Only the best will do. There are too many incredible moments out there happening right now and waiting to be shared to the world, many going unnoticed. I found this one this morning from the eclipse we experienced recently. Someone posted it to Reddit (which seems to have been deleted since) and has been viewed over a million times.

Well done to the person that captured this once in a lifetime moment, link is here although the image currently is not.*

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Think of all the bathroom selfies being taken right at the very moment this was captured…

And how many incredible shots have been missed in the process.


*Update: Clicking the link above, it seems like there has been an update from the photographer claiming the photo has been edited.

Unfortunately, as some have suspected, the image of the eclipse that was posted is indeed modified further than simple contrast and saturation changes. It is two exposures edited into a single image.

It started out as a Facebook post of a piece of simple art I created and quickly grew to something that it was not due to the way I described and promoted the image. I have mislead a lot of people and I apologize for that. I was seeking recognition for my photography, but not in this way.

I would like to state that I have not made any monetary gain from this image, have closed down the print shop and have declined all media interviews related to this piece. I have wasted the time of many people and I apologize for that. I realize that the only reason this piece of work was significant was the story behind it which is not true.

I apologize to all who were involved in tracking down the pilots. They were flying overhead at that point in time, but not exactly as is shown in the image.

Well I certainly appreciate the honesty, even if the eagle eyed viewers may have contributed to exposing this. The person that received the confession replied:

I understand and want to thank you for coming clean. While this may have not been an “accidental photo” I think it’s important to tell you that it is still an amazing photo – and I am still planning to have a print done up and hung in my work office. While the story behind it may have been fabricated, your skill as a photographer is real. I truly hope that you continue taking photos and honing your skill.

Would I be so willing to hang it up on my wall after knowing it was a fake? I’m not sure. At least I would know I was told the truth. What do you think?

Sam

 

Shape life before it shapes you

A wind bent tree is shackled by its roots. It cannot evade, only endure. This picture was taken on a very windy day on the Isle of Wight, I was sitting inside a car which explains the reflection. It also reflects my current thoughts.

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So many factors contribute to how we currently feel. Our jobs, relationships, health, wealth, social status, location, the weather…The list goes on for as long as we want it to. 

Some of these cannot be controlled, some can. Although it is important that we make the most of what we are able to control, it is vital to react positively to what we cannot. I have found that throughout life I have often reacted badly to what I cannot control and for that, have dramatically reduced my productivity with what I can change. 

As with any time period, we have to accept that society will mould us to a certain degree. That we are victims of circumstance that may deprive us of education and freedom, creativity and opportunity. With that being said, some of the most successful and inspirational people among us have had that same burden. We can reduce the degree in which it affects us.

The ability that we possess that a tree does not is that we can resist. We can move and rebel, relocating away from that heavy pressure of society and into a place in which those strong winds launch us forward instead of hold us back. It’s simply about looking in the right places and being willing to change direction. 

A seemingly impossible climb can become the easiest walk with a simple 180.