Friday, December 18, 2009

Year in review

Well, it's the time we all, or some anyway, sit down and look back on the year. For me it was actually two years, starting in mid-March of 2008, when I photographed the St. Patrick's Day parade. All was fine for a few days, since any bug or virus takes 2-3 days to incubate in you, until I began to feel sick, with reverse flu-like symptoms, meaning the opposite reaction with the digestive system but otherwise all the rest.

Except this lasted for months, and over the course of that year and into 2009, food is my enemy, became more so. It was in December 2008 the dentist and then the endodontist in March 2009 discovered I had an infection in my jawbone which likely effected the rest of my body. The tooth is fixed but the body will take 2-3 years to recover without drugs.

That said, this year has been the rollercoaster for my body and food. Needless to say, it had the emotional and mental effects too, and not for the good. In short I lost interest and energy last year and this year frustrated with the problem and why doctors couldn't do much beyond keeping trying tests.

I can't and don't blame them, it's hard to diagnose something so vague as your digestive system doesn't work right and swings between the extremes for no obvious reasons or as a result of specific foods, except some produce consistent results and effects but not always, or reaction to something or some event. In short, my life and work was scheduled around food and eating, the what, when, where, etc. so problems didn't happen when I wasn't ready.

I think you can get the picture. It simply brought my life, my work, and my photography to a minimum, and over the last few months it's getting better. Not normal, just better. And better enough to do more, except it's winter and cold (Reynaud's Syndrome). but I'll take it. Like I have a choice?

I did mange to get a lot done with the Website and Mt. Rainier NP photo guide and history projects. Which leads to 2010 plans, which is, hopefully, get better, resume my fitness regime, which took a hiatus, to resume hiking again, and finish a personal goal among other things which are as follows.

First, finish the first complete draft of the Mt. Rainier photo guide. I have three sections to research and write and all to update and expand. Then, convert the mess into a book of some type and format, initially a PDF with embedded links to the Website. The second is into a publication format complete with maps to find a publisher, and as they say, "Yeah, right."

Second, finish the Mt. Rainier history projects, or at least the major ones, like the 1896 expedition and the 1915 topographic map. But these need more research (a couple of archives) and writing some type and format of a report for publication somewhere. That's the unknown except folks at the NPS and USGS have expressed interest, but what and into print they can't say.

The other history project, the early photographers (1890-1900) will need more time, research and conversations with archivists to see the original negatives or get scanned images of them. Of those found, many are too fragile to work with and all are in controlled environments with restricted access. And some still haven't been found.

Third, get the photography back on track, both the Mt. Rainier work photographing trails and places and the large format work. I know and learned the basic, and produced good transparencies to date (paid having a few decades of film experience and some common sense), but I need to just to more, but at $5-8 per sheet, it's not a cheap hobby. And I need my new camera, still "in production" (since December 2006) for the other lenses.

Fourth, get a new computer. I was unfortunate to buy one of the last Power PC Mac G5's. And sometime next year, there won't be any new software for it as Apple and Adobe, among others, drop support for the PPC's. That's a big cost item next year, but at least all the peripheral hardware and sofware and some applications I have on this PPC is transferable to any new Intel G5.

So, that's the review and forecast. And as they say, it will happen as it happens.