Today was a vacation day. No cleaning, no cooking, no organizing, no studying, no work, no doing anything that HAS to be done. Our destination? Sausalito California, a quick 2o minute drive from our house. We found the spot above for some dawn shooting as we pulled into town. The weather was perfect even before the sun came over the horizon, and the clouds over the bay reflected beautiful golden and red color as the sun continued to rise, while fog slowly enveloped the San Francisco skyline:
The morning time is a good time to meet the locals, who are also out with their dogs (we brought Suki along), and is a great time to enjoy some peace in the town before the tourists start crowding the sidewalks from the late morning on.
I had the camera with me the entire time, of course, and took the opportunity to do more testing of my new Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 VC, checking out its bokeh quality as well as sharpness at its widest aperture. I ended up being quite pleased with both:
Here’s Suki being herself while we ate breakfast outdoors by the waterfront. Though she moves a lot, the sophisticated auto-focus in the D300s kept up with her erratic behavior, and the Tamron was up to the task as far as focusing speed. The above shot was taken at f/2.8, and I was pleased with the sharpness of the shot, even at a 1:1 magnification at her eyes.
As I mentioned, we ran into other furry friends as well:
We were especially excited when we met the following dog. Below is Kuroman, a black and tan Shiba Inu we met during our stroll. I just called him Kuro for short, which means “black” in Japanese. Born in Japan and bred into a champion show dog, Kuro was an absolutely stunning Shiba:
While Kuro has a black top coat, his undercoat, like Suki’s, is white. So stray white hairs are easily seen on his face, which is especially funny when he puts on his “serious” face. Despite his stern look, he is a goofy guy with a wonderful temperament, and Suki got a long well with him right away:
Kuroman’s owner actually just lost her red Shiba Inu, who only two weeks ago died of old age (16 years!). She was so excited about seeing Suki that she invited us over to her house nearby so Suki and Kuro could play, which they did, for nearly two hours!
With all that black fur, Kuro heats up much quicker than Suki. So after short bursts of play like you see above, he’d run for cover inside the house and relax:
Kuro is much more easy to photograph than Suki. When he relaxes, he REALLY relaxes, and he doesn’t mind the camera one bit. So I kept shooting funny portraits of his handsome face!
Suki wouldn’t let Kuro rest forever of course, and would soon start pestering him to wrestle! The dogs continued this way while we talked with the owner about the joys and hilarious memories involved in living with a Shiba Inu. When we parted ways, we were told that Suki is welcome whenever we want to bring her over to play with Kuro, which was nice, because that house was fabulous (it is Sausalito after all). I’m pretty sure her four-car garage is bigger than my entire house…check out the area where I pulled my car into her property:
After this we headed to Mill Valley and ate some local organic food, including some salted chocolate and Guinness (yes, Guinness, and it DOES taste like it too) gelato. I went back for a second cup of the salted chocolate…it was THAT good. There’s a lot more about this day that I really wanted to write about, but I’m absolutely exhausted….gotta get to bed. Maybe I’ll write more tomorrow. Good night!