Friday, July 25, 2008

Educational Fieldtrip to Outer Space (part one)

"My Hasselblad or the FM2?"

I ask myself as I pack my bags for my trip to outer space. You call me on the telephone to remind me that our flight to Irkutsk leaves soon... I should be at the airport. Our rocketship awaits us there... in the god forsaken tundras of Irkutsk, where it will thrust its mighty engines and push us beyond the brim of our atmosphere.

I'm undecided. But I'm sure that I should only bring one camera. My Hasselblad will let me take mighty amazing medium format photos in outer space. Surely a photo of the earth shot only with a Hasselblad would be able to accord it its much deserved awe and wonder. However, my FM2 is much lighter and would allow me 36 photos per roll as opposed to 12 on the Hassie (as I affectionately call my Hasselblad). Surely, those extra frames would come in handy. Who knows, it's not everyday that one gets to visit outer space.

Ringggggggg! Ringggggggg! you call again

"Hurry, the plane leaves in an hour? Where are you? You're not even checked in yet? Are you still fiddling with your cameras?" you say.

I choose...

Hassie, FM2, Hassie, FM2, Hassie, FM2, Hassie, FM2...

Ah what the hell! My Hassie it shall be. I'll just take less photos... but I'll be damn sure that they'll be fucking impressive photos. Well, Neil Armstrong used a Hasselblad when he went to space. Perhaps I should be a Neil Armstrong wannabe. Besides that, it doesn't matter if my Hassie weighs a ton anyway since weight is irrelevant in outer space.

I rush to the airport... As fast as I possibly can... You call me every 5 minutes.

'Where are you?'

'Where are you?'

'Where are you?'

'Where are you?'

'Where are you?'

'Where are you?'

I am 10 minutes away from the airport.

'I'm leaving without out, the plane takes off in 5 minutes... you should just book yourself on the next available flight...'

I see your plane, an Air Siberia Antonov Il-86 flying off into the heavy dark sky. As it penetrate the clouds, the sky breaks and a torrential rain sets free.

I arrive at the airport and immediately enquires about the next available flight. The ticketing agent tells me the next flight leaves only next week. I cannot believe my luck. The rocketship leaves in 2 days... there is no way I can possibly board a flight next week.

The ticketing agents pulls me to the side 'How bad you need to get to Irkutsk?', 'Very' I say....

'For 200 dollars... this is for you only... I think you're a likeable chap... I'll put you in a twin otter that leaves in 30 minutes. I don't know how long it will take to get there... it is a twin otter if you know what I mean.'

I really like twin otters, if anything, flights on twin otters are something I romantisize. But is it possible to fly to Siberia in a twin otter.

I weigh my options only to realize that there are none.

to be continued...

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