I have a few things to finish up with my stay in Bangkok left. I decided to get the two day Siam tours hop on/off bus tour and start tomorrow with the historic and museum route. The idea is to ride the bus from the initial stop by a BTS Station to the Siam Museum and then hop off and walk from the Museum to a few temples and finish up at the National Museum after. I am going to only do two museums here but the ones I chose were not within easy distance to BTS or MRT stops and I refuse to ride the rip-off tuk tuk drivers. The other values to the tour over other ways of getting around are that you get to jump back on where you want and intersect the other tours and then take those through the shopping and central business district routes.
Since I bought the tickets for two days I will probably do the second day either Friday or Saturday and go back to the weekend market on Sunday since I really liked that market. Monday is my last full day here so will get some things done, clean up the airbnb condo a bit, pack up and be ready to leave earlier Tuesday morning since I have a flight to Siem Reap at 10am. I will probably leave by 7am so I get to the airport by 8am and can check in.
I’ve been using my new compact camera the Panasonic Lumix LX10 that I bought in George Town a lot and I really appreciate the form factor and the flexibility of being able to shoot in program mode or change to aperture priority. The camera has a nice set of features and I have been thinking a lot about the whole concept of travel camera and what is really needed to fill my use cases. I doubt I ever really needed the FujiFilm cameras even though I enjoyed using them but that lets me summarize some of my uses. See what you think for travel:
- Portability and size. I think the primary thing when traveling with only a 45L backpack and a daypack is how portable things are. This starts with things like my laptop and also includes the camera. The idea of carrying multiple lens or camera bodies seem to run counter to the goal. A travel camera should be pocketable in case you encounter rains.
- Flexibility of use. The camera you choose should not be limited to automatic or program modes. You should be able to shoot in manual or semi-automatic modes to liven up your creative juices and to have even more fun.
- Fun is another thing and perhaps should be the first thing on the list. Lets face it if you are not having fun with your choices your creativity is sure to be threatened. If the camera is not fun to use you probably will not use it long term.
- Accessibility. The camera should be imminently accessible. It should not be challenging to use. An example perhaps. The Lumix LX10 camera is small. If your hands are big this camera may be challenging to use. It is rather slippery or slick at times and even though it easily fits into one hand, when taking images one should cradle the camera in both hands. Accessibility may be important when you look at the other uses above and below this one.
- Film effects or simulations are important. Perhaps not so important if you shoot raw photos but I don’t do that. I don’t plan on sitting around for hours in a boring and complex piece of software to tweak curves or light or shadow. I don’t particularly care for how some photographers take an image and apply such a level of post production to it, its obviously been “photoshopped”.
When you roll all these up into one thing, you may have a bit of a definition of a travel camera. A small camera, flexible to use, that is fun and easily accessible with great film effects. It should be easily changed to Program or Auto modes by a dial and the film effects easily applied.
Another thing that perhaps you have not thought of but could in the future is shooting 4k video. Who knows if that will be a fun thing you want to do in Angkor Wat or Kuala Lumpur or Singapore? It could be. If this flexible and useful travel camera that is small and offers good JPEG images can have 4k video you may find another level of fun to emerge.
A final thing for me is reading many reviews of different cameras and seeing that a number of people subscribe to the idea of carrying multiple cameras. One DSLR and a compact camera. Different kits for different uses I imagine. I believe if you need that you will do it and it will fit your use case. I don’t need that. I don’t intend on selling images or being a professional or even avocational photographer that is in training for something else. Mainly put, I am in all this for fun and perhaps some learning. The images are meant to be able to share and record my journeys and vagabonds only. Friends ask sometimes if I went to place X or Y. I have google photo albums of the places. That is perhaps the final thing for me is the repository of the photos. Google Photos provides the best of organization for me and the cost is good. Namely free.
Siem Reap Things…
Its soon gonna be Siem Reap times. I cannot wait! I fly out next Tuesday and go back to the land of beautiful historic sites, wonderful food adventures, and cheap places to sit and have that well deserved smoothie after a day of adventuring. My goals for this trip to SR are not to go in a different direction each day and try to see what the city and surrounding area has to offer. I’ve done that already. Now the walking will of need change to be more of walking for the love of it and the camera comes along because of course it is a travel camera and I don’t need lots of room for it. It all works so well.
Having a month there means no rush to do things and get to places and I get to enjoy the restaurants, bars, cafes, and coffee shops I visited last time. I know though that soon the times in Cambodia will pass and I will be boarding the flight to Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam for 3 weeks there again. Ho Chi Minh City exploration is a wonder to me. Its probably one of the most fun cities to set out and explore and see. Eat and drink and wave at Vietnamese people and see the kids saying hello and smiling and waving as I go by. A wonder of places that I get to call home.
I love it!