while using the bathroom this morning i was also explaining american gods to wuweiyu, after she watched all 6 episodes based on my recommendation (she's pretty knowledgable about the latest US television shows). she was still slightly confused by the story, especially after i told her not to research anything on the web for fear of book spoilers. i ate a yogurt for breakfast. although it was warm enough for shorts, i wore pants instead, with a t-shirt. i was taking the trek utility bike because i planned on going to haymarket afterwards (which has now become my post-pride-parade routine). before i left around 11am, i sprayed my head and arms with sunblock, it was shaping up to be a sunny day and i knew i'd get burned if i didn't have some UV protection.
i tried to leave a little early so i could walk around a bit on boylston street, get a preview of what's in store, take a few warmup shots to get myself in the snapshooting mood. getting to pride via bike (or any big festivity in boston) is the best way to get there. streets are closed off to cars but open to bicycles, and you avoid the congestion of pedestrians crowded on the sidewalks. i got to copley right around 11:30am, parking the bike at the corner of clarendon street and columbus avenue. from there i walked downhill back to copley square to see some of the waiting processions. there wasn't much time before the parade started so i only caught a glimpse of the head of the parade, before returning to the crest of the hill outside of back bay station.
i was told a while back that pride was a march not a parade. but in light of all the achievements that've been made for LGBT rights - from anti-discrimination laws to legalized gay marriages to ongoing battles over issues like transgender recognition - pride has become more of a parade, more so than ever. in fact, that's what the organizers call it now, the boston pride parade. it's also become quite the spectacle, and maybe the message becomes diluted, as any organization or company can support a float and join the parade. pride parade seems like an endless procession of church and school groups, corporations (supermarkets, banks, cable and phone companies, biotech firms, food manufacturers), and politicians.
i'm a stationary photographer. i like to find a good spot and then shoot from just that one spot. but i like to be more of a mobile photographer. especially in a parade setting, when sometimes you have to move around to get the best shots, as the better view could be on the other side. so that was my goal for today, to move around more. sometimes i'd be on the crest of the hill, sometimes i'd walk down closer to copley square (where the procession was starting from), and other times i'd be closer to the south end. it was a sunny day which has a tendency to create high-contrast shadows. i kept that in mind, tried not to shoot directly into the sun. as the day wore on, shadows began to fall on north-south clarendon street, from west to east.
unlike last year, there was a lot more people this year, from parade goers to parade participants. the low turnout last year was probably in some part related to the weather, which was rainy. today was a spectacular sunny june day, so a lot more people were out and about. the parade was also longer than i remembered it, didn't end until almost 3:30pm.
afterwards i biked northeast up columbus avenue, along the edge of chinatown, cutting through the empty financial district, finally to haymarket. with the pride concert happening in city hall plaza just across the street, there was an influx of people in haymarket. a lot of vendors were selling cherries, i bought 2 lbs. of rainier cherries for $3. they weren't the best quality but at time price it was a steal. there was also a lot of traditional red/black cherries that were selling for $2/lbs. i also got some gold nugget oranges, now selling at $1 for 8; i bought 16 oranges. finally, 2 pineapples for $3.
i returned home by 4:30pm. after a shower and a change of clothes, i took the motorcycle to belmont. it's always a nice feeling taking the motorcycle after i've been bicycling, i better appreciate the fact that i no longer have to pedal. my mother had already finished making another crochet pikachu doll, to replace the one she sold a few days ago.
my father's grub hoe arrived a few days ago. it's the traditional digging tool in china, although hard to find here in the US. he ordered it online and was surprised to learn the manufacturer was chinese but rather brazilian. he assembled the hoe and went outside to dig out some underground bamboo.
i wanted to check out the photos i took earlier, but there was on problem: i didn't have anymore blank space on my laptop. so in order to download the photos, i first had to clear out some data. i grabbed my portable hard drives, looking to backup the photos on my macbook pro, which takes up the bulk of the space. i spend the next 2 hours copying one set on photos from one drive to another, juggling between the 3 drives. something seemed off, like i was missing another backup, so i went searching, and sure enough, i dug up a 4th drive, that had 1TB of empty space.
finally by midnight i was able to download my photos: 2746 photos total, out of which 317 photos i selected as good.