There Must Be Magic

By GirlWithACamera

Rhododendron in the Rain

It's been a very rainy couple of days. I prefer to take outdoor photos whenever possible, but pouring-down rain can pose some challenges for the outdoor photographer.

I was out and about to attend a conference on Monday on the topic of adult learners, but it was so rainy, I didn't get to stop anywhere to take pictures. I did take some pictures inside the Penn Stater, where the conference was held, but the lighting wasn't so great, and they all turned out looking a little muddy.

Maybe some of the rest of you have a back-up blip strategy: an idea you carry in your back pocket for a blip when all else fails. My back-up blip strategies include: What can I see (and photograph) from my front porch?

The cat and I sit on the front porch a lot, me holding him firmly in my arms (for he is an inside-only cat; a busier-than-you-might-expect road runs in front of the house). From there we see lots of birds, an occasional deer, bunnies, and let's not forget the chipmunk who mercilessly teases the cat. (I fear the cat, a normally gentle soul, is plotting the chipmunk's demise - however, Dexter's an indoor cat, and so he doesn't have much opportunity to interact with the outdoor creatures, other than to pant and huff and chitter and tap his tail while watching from a window.)

And of course, in addition to the local wildlife, we can also see the rhododendron bushes, which are right up against the porch.

The bright pink rhododendrons have finished blooming already and are turning brown, but these bright-pinky-purple ones are in their prime and the very-pale-pink-almost-white ones are just starting (interesting that the different colors bloom at different times).

Also of note: this photo was taken not with my Canon SX40 HS, but with my older, smaller, cheaper camera, the Canon SX120 IS. (I paid around $400 for the SX40 in December, just before Christmas; and around $200 for the SX120 in February, about two years ago.)

I'm heading to the beach this weekend with my sister (Atlantic City on Sunday and Monday, staying at the Trump Taj Mahal, hooray!), and I have to admit I am really torn as to which camera to take.

My sister and I love the beach and the boardwalk, and we enjoy the casinos and restaurants. There is a lighthouse within walking distance of the hotel, too - we climbed it the last time we were there, so I don't feel the need to do that again - but I do harbor hopes of visiting it again and taking some pictures. Maybe on Monday morning, when we walk the beach sipping our large coffees from Starbucks, enjoying the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean, and looking for seashells.

The SX40 is a bit bigger camera, and gets some crisper shots, and has the awesome zoom, but while relatively compact, it's not quite as transportable as the other camera. The SX120 is smaller and easy to tuck into a fanny pack or purse, and VERY easy to use (it truly is a point-and-shoot), but some of the pictures aren't quite as crisp, and of course it doesn't have that great zoom.

My husband also worries that someone will try to steal the bigger/better camera if I take it, but I think any self-respecting thief would go after one of the many much pricier cameras I've seen people toting around on the boardwalk. Hmm, maybe I'll wait to see what the weather is going to be, and let that help me decide . . . Better weather, bigger camera; worse weather, smaller camera . . .

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