For Me The Last 12 Months Have Been Difficult

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When I was about 12 I lived with my parents in Virginia. I rode my bike all over and one day I went down the hill that curved at the bottom too fast and crashed. I hurt my right knee, badly. It seemed to heal fairly well but still bothered me. Doctors told me when I was 16 that I should have it operated on. That would have been about 1963. I did not get it operated on. I had a small chip out of the knee bone and sometimes it bothered me. I was drafted for the Vietnam War and when I showed up for my induction physical it bothered the military doctors quite a bit and they rejected me for service.

This is one of the last of 2021 blooms but still going strong in Jan

The knee caused me some pain some of the time. I got out of shape by the time I was 30 and started to do exercise. Remarkably to me when I started jogging my knee got better. A lot better. This worked until I was about 45 and then jogging became a less common thing for me as some of my body parts complained. About the year 2000 I started hiking up the very big hill behind our house and my knee again got better. This worked until 2020 when I just wore out the right knee cartilage and the doctor said it was time to get a knee replacement. So I went on a list and got my knee replaced in June last year. Covid 19 started off in Feb-June of that year and that made many activities I could still do limited. My two volunteer jobs paused. After my knee was replaced I basically sat on my behind for a long time. This was interrupted by physical therapy and slowly getting better.

This is the new 2022 bloom our reliable camellias send out this time every year

It took a lot longer for the replaced knee to get better. By about the fifth month I was getting around pretty good and my wife came down with a serious life changing illness. I injured my right knee falling up the stairs while moving bedding up those stairs. By spending so my time on my butt (much of it unavoidable) my cardio fitness declined significantly. My point, I have written few posts this last year due to just not having much to say and not caring to write about how difficult things were.

So I am just about finished pruning the roses in my garden so they can send out fresh new spring growth and early spring seems to be about ready to burst out around here.

Here is a local hiking path that has new 2022 green on it

My photo taking has gone way down this last year for a few reasons. 1. We have done almost no travel. 2. I have been unable to walk well. 3. The pandemic. But about a month ago I found out one of my favorite old camera shops has new owners and they develop C41 and black and white in house. Later this year they are going to do E6, maybe. So I have shot a few rolls of film, but have yet to develop it. And I have also been shooting some landscape with my existing Nikon Z7, Nikon Z50, and iPhone 13 pro max. I have five lenses for the Nikons that are all Z type. 50mm f1.8, 24-70mm f4, 24-200mm variable f-stop. DX Z 16-50mm, 50-250mm. The 50-250 is a great lens. The 16-50 is pretty darn good too. My two Nikons are now just over 2 years old. They work quite well and the latest Nikon software updates have made big improvements in them. The fast focus and quick auto focus abilities are way way better than when these cameras were introduced. What has not changed is that beautiful lenses tend to be fixed primes and not zooms. That was also the same with my last Sony the the Z7iii. With the Sony my 55mm f1.8 gave beautiful renditions. The Nikon 50mm f1.8 is the same. I will likely buy at least one new Nikon lens this year and have not decided which. Or I may re-buy a Minolta 100mm f2.8 Macro. I stupidly sold my old one and it gave gorgeous results. Nikon has a new 105 Z f2.8 macro that I would like to have too. But the Nikon lens is about 8 times the price of what I likely can buy a used Minolta for. The difference is film only at this time on the Minolta. I used to use the Sony A7iii with Minolta lenses and an adapter. The Minolta 100mm f2.8 macro worked great.

Farther down the trail.

The Minolta fixed prime lenses also seemed to work better than the zooms. Minolta and Sony have both allowed other lens makers access to their lens mounts and technical specs. And so I have very good third party lenses for my two Minolta bodies. Both were made by Sigma. To my eye the Sigma 50mm 2.8 is sharper than the Minolta 50mm f1.4. But that is my newer Minolta 55mm filter size example. I used to have a 49mm filter size that was also 50mm and 1.4, it was a better lens.

I also still have my Olympus OM2n and Voightlander Prominent. I have an almost finished roll in the Oly, plus a partly finished roll in the Voightlander. I will be working to finish these rolls and get the film developed.

The results for all this is soon to be reported on.

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