The day off was unplanned, but welcome. Once I knew it was going to happen, I made lots of plans, the principal one amongst them involving two of my most favourite things: my Mavic and a lighthouse. Ka, as they so rightly put it, boom.

What I actually ended up doing instead was standing in a large warehouse building in Stikland as the temperature approached 40ºC.
Things had obviously gone badly wrong with the plan. My Mavic was 32km away and the nearest lighthouse was (I’m guessing, anyway) at Woodbridge Island – dangerously close to (Uns)Table View.

The warehouse in question was the Police Vehicle Clearance Centre, somewhere I needed to be because we had a vehicle that required clearance by the police. Bureaucracy and red tape never go smoothly, are often frustrating, and are generally a whole lot less enjoyable than flying your Mavic around a lighthouse, and so it proved today.

Still, needs must, and as long as I didn’t think too hard about where I could have been and what I could have been doing, the weeping was kept to a minimum. And there were more positives, because with that mammoth task out of the way, I could move on to other massively important things, like buying some velcro and taking that crappy pedestal fan back to Builders Whorehouse.

These are the bits that Casey Neistat never shares. He buys velcro too. He stands in queues to get forms stamped (although admittedly probably not in Stikland). He just never tells you about it.
Honesty, ne? Appreciate it.

Now though, with the sea breeze blowing just ever so slightly too hard for my videography requirements, I am home, and while I should be working on some writing, I’m eating a mango, drinking a damn fine Bloody Mary and blogging.

It’s strange how these things work out, hey?

The lighthouse and the Mavic will be available another day.
Another day soon, I hope.

Ok. Photos.

It occurred to me that I could get seriously bogged down in photo and video editing. Especially that latter, since I have no experience in that (although I have taken advice from several Mavic Facebook groups and downloaded this free package). Great for beginners, but supremely powerful, apparently.

But enough of that – I’m getting seriously bogged down in telling you what I think I’ll get seriously bogged down in. Meta distraction.

The upshot is that I uploaded the photos from the weekend onto Flickr. Bear in mind that I’m still learning (and that there was Sport Mode to play with), so they’re no masterpieces. But when I look back at my original efforts with a DSLR and stuff like that, I can see how I have learned and improved, so hopefully this will follow the same pattern.

So – here they are. Be kind, be gentle. And please marvel at the gorgeous Cape Agulhas coastline, which really doesn’t need a fancy drone or a decent photographer to be stunning.

The videos? They – as I eluded to earlier – are going to take a bit longer. However, I have already applied to mobygratis.com for some accompanying chilled electronica, so that’s a start, right?

Droning on…

Saturday was rather windy, but Sunday dawned so calm that the only limiting factor was battery life. I soon got a rotation system going: one in use, one cooling, one charging and I flew for literally hours.

There are lots of photos – and even a few videos – but they need some editing (flying coming along nicely, camerawork not so much just yet) and I’m not in an edity mood this evening. Anyway, this was chiefly about continuing up the steep learning curve and having a bit of fun in the wide open spaces.

Actually, I was going to try some serious cinematography, but I thought I’d give Sport Mode a go first. 72kph and 5000 metres later, the whole shooting videos thing seemed a better thing to do another day, because there was some serious laws of physics and engineering which needed testing.

Thresholds and limits pushed, I eventually, reluctantly, parked up for the day. But every bit of promise was realised – this is what I got it for – and I can’t wait to play some more.

Mavic to Agulhas

It’s the weekend you’ve I’ve all been waiting for!

This weekend, I get to take the Mavic down to Cape Agulhas and fly around open fynbos, open beaches and other… open stuff.

When I first thought about buying a drone (I know, I know), it was with this in mind. Flying around urban Cape Town is fun, but I’m hoping that there will be nothing like the fresh air and the big skies of the Southernmost Tip of Africa.*

And my 3D printing contact has even come through with some superb battery covers and joystick supports. It’s all coming together so nicely.I are rather excited.
Photos and maybe even some video to follow.

Have a special weekend.


* note that you are not actually allowed to fly at the Southernmost Tip of Africa.

I’ve been saying…

I love it when a plan comes together …when two recent 6000 miles… blog posts are linked by some external force or means.

I’ve been talking a lot about the local water restrictions (because it is big, big news here) and yesterday, I mentioned how people hate “drones” because they think that they are spying on them.

Guess what, readers – today, there was this on the Cape Talk website:

The City says about 20 000 residents are guilty of excessive water consumption.

It was revealed on Friday that the largest water consumers include the green belt of Newlands and Constantia as well as neighbouring suburbs Athlone, Newfields, Rylands and Lansdowne.In the northern suburbs, more big consumers are to be found in Kraaifontein, while further afield verdant Somerset West is another water-guzzling area.

Yeah, “water-guzzling”, “verdant” Somerset West. Sort yourself out.

The City says they will be working with residents to reduce usage before taking harsher measures.
Limberg says they will begin introducing new technology such as drones.


See what I mean?