I realized I haven’t updated this since my vacation. I’m back!
In fact, I’m back at the office and shouldn’t really be updating this at all, but the work load here is very light right now simply due to the holidays. I expect I’ll be spending the week trying to learn something about the company’s web site staging system and working on a UI mockup for a “simple” web interface. (I put “simple” in quotes because the more it gets specced out by others, the less simple it actually is, but that’s always the way of things.)
Christmas was quiet, and I mean that as a positive thing. The trip wasn’t quiet, really: it was, truth to tell, a little harried, with two trips down to Tampa and three people coming up to visit me and mom in Ridge Manor. I got to see everyone I expected to—which wasn’t quite everyone I wanted to, but I suppose that’s also often the way of things. Some people said they wanted to see me and I wasn’t able to get back to them (like wingywoof) and some people I mentioned wanting to see went submarine silent when the subject was brought up. So then.
Mom doesn’t usually give “big” presents but rather tends to give a lot of good stuff; in our family, that usually means books and music, and I did get a couple of each. Every so often a big present does sneak out, though, and I got one that I’m still stunned by: a Nikon D70, a digital SLR. tugrik greeted this with “Excellent! You’re in the enemy camp now, but excellent!” (He—and I think all of the folks I know out here with SLRs, like alinsa, revar and farix_arkwright—use Canon products. The photo geeks I knew in Florida, including varjohaltia, Mirage and Vince, were all Nikon guys; I’m not sure what tacit uses.) When I got back, tugrik gave me a 50mm f/1.8 lens for the camera, which was the lens I’d have probably bought by this weekend. This was also somewhat stunning—I can’t thank him enough. (I know I haven’t thanked my mother enough.)
Of course, I immediately thought, “I need to get a basic set of filters for this.” Even going the fairly inexpensive way of using the Cokin P system (which lets you use $6 adapters for various lens sizes—Cokin’s own filters aren’t very good, apparently, but the system is such a good idea in principle that good filter companies make products that work with it!), a couple of neutral density (ND) filters and graduated ND filters would be around $200, and I don’t want to ask what a couple good circular polarizers would cost. And do I still have a tripod somewhere? Hmm. …and so the SLR money pit beckons.
More seriously, though, I hope all of my friends have had—and continue to have—a good holiday period, however and to what degree they celebrate anything. And here’s hoping for a good 2005… I’ll have to think on just what I’m looking for next year myself.