Typhoon Soudelor – The Next Day

Typhoon Soudelor, the biggest tropical storm of 2015 so far smashed into Taiwan on Friday. Though at sea, it was classified as a category five storm, by the time it made landfall in Taiwan it was “downgraded” to category three. In the 12+ years I have been in Taiwan, this has been the hardest hit I can remember: I am very happy not to have experienced an actual category five storm.

Personally, we were fine, though we did go without power most of the day yesterday. Today, power was back up most of the day, but when it went back down for a time, we decided it was a good time to head to Bitan (five minutes away) to see how the river fared.

Not surprisingly, there was a lot of damage and a lot of debris. There always is after a big storm and this was certainly a big storm. Of greater interest to me in some ways, is how much has already been done in cleaning up and getting things back to normal. This post will show both the mess and how much has been done in much less than 24 hours. I do know that by next weekend, things will look as though nothing happened.

As an aside, although I know Bitan will be tidied up in very short order, some of the more isolated communities will not be so lucky. All day long, helicopters were flying, bringing supplies to areas that were completely cut off because of the storm.

Sweatin’ to the Oldies

There was a time when I used to quite regularly take macro photos of insects and other creepy crawly things. For whatever reason, I haven’t done that much in the past few years. On Thursday, I went back to it though, at an old spot near my home. Why I chose to revive the tradition when Taipei’s temperatures and humidity are nearing their most intense is an awfully good question. Even though I went relatively early in the morning, I was pouring sweat before I took my first shot and by the time I finished, a little more than an hour later, not only was I covered in sweat, but my clothes were totally saturated.

As compared to the last time I was in this location, the insects at hand seemed to be of the smaller species. Previously, I had found big butterflies, grasshoppers, katydids and spiders in this little field. This time, almost everything I shot seemed to strain the limits of my macro lens.

Ten From ’14

At the end of the year, many folks like to do a review and choose their 10 best; be it movies, songs, books etc. I’ll join in on the fun, though I wouldn’t call these my 10 best. More like 10 that caught my eye in quick review. Some I don’t even know why I like, but I like them nonetheless. No particular theme; I will just show them in chronological order.

On March 3oth, hundreds of thousands showed up to voice their displeasure at the Cross Strait Service and Trade Agreement.

On March 3oth, hundreds of thousands showed up to voice their displeasure at the Cross Strait Service and Trade Agreement.

Security from the ongoiong Cross Strait Service and Trade Agreement protests.

Security from the ongoiong Cross Strait Service and Trade Agreement protests.

Chess players; always a favorite subject of mine.

Chess players; always a favorite subject of mine.

Security on Taipei's MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) system.

Security on Taipei’s MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) system.

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New Year, New Stuff

For the first new photos of the new year, I am going with something a little out of the ordinary for me. On Sunday, I tagged along with a local photo group to an abandoned apartment complex. Also joining us were Melody, Tany and Elin, who would be our models for the day. Although I shoot a lot of photos of people, working with actual models is something I don’t do a lot. It was a cool location and the people were great, making for a very fun afternoon. Here are some of the photos.

Special thanks, of course to Melody, Tany and Elin; it was great to meet you and to work with you to make the photos.