1983. Annie closes on Broadway after 2,377 shows. Gandhi wins Best Picture as Return of the Jedi picks up steam. Pioneer 10 becomes the first man-made object to leave the solar system. The De Lorean Motor Company ceases production, and the McNugget is introduced. I am three years old and love Ernie. Konica also produces a charming little pocket rangefinder with auto focus, shutter, and film winding, all for the low, low price of 47,800 yen.
For some time now, I have wanted a lightweight “junk” camera that I can always have with me and throw in any number of bags. The A-1 is too versatile and valuable a piece of equipment to have jostled around in my backpack all the time. The 70-210mm zoom lens is also intimidating to a lot of people.
Anyway, I didn’t want to put a lot of money into said camera because that would defeat the purpose. So I’ve been coming flea markets and Akihabara back alleys for a couple of months. I finally found what I was looking for last weekend while helping out the Nihon Furosato Food Festival. I bought shiny, black, brick from a kindly, well-traveled old man who spoke way too much like a used car salesman. But the camera was impeccably well kept, spotless and hardly a scratch on it– inconceivable for a 25 year old consumer shoot-and-forget camera.
Though I have had a decent array of camera bodies for a while, this marks the first time I’ve ever had film bodies at the same time. I realized today how nice this was when shooting the annual hanami raves in Yoyogi park this afternoon. The weather was a real drag, frigid, raining, and dark. But having 1600 Natura pushed to 3200 in the A-1 and 400 Presto in the Konica, I felt confident that I could handle any number of shots without feeling the pressure to finish a roll for switching stock.
For the first time in a long time I have a considerable scan backlog now, so once I get through my slides I’ll make an album in the Gallery dedicated to Konnie. 🙂