Rant Air – Welcome Aboard!

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Best Laid Plans…

May 9th, 2009 · 2 Comments

I’d gotten everything ready to head on down to San Diego early tomorrow morning. The goal was to “set up camp” on a small patch of ground in Coronado’s Centennial Park from which I could photograph the 2009 Red Bull Air Race qualifying event. I’d borrowed a nice lawn chair from my sister’s RV. I’d been to the grocery store to grab things with which to make a nice lunch. And I’d driven forty minutes each way to retreive a rental lens (a gorgeous piece of Nikon equipment) from Samy’s Camera in Pasadena to shoot through. As any kid with a new toy could understand, I had hooked that big lens up to my camera the minute I got home. You know, to “play test” it a little before packing it back up and getting everything prepared for loading into the car in the wee hours of the following morning.

It felt more like a Browning M2 .50 cal machine gun...

It felt more like a Browning M2 .50 cal machine gun...

Then, I got the phone call.

My buddy Bob, who was planning on going with me in the morning, wound up having to work an evening shift today. He wouldn’t be getting off work until 1130pm, and of course, a car trip starting at 4am the following morning didn’t sound do-able to him in the least. I don’t blame him a bit. I’d feel the same way.

So why didn’t I just suck it up and go alone?

Well, it would have been wholly impractical, really. I would have staked a claim to a 4′ x 4′ slap of park grass overlooking San Diego Bay only to have to give it up for my first run to the Andy Gump for a whizz break, or I could have left $15,000 worth of camera gear to the watchful eye of a complete stranger.

Fortunately for me, the guys in the rental department at Samy’s Camera in Pasadena were very understanding. I got the lens back to them only about two hours after I left the store with it. I took a little grief from the guys behind the counter (I’d reserved the lens a month ago and called last week to make sure it would be there), but they were good enough to not charge me a single dime.

Oh well. These things happen. I’d already been down there in 2008 and 2007 anyhow. I guess I’ll just have to make sure I hit the Edwards Air Force Base Air Show this year.

At least I got my photo taken with the lens!

9 pounds of lens, 3 pounds of camera!

9 pounds of lens, 3 pounds of camera!

Tags: Airshows · Lenses · Personal · Photography · Uncategorized

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Ron // May 11, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    Sorry you missed out on the race. I was flying overhead, doing some Skytyping.

    Since Red Bull didn’t work out for you, why not hit the Chino Airshow this weekend? Can’t think of anywhere else you’ll be able to see some of those rare warbirds all in the same place, and more or less all flying.


  • 2 Mirror Mirror… | Rant Air - Welcome Aboard! // Aug 17, 2009 at 7:02 pm

    [...] than a refracting lens of the same focal length. For instance, I recently wrote about Nikon’s 400mm f/2.8 VR lens. You can see the humongous size of that lens here. This 500mm f/8 mirror lens is about 1/4 the [...]

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