Went to the caverns today. Cameras, including flashes, allowed. Bags and backpacks, not allowed. I wore my cargo pants and my jacket with the inner pockets so I could store all my camera gear like a total geek. *
There are side benefits to photography obsessions. The last time we went in the caverns, it was 52 degrees inside. Actually, it’s always 52 degrees inside. Right before you get to the burning molten lava center of the earth, it’s a cool 52 degrees. The tour did not include the burning molten lava center of the earth.
Anyway, last time we went to these caverns it was 52 degrees and I felt chilly.
But not this time. This time, it was 52 degrees, but I was so focused on pictures, that I didn’t even notice. Same thing when I went on the last Photo Walk in Gettysburg and it was 145 degrees. Barely noticed.
I started with my jacket tied around my waist, and never even bothered to put it on.
And it’s a good thing the jacket was tied around my waist, because the weight of all the gear in my pockets kept making my pants fall down.
Managed to blind the tour with my flash only 3 times, got the ends of my jacket covered in mud from crouching on the floor of the caverns, and held up the tour only once while the tour guide waited for me to get a shot of a drop of water. In fact, the tour guide even held his flashlight on the drop of water, so I could get the shot. What a great tour guide!
Turns out, he told me after the tour, he’s a professional photographer and does the tours on the side. He gave me his Facebook page to look at. Good thing I was carrying my notebook and pen that Gerhard gave me in those cargo pants so I could write down his info.
And Lucky Him. He gets to take his tripod and gear into the caverns after the tourists go home and shoot pictures to his heart’s content. If I want to go after hours, it’ll cost me $100 an hour. (I asked.)
We love going to caverns. This is our third time at these caverns which is why I was content to take so many pictures and completely ignore the tour guide. We went with Nephew13 this time. He didn’t want to go at first, but once we were there, he loved it. People usually react that way. A sense of reverence comes over you in the caverns.
Oh, pshaw. Nevermind about the reverence. I’m remembering the last time I went to Luray caverns with Darling Husband and Jo-Ann. The two of them had been stuck in the car too long getting there. I should have let them play on the playground before we went in the caverns. They kept cracking jokes throughout the whole tour and getting the giggles. They should have known how to behave. Darling Husband was in his thirties, for crying out loud!
I had to pretend I didn’t know them.
* filter, lens cap, rag (for drips from caverns), another rag (to clean lens), lens spray (in case cavern water with all those minerals dripped on the lens) 5 batteries (1 for camera, 4 for flash), mini tripod, flash, remote control, flashlight, notepad, pen, tissue (to use as softbox, but completely forget about it. Was a little skeptical it would work anyway). Plus keys and lipstick and sunglasses. No wonder my pants were falling down.