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Say Cheese!



I had a few hobbies when I was young, photography being one of them. You'd never guess that I used to take photographs for numerous projects including a magazine article on the Beatles of all people! Living fairly close to Liverpool, some 23 miles away, I was asked by an American friend to take shots of the new Beatle City Exhibition. I shot the whole thing in black and white and the result was amazing.


I shot weddings too, mostly for friends, in fact, that's how I kind of got into cake decorating, then flower arranging. I was almost a one man show wedding planner, or woman I should say! As the years went on, I got married, had a child and then the rest is history as they say! My cameras lay idle at the back of the cupboard and then progressed to a cardboard box, finally the shed! Since then it's been birthday pictures, holiday snaps, and an handbag item for my daughter whenever she goes out in the evening. A small compact digital camera we bought a few years ago, not worth much just handy to keep as a little memory box is the only thing we use it for these days.


My case for a new camera was highlighted when all the snapshots of my daughter's recent 18th birthday all came out blurred and not very good. In my day it would be called "Camera Shake" and indeed that's what it is. The camera has an anti shake device built in but it seems like it's stopped working, hence the out of focus portraits!


I toddled off down to the market and called into our local camera shop, armed only with the limited knowledge I have of pixels, megabytes and digital terminology. Still, better I go than hubby because he doesn't understand cameras at all. I was faced with literally hundreds of cameras in every colour, size and price. I stood quite gormless with my finger touching my lip studying the different makes and accessories.


"Can I help you madam?" This man appeared from nowhere and gave me quite a flinching shock.


"I'm looking for a new camera, one which will do all the things we want it to." There that should be enough information I thought!


"Well!" said the man. "How many pixels, what features do you want, how much do you want to pay -- what exactly do you want it for?"


Yikes! I never thought there was that much to it. Gone have the days when you went into a camera shop, chose the body and then the lens to suit the occasion. Here I'm being offered all singing and dancing!


"Err! holidays, snapshots, well Y'know that sort of thing!"


"Ah, so it's for family shots and travelling!" Well that's what I said wasn't it?


He reached for a little black camera with "Special Offer" written underneath. He placed it on the counter and told me to photograph him.


"Look at the back of the camera not through the window!" he said as I picked it up. What did he take me for, I'm not that ancient. I'm surprised that he didn't ask where my black sheet and tripod was and if I needed a light to ignite my flash.


I smiled and raised my arms to take the picture. I framed his face but couldn't resist the temptation since he obviously thought I was a stupid woman, to cut the top of his head off! I handed it back and he pressed a button to retrieve the photo.


"Oh!, not quite in the middle but never mind, you understand how it works"


I giggled to myself before he replaced it on the shelf. I quite liked the feel of the camera and I admit it was good quality. The price was a little high, just slightly more than I was willing to pay but I said I would think about it and left the shop.


I went to the cheese stall next -- how fitting, "Say cheese!" I bought a huge slab of Lancashire cheese, my family's favourite! The cheese stall holder knows me quite well and asked if I'd been up to any mischief lately?


"Who me? --- No! good girl am I, now wrap me up that cheese."


Back home to a roaring fire, cup of coffee and just enough time to write this before picking my daughter up from college. Typical Tuesday!


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