My first camera was a present for my 10th birthday. It was red plastic with a fixed focus lens. It let me very bad pictures no one else wanted to look at for several years, until I received a much nicer Canon point & shoot in preparation for my first trip to Germany.
I’ve started scanning in pictures taken with that first camera, and while most are as blurry as I remember, there are some fun things here too.
This is the front yard of the duplex we lived in from 1990-1994. Across the street is Sabin Elementary School, where I attended the second half of fifth grade after we moved back from Richland.
This was taken in Sitka, AK. I think the overpass in the foreground is probably part of Halibut Point Road, the highway that connects the west side of Baranoff Island. I spent 3-5 weeks a year in Sitka from about ’88 to ’92, visiting my father and stepmother.
My brother attempts a self-portrait, on the same trip to Alaska. If he had a camera during this time it was a little plastic 110.
Tenakee Springs, also in SE Alaska, about two years after the pictures above. It’s a tiny fishing village with about 100 residents. The only way to get there is by boat, and the ferry dock doesn’t allow cars on or off. People walk, or bike, or use mopeds. You can’t go very far without needing a boat again, anyhow.
The general store seen here handles rentals for a few vacation houses across the street. They’re comfortable, but nothing fancy. Around the building to the right is the ferry dock.
This is the bathhouse. The island doesn’t have a full sewage system or room for everyone to install a septic tank, but it does have natural hot springs, so people use the communal bathhouse to clean up. There are men’s and women’s hours posted, and to bathe you go in, undress in the outer room, get a pitcher of water and scrub off the dirt on the ring of benches outside the tub, then hop in for a soak after you’re clean.
I regret that I didn’t get a picture of the other part of the hygiene situation on the island: a pair of outhouses hanging over the ocean. At high tide, everything goes in the water, but at low tide it can be somewhat gross. While we were there, my brother scrawled a short poem about the wind tickling your ass on the inside wall of one of the outhouses. I recognized his handwriting a few hours later, told my stepmother, and she marched him down to the general store to apologize and get something to remove the marker. These days I wish I’d kept my mouth shut. It was a funny poem.
Now we move on another year or two to OMSI Tidepool Camp on the Oregon coast. This picture is from the second year I went to the camp.
There must have been something interesting in the pool. Rocks like this are extremely slippery, so you spend a lot of time trying not to fall over.
The Peter Iredale, one of the icons of the Oregon Coast, second only to Haystack Rock.