travel: summer 2015 on film

// Friday, October 16, 2015

First things first: I got a job! I may or may not elaborate on here (probably won’t), but suffice to say I’m thrilled, and it’s the job I really wanted to get and hoped I would get, and I’ll be back to working full-time, Monday-through-Friday, come next Monday, and I couldn’t be happier. We still need to get our living situation fully sorted out, but we’re definitely settling into California nicely.

I’m still trying to narrow down the road trip pictures from the 842 I took on my camera + a similar amount that my boyfriend took on his camera + the several hundred pictures I took on my phone. This week, however, I finally got my film developed: inspired partly by my roommate, and partly by this year+ long film project (in concept, not content: it reminded me how much I like the look of film, and how nice it would be to have some intentional, delayed-gratification pictures), I bought a Canon EOS Rebel K2 body used from Amazon for $25 and some Kodak 400 film, because I was originally intending this to be a “take pictures indoors of alllll of the places you live because nostalgia-proofing” project, and while that didn’t really happen, I can honestly say that that was the best thirty-some-odd dollars I’ve spent in a long time. I didn’t do as good of a job taking the number of pictures I’d planned – it took me until California to get through one 24exp. roll, but I’m very pleased with the quality. One or two of these might have been shot with the Canon 50mm f/1.8 II lens, but the large large majority of these were with the Canon 28mm f/1.8 USM lens, which is my boyfriend’s technically but basically lives on my camera(s). Film used was Kodak Ultra Max 400. Also, I can’t tell if these look slightly blurry because of the computer I’m using or because I resized them to not be giant, so if they appear blurry (not grainy, but legitimately blurry) on your screen, I’m sorry and let me know so I can figure out a way to fix it for next time I post film.

ANYWAYS: all of this is a long winded way of saying I took a bunch of pictures this summer before I left New England, and I want to share them. There are some other pictures from this roll that I’ll share later – some old apartment pictures, some very recent pictures of Las Trampas, but for now, I want to share Portsmouth, NH and Old Orchard Beach, ME on film. Because film is great, and also having tangible matte (!!!) prints is all sorts of wonderful. I even found a magnetic photo album, so I am (a) 90 years old and/or an accidental hipster and (b) all of the happy. These all were taken in August 2015 and are unretouched digital scans of the film. Without further ado: summer 2015 on film.

film-1-nh-flowersPortsmouth, NH.

film-2-nh-boatsPortsmouth, NH.

film-3-oob-shell-shockOld Orchard Beach, ME.

I love it here: we’ve been coming up at least once a summer, sometimes just for a weekend, sometimes for a week, since I was about three. It’s changed a lot over the last twenty-odd years, and the crowd varies a lot year to year. The motel we always used to stay in burned down; the train tracks are still forbidden to cross down away from town but everyone does anyway; breakfasts at Venetia’s are great. Rick’s Fried Clams will always have my heart (seriously: the best fried clams!), though I don’t have a film picture of them. The rest of the pictures are all from Old Orchard Beach. If you’re in Maine, it’s worth a stop: it’s touristy, but the beach is nice and the pier is small but kind of great and terrible all at once, and there are gorgeous sunsets. There’s an outdoor amusement park of sorts, and an indoor/outdoor arcade, and Dolce Crema Cafe has good coffee and sandwiches and gelato (their pastries look great but I’ve never tried them). Bonus: they’re on the stretch of street that I think of as an extension of the pier, so you can get your coffee and then walk down to the beach in about a minute, or walk along the pier and people watch from above. I should’ve taken a picture of them, too, in hindsight. But, hey: goals for next time I’m there.










on notebooks and pens (but mostly notebooks)

// Monday, January 20, 2014

In keeping with my 2014 resolutions, I’ve started documenting my life more, keeping what amounts to a belated daily journal (inspired by a friend’s notion of daily logging – her version is more detailed and dedicated than I can see myself truly able to maintain, but it’s more or less what I aspire to do). I purchased an extra large Moleskine notebook (the yellow-orange color of this one, but in the 7.5×10 hardcover version) for it; it’s lovely and really kind of oddly calming to write in a large notebook, because usually I end up using the 5×8 Moleskines and then end up feeling like I’ve written a lot when really I haven’t written any words at all, relatively speaking. When I’m away from my room, though, I write in a grey 5×8 volant journal because it’s easy to carry in my purse, write, and then transfer said writing to the larger one. It’s a process, and I haven’t gotten fully into the habit yet, but I’m working on it. I’m only a couple days behind at the moment.

Anyways, so now that I’ve taken to writing in this nice, pretty, well-crafted journal with nice pens (through work, I’ve rekindled my love affair with Vision Elite microball pens? The ones I really want to find that my roommate has, I can’t, which is a bummer. I know they exist? They’re the cloudy micropoint uniball ones, and they’re perfect. But the ones I have will do, so whatever), I started thinking about how different paper/pens really can make a difference in how I perceive the quality of what I’m writing and also in whether or not I’m motivated to write (which is why I splurged on the Moleskine in the first place). That thought process, in turn, made me remember one of the quotes I latched onto in the novel One Day by David Nicholls, and how fitting it is:

“She drinks pints of coffee and writes little observations and ideas for stories with her best fountain pen on the linen-white pages of expensive notebooks. Sometimes, when it’s going badly, she wonders if what she believes to be a love of the written word is really just a fetish for stationary. The true writer, the born writer, will scribble words on scraps of litter, the back of bus tickets, on the wall of a cell …. But other times she finds herself writing happily for hours, as if the words had been there all along, content and alone in her one-bedroom flat…” (114)

Because for me, both of those are true. When I worked at Borders (I miss Borders more than I should, maybe) before and during college (likely would’ve been after, too, if they hadn’t gone under before I graduated), I wrote on the backs of receipts and blank receipt paper all of the time. But now that I don’t have prolonged periods of idle, wandering thoughts while standing at a cash register, I find that if I’m not writing on the computer, I’ll only really write if I’m writing in a good quality notebook or on good quality paper. Sometimes that worries me. That’s something I’m going to work on getting better about as well. Writing more is writing more is writing more, regardless of what kind of paper is used. But regardless, more writing: a thing I am going to do.

In keeping with that mentality, this past weekend (of the 10th, not this most recent one), the goal was to be productive at least part of the time, so T. and I went to D2 Java in Exeter, NH for coffee, followed by lunch at Me & Ollie’s Bakery and Cafe, which then turned into a writing and working afternoon, and it was the most wonderful. D2 Java, by the way, is one of my absolute favorite places for coffee; a post about afternoons in Exeter is forthcoming very soon, because it merits more than a few sentences. For now, though, I’ll leave you with a picture from Saturday. Coziest of cozy.

coffee and productivity, january 2014

coffee and productivity, january 2014