Adventures of a father and a photographer. Tales about the mystery and excitement of family travel.

perjantai 17. elokuuta 2018

Reindeer Flying Low

I remember a cartoon from the 90's about a clever animal helping Santa Claus and his elves with very serious problems related to Christmas somehow. The animal was called Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and the film was of course based on the popular Christmas song. Unfortunately I have say, if Santa would have to rely on the reindeer when he had any kind of problems, he would be very disappointed. Because - you'll hate me for saying this - I don't think the reindeer was present when intelligence was installed to the animal brain.

How can I say a thing like that? Reindeer is the most adorable animal and they help Santa deliver all the presents during Christmas time! As a Finn, a resident of Santa's home country, I should know better.

But, I know this from personal experience, reindeer seems to be one of the most stupid animals on Earth. Let me explain.

In Finland, the reindeer live up north, in Lapland. They wander in herds there, free, without shepherds. Somehow, the owners can gather them in one place when they want to. But most of the time, the animals can walk about free, anywhere they want. That's why there are big signs warning about wandering reindeer when you head to Lapland.

There's quite a lot of space for the reindeer to wander in Lapland. The distances between towns and villages are long and the roads between them are very straight. And people from the Southern Finland, and other countries too, love to come there to admire the harsh beauty of the nature and wilderness with their cars.

You may have guessed, that's just what I did with my family. Now, when the roads are straight, totally empty and the nearest police patrol is 500 kilometers away settling a pub incident, a certain thought might come to your head. Now that the rest of the family is sleeping, what if, what if you just tried out your family car. Is the number on the speedometer just a marketing trick or does this chitty-chitty-bang-bang really go that fast?

I'm most certainly not encouraging anybody to drive over the speed limit, but circumstances like that might make you feel like Jeremy Clarkson on Top Gear when he's driving the latest McLaren model. I'm not saying I did that, but it might happen that you push the pedal a bit closer to the metal and make the old seven-seater go faster than it was ever supposed to. And just when you're getting the Clarkson grin on your face, all of a sudden from the bushes, three reindeer walk very slowly into the middle of the road.

The reindeer seem to be on their summer vacation because they are most definitely not flying. They are slouching along the road so wide you can't possibly overtake them. You have to come back from the wonderful world of sports cars and slow down until you almost stop. Then, very slowly you pass by the animals who seem to ignore you totally.

You'd think that animals who fly through the night sky on the light speed would know that it's not very wise to spend time on the roads where big cars can go at very high speed. Oh no, the reindeer do this kind of stunts all the time and you really have to keep an eye on them when driving in Lapland.

Canon EF 50mm f1.8 II

Like with many other Canon shooters, this lens was my first pancake. Despite of it's plastic construction and the terrible motor noise, it was a major improvement to the cheap zoom lenses I had. The image quality is great for the price and you can do wonders with the f1.8. The lens was replaced by the Canon 40mm STM lens in my camera bag, but every once in a while I blow the dust from the old war horse and take it for a spin. Surprisingly enough, it's a pretty decent portrait lens on my crop sensor EOS.

You can read more about the lens here.

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