Photographs from Roma and the Vatican. This was the first outing of the “travel kit”: a Minolta XD-7, Vivitar Series 1 28-70mm, Minolta 50mm f1.7 MD, Vivitar Series 1 70-210 f3.5, Manfrotto Modo Monopod and a Crumpler PrettyBoy XL bag.

Lessons were learnt on this trip. First off – always check your ISO before you start shooting. On the switch back from Tri-X (for the indoor shots at the Vatican) to Fuji ACROS, I completely forgot to reset the ISO back to 100 on the lightmeter. Alas, I now have several sheets of overblown film. On the flip side, it does give us an excuse to visit again…

The Modo Monopod also died a death over this holiday. I bought it specifically for this trip because I wanted a lightweight low cost monopod to stick a light body and lens on the top. On the second day, the foot fell off at St Peters, and the day after the lower half of the shaft shattered completely. While I appreciate the Modo kit is not designed for pro use, nor to last forever, for it to self-destruct after a few days of use is completely unacceptable. The monopod is currently with Manfrotto awaiting replacement (and has been for a while).

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