Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Paparazzi

Those carry-on baggage x-ray machines at the airport used to bring out the deviant in me.  Back in the day when we all used film cameras, film was expensive, my vacation photos were priceless, and there was no way I was going to trust those signs posted at the security checkpoints that said, “Our x-ray scanners are harmless to film.”  Especially at some rinky-dink little island airport in the Caribbean.  What did they care if, after you were at home 2000 miles away, you cursed them and their machine for fogging your film?  So I would hide my shot rolls of film in my pockets, bra, and shoes (this was before the shoe-bomber) and walk through the metal detector, hoping not to set it off.  Or if I had too many rolls to hide on my body, I’d surrender my Ziploc bag of 15 canisters of film to the security agent and request a hand inspection, which usually elicited a very irritated glare from him or her and the painful, slow, systematic removal, one by one, of every roll from its can, inspected, and then capped once again.  You could almost read the sarcasm in their eyes:  “Gee, I hope you’re not going to be late for your flight now.”

But today, with digital cameras, no more deviance is required!  Your precious vacation photos can’t be damaged by the airport x-ray machine because film is obsolete!  You can copy your photos to a memory stick and pack it in your checked baggage, or you can back up your digital files to an online service from anywhere in the world!  What a relief to never again fear the loss of your travel memories.  This is good.

It is also good that the cost of digital cameras has significantly decreased since they were introduced and it is now affordable to buy even your youngest child an easy to use digicam for under $35 to bring along on a trip.  Kids learn to take pictures now without parents having to pay for the processing of a 24-exposure roll of film where 23 of the prints are out of focus.

So now all four of us have a camera when we go to Europe.  But wait.  Did I say this was good?  All four of us taking pictures of the Eiffel Tower from every angle.  Every angle during the day.  And every angle when it’s lit up at night.  On our last trip we came home with over 3000 pictures!  Yeah, you read that right.  Wanna' come over and see my vacation photos sometime?

1 comment:

  1. I can't wait to see all 3000 of your pictures! I took 1600 with only ONE camera!! :)
    I remember the days that I would hand my film--dozens of rolls in a lunch bag--to the security person at the airport.
    No pictures are still my most treasured possessions!


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