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Thursday, August 27, 2009

NW Trek – Photographing animals a whole new experience

Like most organized events (ok you got me, none were this well organized), this one started as an interesting email thread by a fellow softie, soon complex scheduling ensued and finally we had a booked plan for 15 of us to go to NW Trek to photograph the wild life there.

This was an interesting opportunity for both Margaret and I since we had never seriously considered photographing animals for that sake, though we like to think we were, actually were not that serious with photography. But things do change and this was a welcome change.

Our car was in the shop, we had a loaner with us, no navigation on it so out came the trusty phone to help guide us along.  A pleasant ride later we arrived just at 7:30am and met up with the rest of the crowd, still not knowing exactly what we had gotten ourselves into. Perspectives changed as we boarded the tram and started the tour, first we had to come to terms with the equipment folks were carrying around us, someone joked about 100K worth of camera gear on the tram and secondly the environment. Little did I realize that this was a 723-acre park, which housed about 200 animals ranging from black bears, wolves, deer’s, elks, bison to name a few.

As the day progressed we soaked in some really great sceneries and saw allot of animals up close and amazed about 600 shots together. Of course off the 600 about 5 really made the cut but compared to what the others had taken certainly had to hide mine ;).

Mag-4590 Mag-4690
Mag-4652 Raj-5153

This was truly a one of kind experience and would certainly encourage others to try out, irrespective of your interest in photography.

Feel free to check out the rest of the photos from trip on flickr.

Check out NW Trek @ http://www.nwtrek.org

Over and out, Raj

NW Trek – Photographing animals a whole new experience

Like most organized events (ok you got me, none were this will organized), this one started as an interesting email thread by a fellow softie, soon complex scheduling ensued and finally we had a booked plan for 15 of us to go to NW Trek to photograph the wild life there.

This was an interesting opportunity for both Margaret and I since we had never seriously considered photographing animals for that sake, though we like to think we were, actually were not that serious with photography. But things do change and this was a welcome change.

Our car was in the shop, we had a loaner with us, no navigation on it so out came the trusty phone to help guide us along.  A pleasant ride later we arrived just at 7:30am and met up with the rest of the crowd, still not knowing exactly what we had gotten ourselves into. Perspectives changed as we boarded the tram and started the tour, first we had to come to terms with the equipment folks were carrying around us, someone joked about 100K worth of camera gear on the tram and secondly the environment. Little did I realize that this was a 723-acre park, which housed about 200 animals ranging from black bears, wolves, deer’s, elks, bison to name a few.

As the day progressed we soaked in some really great sceneries and saw allot of animals up close and amazed about 600 shots together. Of course off the 600 about 5 really made the cut but compared to what the others had taken certainly had to hide mine ;).

Mag-4590 Mag-4690
Mag-4652 Raj-5153

This was truly a one of kind experience and would certainly encourage others to try out, irrespective of your interest in photography.

Feel free to check out the rest of the photos from trip on flickr.

Check out NW Treak @ http://www.nwtrek.org

Over and out, Raj

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Figuring out I have diabetes!

There is always that moment of truth lurking around the bend and mine was apparently not too far along. I knew it was just a matter of time given my mom had the condition and that my eating habits were anything but healthy , but the truth is hard to swallow.

It all started with a trip to my optometrist to get my annual eye examination done. I was stoked, had this nice frame picked out and could not wait to get rid of the Oakley's I have at the moment. One thing leads to another, the doctor is concerned, I can so tell something is wrong. She takes a breath and asks “Raj do you have high blood pressure and or diabetes?”

WHAT!!! Yeah that's what I blurted out and startled her a bit.  Took a second to compose myself and said “Yeah I believe I have BP but not quite sure about diabetes.”

Long story short, she had found that I had a few hemorrhages in the left eye, which are typically caused by Diabetes and or BP and she wanted me to go see a doctor immediately.

This one simple appointment had turned into a downward spiral as I would find out in the next few days. I’ll write about that later.

Over and out, Raj

Sunday, March 01, 2009

MUMM NAPA & Sparkling Wine

Having finished up with the tour of the winery we (Margaret,Ramiro and I) headed off to our next stop in the Napa Valley tour to MUMM NAPA.  Of course the interesting part was that our guide Ramiro had no clue where this place was at and for about 15 minutes we debated on its name, confused between NUNN and MUMM. Interestingly with the help of the iPhone and Google maps we quickly discovered the route and headed in the general direction until we arrived at MUMM NAPA.

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Click here to read more on MUMM NAPA

I was actually looking forward to this tour cause personally I like champagne better that wine. Same old drill we went for the tour and the first thing i learnt really got me.  Apparently if this stuff is not made in a specific place in France, it cannot be called “Champagne”, WHAT!. Oh yeah anywhere else it is called “Sparkling Wine”. Ok I get it, the French are picky, they probably have a good reason to be, I just don't care.

I wont get into the details of the process, you can get that from http://www.madehow.com. However it is worth the while calling out that specific step through which they get rid of the dead yeast in the bottles by freezing them was fascinating.

Ramiro, Margaret and I retired to the lounge area to taste some of the Sparkling wines from MUMM NAPA and then headed home.  It was a fine way to end our first day in San Francisco. We were looking forward to visiting Alcatraz the next day.

Over and Out, Raj