Scripps Pier with Peter

Posted on Dec 29, 2011 in Uncategorized

I went to Scripps Pier again (one of my favorite places in La Jolla) with my friend Peter.  He wanted to try out his wide angle lens.  This is still one of my favorite places to photograph in the world. There is beautiful sunsets, a nice dramatic pier, lots of surfers, and some pretty dramatic coastline.  There are so many nice  things you can photograph in by just changing where your camera is placed. It really is a place of beauty.

Tu wears an Ao Dai

Posted on Dec 27, 2011 in Uncategorized

In Vietnam the woman wear a traditional dress called an Ao Dai.  It is tight fitting silk tunic worn over pants.  The origination of the word is from Chinese and means long padded coat.  While the dress does not look at all like this currently it might have in the past.  The Ao Dai is a very important dress in Vietnam and at almost any formal event that is what you will see the woman wear.   Tu and I went down to the beach and she posed in the Ao Dai along the La Jolla beach.  It was quite nice.

Snow Party at the Fendleys

Posted on Dec 25, 2011 in Uncategorized

Bridget and Michael have done it again.  The threw another party that amazed everyone in the neighborhood.  This time it was a snow party!  All the kids in the town of Encinitas seemed to show up to throw snowballs, make snow angels and slide down their front lawn in the 7 (Seven) tons of fresh powdery snow that the Fendley’s had imported from a tiny Swiss Village high in the Alps.  The snow had a European Air to it and the fun bounced in the air as everyone ran around having a beautiful time.  If you look closely you might even see my mom taking an intense ride down the Fendley Slopes.  We commemorated the day with a little video to remember the good times we had.  What a happy day!


The Money Pit

Posted on Dec 18, 2011 in Uncategorized

Patrick, my brother bought and old Ford Truck. I mean this thing is beautiful.  It’s got a low profile, nice blue paint and all original interior.  When you get in the truck you smell the old seats and the faint hint of gasoline – you know that smell.  The old car smell.  Well the car is a beauty but definitely a money pit for Patrick.  He is always putting it in the shop for just one more repair.  The old blue truck isn’t too reliable.  We had a hard time getting it started today because they battery drained out.  Time to bring it back in for another repair. Got to love the old blue Ford Truck.

Stunning Photograph’s of Antelope Canyon

Posted on Dec 16, 2011 in photography

I just returned from Arizona and had a chance to visit a very beautiful place called Antelope Canyon. Antelope Canyon is called Tsé bighánílíní, “the place where water runs through rocks” by the Navajo and the formations under the ground are some of the most beautiful you will see.  The canyon is deep but it still allows for lots of natural sunlight to come through the slots.  That makes this a more beautiful place than many caves that I have visited which are lit up by a variety of colored lights.  All the light in this canyon is natural which makes it the most beautiful to photograph.  There are two canyons, Upper and Lower Antelope Valley.  The Upper canyon is very famous for light beams that shoot from directly above into the canyon and make for some marvelous photos.  The lower canyon which I had basically to myself for 2 hours is a more difficult and narrow canyon than upper canyon and does not have the same light beams.  People usually come to this place during the summer months because the sun is literally overhead and provides the most dramatic light into the canyons.  That’s probably why I had this place to myself.  But the pictures came out very well and I had as much time as I needed in the various places.

It was cold in the canyon (about 30 degrees that day) but it was very calm and peaceful inside the canyon.  I could literally hear every breath that I took since I was all alone.  The canyon is owned by the Navajo Indians and they charge $26 dollars for a photographers pass but you need to bring a tripod and an SLR lens to get that pass.    Also the photographer pass allows you to go on your own without  a guide so you can avoid the crowds.  The canyon can be a bit dangerous because it is subject to flash floods and the slots can fill up very quickly when the rains come.  If it starts raining you need to exit very quickly to avoid drowning in the canyon.  In 1997 12 tourist died in the canyon when flash floods two hours earlier miles away poured into the canyon.  The ladders in place at the time were swept away by the flooding waters through the cave so they had no way to get out of the cave as the raging water swept them to their death.  This canyon is beautiful but can be dangerous.

Photographing Monument Valley Utah

Posted on Dec 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

If you ever watched old western movies they probably had some iconic scenes in this place – Monument Valley.  Talk about beautiful, this place really took it to another level. Well it wasn’t very easy to get to – many hours driving by car across flat dry cold desert but I finally made it there by around 3pm in the afternoon.  Monument Valley is actually in Utah (right on the Arizona border) and it is in Navajo Country.  When I got there I had a little over an hour and a half to take the rugged trails by car to visit all of the different parts of the park.  It wasn’t easy as the road was all dirt and very bumpy.  It was so dusty but so beautiful – everything was red sand and the sun was setting so the colors were so warm.  I was amazed at how the formations appear to be crumbling. The soft sandstone is constantly changing and in 100 years this place may look very different.  Monument Valley is one of the 7 wonders of the world.  What a beautiful and fantastic place.


Watchin Ollie

Posted on Dec 14, 2011 in Uncategorized

Bridget, my sister, had to work late this afternoon so she asked if we could pick up Ollie and watch him after school for a few hours.  What an afternoon we had. In the course of a little over an hour we ended up playing soccer, eating pizza, watching movies and playing “ink a bink a bottle of ink”. I lost – I stink.  Ollie has such a great and happy disposition and he never stops moving.  Like a lightening ball of energy so you always have to be on your toes.  I really enjoyed the afternoon with Ollie, it’s always fun to spend time with him.

Windansea Beach – San Diego’s Surfing Jewel

Posted on Dec 13, 2011 in Uncategorized

I am lucky enough to live right next to one of the most iconic surfing spots in the world – Windansea Beach in La Jolla.  During the winter months the swell in the area is such that perfect 6-8 foot waves roll in gently providing some of the best surf in California.  In 1946, they erected a palm covered shack on the rocks and it became known as the Windansea Surf Shack.  Locals still take care of the shack replacing the palm fronds when they blow away in large storms.

The beach first became known because it appeared in the classic surf movie, The Endless Wave and was known for having some of the best surfers in the world frequent the beach.  The beach was also the inspiration for the “Beach Party” movies that became very popular in the 1960’s and Tom Wolf’s book “The Pump House Gang” was based on surf rats that were based at Windansea beach.  There is a pump house near the beach and that is why the book was called that.

I usually head down to the beach at least 2 to 3 times a week just to marvel at the sunsets and watch the surfers out on the break.  It’s a place that you probably don’t want to surf at if you are a beginning surfer and not a local.  They will literally chase you out of the water and there have been some violent confrontations at the beach over the years.  I love Windansea beach and I am so happy to live here.