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International Rally, Day Four, Part I

Everyone is starting to hit the wall now… and yesterday was only the first official rally day! The problem with these rallies is that if you try to see everyone and do everything you want, you’ll wear yourself out. I’ve alluded to this problem before. I usually come out of one of these things needing a vacation.

The schedule is brutal, albeit self-imposed. We’re all like a bunch of 5-year-olds who don’t want to go to bed because we might miss something. So we get up early and immediately start socializing, run around all day attending seminars, meeting friends, attending happy hours, catching up on gossip, eating out, buying stuff, and then of course eating ice cream. By the end of the day, we’re all beat.

I had warned Rich C about this before he came, and last night we were commiserating on it. He ended up doing a bunch of free consulting to people with computer problems, and at one point his voice started to go. I had impromptu meetings with at least half a dozen people, and ended up missing a couple of events entirely because my schedule was completely whacked. Then I had to get back to the computer to respond to email and put up the blog. At 9:30 pm I was hiding in Rich’s trailer trying to unwind with one of his recorded episodes of “Futurama” but there was no escape: people kept dropping by to chat.

Salem night shot.jpg

Eleanor and Emma were similarly tired. I hardly saw them all day, since they kids’ program kept them busy until nearly 3 pm, and then we split up again later in the afternoon. Just when I was dragging myself, Eleanor, and Emma back to our trailer at 10 pm for bed, I spotted a beautiful crescent moon rising over the Airstreams. So I grabbed Rich C’s tripod again and took a few pictures. The moon didn’t come out well, but I did get some halfway decent night shots. We finally got to bed around 11 … and this morning it begins again.

Today will be busier! Rich C and his neighbor were asking if I was going to enter the photo contest, but I feel I should exclude myself. Being a semi-pro (since I shoot for the magazine all the time), I think I have a bit of an unfair advantage. I have shot probably over 10,000 photos of our Airstream and our adventures in the past nine months and kept over 4,000. As a result, I’ve got a few good ones and they sometimes appear in the magazine (such as the redwoods photos in the upcoming Summer 2006 issue, which you’ll see in July). I wouldn’t feel right entering photos that I shoot partially for professional purposes in this type of contest. But Rich C is off entering his photos right now, and I wish him luck!

Colin Hyde is on his way over right now. He and Steve Hingtgen of Vintage Trailer Supply flew in last night and are coming down from Portland. I’ll meet up with them later this morning.