close encounters

My sleepy eyes found this intersection in Rome around 12:30ish am.

Almost immediately after I set up the tripod and lined up this shot, a bus pulled up and parked right in front of me. Literally 8 inches in front of my lens. I was quite startling actually, having a huge bus almost mow you and your precious camera gear down.

The bus doors open and out stomps the driver. No passengers are on the bus.

With cellphone in hand, speaking while gesticulating with his hands (as is the Italian way), he lights up a cigarette, glances at me, my camera, and the puzzled look on my face, pauses a second to size me up, then goes about his conversation, occasionally puffing on his lit cigarette between hand gestures… Apparently, I don’t register on his “give a crap” meter.

I’m standing there with a sort of, ‘is this really happening’ look on my face.

Then, finished with his smoke, he tosses away the cigarette butt, grabs the handrail and swings himself back into the bus. The doors swing shut and the bus kicks into gear, leaving me in a happy little cloud of black smoke as it rounds the corner.

I’m still standing there with the same puzzled look on my face.

Technical Mumbo Jumbo

– Nikon D3 – Nikkor 14-24 f/2.8 @ 14mm f/2.8 Iso: 100 / 5 Exposure Brackets (-2,-1,0,1,2)
HDR Photography Processing & Tone Mapping using Photomatix Pro
– Post Processing & Color Correction using Photoshop
– Enhanced detail with Nik Software Sharpener Pro
– Called it a night

Daily Banana – Crossing Guard

(move the slider to compare before and after)