The YaYa Brotherhood of the Traveling Pants

Posted: April 8, 2008    Categories: Australasia, Australia, Pacific/Oceania

These are my pants. There are many other like them, but these are mine. (yes, I actually took off my pants to take this photo)

These are my pants. There are many other like them, but these are mine. (yes, I actually took off my pants to take this photo)

As you may have noticed, this blog really isn’t a diary. I don’t like to narrative descriptions of every meal I ate and everything I did every day. Honestly, you’d be bored to tears.

Traveling like I do isn’t like being on vacation. When you are on vacation, you try to cram as much rest and relaxation in, in the time you got, even if it kills you.

I try to set out with one or two objectives for each day. Most days it might be going to see something, take photos of something, do something with the website, go from A to B, etc. I usually try not to schedule anything if I’m actually moving from place to place. I’ve discovered it is foolish if you are in a new city to try and go sightseeing for more than about 4-6 hours.

Since getting back from Tasmania this week, I’ve been focused on archiving my photos and sending them back to the US. That was a high priority because the longer I didn’t do it, the greater the risk of something happening. Once I got that done and out the door, there was only one thing left I needed to do in Sydney, and that was shoot the footage for my podcast.

I actually have footage for about 8 episodes ready to go, all from previous video I shot earlier in my trip. Before I go live, I wanted to do a particular first episode and I wanted to do it here in Sydney. So yesterday, I put my video camera in my small backpack, grabbed my tripod, and headed out.

I get to the harbor and start shooting some the establishing shots I want. I should also note that I didn’t really get to the harbor until about 3pm and it was overcast. By the time I got to where I wanted to shoot myself talking, the sun was very low, directly in the camera (when it wasn’t behind clouds), and dark. Oh, and because I left my SLR and camera bag back in my room I didn’t have my extra lens, microphone, or the remote control, which is needed when you are both the camera man and the star of the show.

In the end, it was so dark you couldn’t see my face and the sound was so poor without the mic that I said “this isn’t gonna happen”. I’d come back tomorrow, earlier in the day and do it right.

Doing video has been a learning experience for me. Like photography, I’ve never done it before. However, I at least have a solid year of shooting still photos and 10,000 photographs under my belt. I just wasn’t thinking in terms of lighting and sound.

I was pretty dejected. What to do, what to do? Answer: SHOPPING!!!

I have two pair of pants I carry with me. One I purchased before the trip and one I had been wearing for a few years before I left. That pair had been with me for six weeks up in the Rocky Mountains at geology field camp and the entire year of this trip. They are showing their age. The zipper on the inside pocket (which I use all the time) is broken. The saps on the leg cuffs are broken, small holes are starting to show and there is a dirt ground in so heavily, that no washing will ever make it clean.

It was time to put the pants out of their misery.

I got a new pair of very similar pants at the North Face store. I can say with pride that my waist has gotten smaller as they new pants are an L where as the old ones were an XL. I have no idea if I’ve lost weight or pants sizes since I started traveling, but I must be doing something right. Walking everywhere, everyday probably has something to do with that.

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