Saturday, 16 August 2008

half a sliced whole wheat nikon

the morning walk

I had to buy bread, so I bought a camera… When I was on my way to Hartog to buy half a sliced whole wheat bread I looked in the window of Foto Fransen, the photo shop around the corner, and saw a Nikon D70s with a 28-80mm lens for only €295. I had been on the lookout for a second-hand D70s for a while and this price was not bad at all. Gerard, the shop's owner, had bought it from somebody who was upgrading to a new model. This one had only made about 3100 shots, so it was almost brand new. The lens doesn't belong to this camera, but is one from an analog camera. That doesn't matter, since I'll be mostly using my other lenses with this camera anyway.

I slung the camera around my neck and walked on towards Hartog. First I had to drop off a book that Danny had given me for Juf Jo. I know that on Saturday morning she's either in the Hague or still asleep so I dropped it her letterbox.

On my way to Hartog I kept trying out the different functions of the camera. It is almost the same as my Nikon D50, but there are some differences in the way you access the functions. I did manage to make a few photos. The 28-80mm lens works as a 43-122mm on this camera, so it gives you a bit more zoom. Another benefit of using an analog lens on a DX camera is that it is super sharp edge to edge, since the chip in de DX is smaller than 24x36mm. A pleasant surprise, this little lens.

sharp edges, for real and on the photo

Working with a proper camera is so much more fun than fumbling with a point-and-shoot camera. Real zoom, real control over aperture, speed and everything. Control! I'm in control! Today Amsterdam, tomorrow the world! Calm down, take a deep breath and go to Hartog for your bread. Just take the emergency exit.

emergency exit

At Hartog's the queue wasn't too long so I was in and out in a minute. I hadn't had any coffee yet (which is probably why I bought that camera: I was still asleep…) and Hartog was doing a trial run with their new coffee and sandwich shop around the corner. The official opening is on Monday, but today you could see the place in action. I had a very nice cup of coffee. You basically drink your coffee in a bakery; you can also do courses in breadmaking here. The sandwiches they sell are the 'normal' sandwiches you'd make at home: a slice of bread with a topping (cheese, meat, etc) on it. Of course the bread is whole wheat.

hartog's new coffee and sandwich shop; this is where you order

They also sell jam and peanut butter by the jar. Some jars have handwritten labels. It doesn't look industrial at all.

'home' made peanut butter

the evening walk

After lunch I studied the D70s' manual to see what all the knobs and dials were for. The manual is only 208 pages long, so it didn't take that much time. Later in the afternoon I did some more weekend shopping, this time at AH and had a nice mozarella salad dinner.

After dinner I went for a walk with the D70s and all my lenses in the new Lowepro photo bag I had bought Wednesday. It takes a bit getting used to but it was comfortable enough.

I walked to Weesperzijde and saw an almost wrecked boat in the canal opposite the fire brigade.

boat wreck

I crossed the Berlagebrug and walked along Amsteldijk towards the Utrechtsebrug. This is a path I had never taken before.


One of the many benefits of an SLR is that it is switched on and ready to use much faster than a point-and-shoot camera. If I had tried to make a photo of the woman on roller blades pushing her baby's pram with my dinky Pentax I would have been too late.

rollerblades and pram

There were lots of people walking in the same direction as I was. I only realized later that they were all going to the 'Parade', the annual theatre show. This year it was in the park next to the Utrechtsebrug.


I walked past the Parade and went up and across the Utrechtsebrug, and down again on the other side. I was on the Korte Ouderkerkerdijk for the first time in 55 years.


I followed the dike, which took me past the old water tower . . .

water tower

. . . and the new offices of the water utility.

waternet building

At the end of the dike, where it meets the Spaklerweg, is a boat yard. There was very tiny tug boat laid up. This is the sort of boat I'd like to have.

boat yard

I was only a few minutes walk from Amstel Station, where I whimped out and took the #37 bus home. My feet were killing me; I had forgotten to take my 600mg ibuprofen after dinner.


Nicole said...

Congratulations on the new camera! You went walking in our old hood!

The Parade made my eye twitch. We used to have people walking past our windows at all hours of the night, yelling and being general dickheads during that event. It would have been okay if it was for a weekend but two weeks was unpleasant.

Vincent said...

Parade... $#@&^^%!