In an effort to get some fresh air, kill time, and generally make me feel better, I got out of the house recently to try and capture a glimpse of winter with the camera.
The reason why I liked this photo is because it is a good example of the rule of thirds, both vertically and horizontally. The subject matter is cliche, but the composition works well. In this case, it was perhaps more fluke that skill, as you know, sheep aren’t all that compliant.
Shutter 1/160, f/9, ISO 200, 45mm, CPL used.
Yesterday, to escape my chemo haze and to face the stormy weather, I went for a walk along Tamaki Drive. This shot is taken looking back at Auckland City from the wharf at Okahu Bay. To say it was windy is an understatement. I actually feared the wind would blow the camera into the water. The day was also very hazy, which results in low contrast conditions, not the best for photography.
Shutter 1/50 f/7.1 ISO 100 Focal Length: 250mm
Tomorrow I start chemotherapy again… for the second time. I’m looking forward to it about as much I would a hole in the head, but because this is the way the cookie crumbles, if I want to survive, chemo it is. This last week leading up to to it has had some absolutely amazing weather, and it has made me appreciate the enforced free time that I have had over the last year. I appreciate it a lot less when it is rainy and I’m stuck inside feeling nauseous.
My apartment has felt somewhat like a prison over the last 12 months. Hannah and I have considered moving a couple of times to a slightly bigger place, but with rental prices the way they are in this part of town, we can’t really afford or justify it.
This is the view of the Auckland sky tower we have from our place, a view that I am completely sick of. I’ve had to look at it far more than the average person would living in a place like this. And now, as I am about to embark on the chemo process all over again, I’m both weary, and appreciative.
Weary because its sucks to be feeling sick and miserable;
Appreciative because I’m glad that every extra day I get is one that I can spend with Hannah and with creation;
Weary because I’m emotionally shattered, and soon to be physically shattered;
Appreciative because I know I’m part of a plan bigger than me;
Weary because I know all this fighting for life will probably end in death;
Appreciative because I know death is not end of everything;
I’m increasingly discovering that life is a tug and pull between juxtaposing ideals and reality. The way we WANT life to be and the way life actually is. Sometimes we think life should be an ‘either, or’ proposition, mostly i’m discovering its a ‘both, and’ one. The good with the bad, the beautiful with the ugly, Christmas with chemo, and life with death. Each holds hands with the other, unable exist without the other, yet inexorably bound to opposition.
Isn’t that what grace is about? Forgiveness in the presence of unforgivability?
My life is slowly being polarised to either end of any given spectrum, great joy with great sadness, a ‘both, and’ proposition that I dearly wish was ‘either, all’. My wishing will however, be in vain, as life is never what we wish it to be, because if it was, our wishing would create a world with no contrasts. A world with no contrasts is like a world with no colour.
The beauty is in the contrast.
Thanks for listening.
This has just been released by the government, as one of the many pre-election promises. As a medical student with a wife who is a doctor, this is worth $20,000 per year to us. Subsequently, depending on what the ‘hard to staff’ areas are, we would seriously consider such an offer. I wonder if Auckland is ‘hard to staff’?… From memory, there are about 25% vacancy rates for junior doctors at the moment within the Auckland DHB’s… it sounds hard to staff to me! 🙂
“The Government today announced voluntary bonding schemes to encourage more health professionals, teachers and veterinarians to work in hard to staff areas.
Under the scheme, reported in the Herald this morning, graduates would get student cash incentives to work in understaffed areas for a five year period starting from 2011. Details included:
* Health professionals: In the first year 100 doctors and 250 midwives and nurses were expected to be voluntarily bonded to work in areas with critical workforce shortages. Similar numbers were expected to be added yearly.
Doctors would get $10,000 a year (after tax); midwives $3500 and nurses $2833.”
Click the heading to read the full article.