Wednesday 22 April 2009: as I stuffed it into my rucksack
I dithered over taking propercamera to work today... usually when cycling in I'll take it with one lens attached in a small bag rather than propercamerabag so that it can be stuffed into my rucksack for the journey in but still removed and wandered about with at lunch. As I thought I'd need all the available bagspace for bringing my undelivered parcel back from the DPD depot at Newbridge I left it at home, thinking that it would be interesting to see if I could use my phone's camera and get anything useful out of it at the end of the day.
I did try, though ended up taking a spare photo of a pair of earplugs sitting on top of an envelope with the propercamera after fiddling about with the phonecamera pictures for half an hour and not liking them. It's possible that I wasn't trying hard enough when I took the pictures but there weren't any I'd be happy to use except to use for twitpic or send as a text message. I'm only using this on after some deliberation just because the earplugs don't relate to the contents of the day in the slightest. I've been wondering recently about what will happen when I upgrade to something mildly less portable than a D80 and whether it would be wise to adopt a two-camera lifestyle with a wee portable compact for times (such as when bicycling) when an SLR takes up too much space. The main reason I don't think I'd do this is just that whatever gets spent on a compact is removed from the main camera fund. I've also been looking around for a handlebar bag capable of carrying propercamera and a spare lens or two which would solve the problem for less cost. Phone camera will always be available in times of desperation such as camera-breakage or thievery but the point about last resorts is that they come last.
Although I managed to get onto the road by five I didn't get to the impressively clearly-labelled depot until the nominated time of 18:00, mostly due to going the automated busway/Edinburgh Park/South Gyle/nightmare-during-rush-hour interchange route rather than the occasionally dull and sometimes slightly boggy and lumpy canal towpath. The bit up to the bypass is certainly quicker on the bike path next to the bus (and eventually tram) way than on the 15mph-limit canal path but getting from anywhere to anywhere else on the westbound side of the A8 is never fun. Eastbound it's OK as the pavement is dual-use for feet and bicycles and one can whizz along it all the way over the top to the road which eventually leads to Cramond but even just getting across the splits-off-the-the-bypass channel to get into the A8 west lane took several minutes and lots of backtracking when paths turned out to lead nowhere, all the time breathing in exhaust-particles. Luckily the turn-off for the industrial estate was not in much demand when I reached it making it easy to change lanes into it after making the usual lane-error we make when driving out to the airport-parking thingby. It was then a simple matter of chaining my bike to the fence outside the turnstile, waiting for five minutes for someone to answer the call button then trundling to the reception at the back of the building, waiting another minute for that door to be opened then waving credentials at the bloke who appeared. The box turned out to be reasonably compactly-packed and fitted easily in my rucksack for the return trip along the canal where there were more joggers wearing headphones to fruitlessly ding my bell at but less exhaust fumes and fewer inconvenient car-biased junctions.