A series of posts about my participation in the 24 Hour Project on 7 April 2018.
Hour 18: 10.00 pm to 11.00 pm
I was still in town. I’d walked past Pigeon Whole after I took the photo of phone lady and thought the bakers working would also be a good photo idea. I’d seen a few of those in the instagram feed and decided to give it a go.
I only needed one more photo for to complete the night and I needed to wait at least another hour for that. My idea was to take a photo in the bus on the way home. (Despite my love of walking I wasn’t prepared to walk 10km back home at midnight.) The bus left town at 11.10, so my plan was to go back down to Salamanca, see if there were any final opportunities for photos of people out at night that might be better than the bakery one then head up to the bus route and keep walking until I got to a bus stop close to the time the bus would be coming past.
Salamanca was really noisy, which was incredibly jarring to me, as I’d been in my own head and silent for most of the day. Such a contrast to how quiet it had been in town. I didn’t want to stay, so I took a random crowd shot and a shot of a busker, who had turned his head away at exactly the wrong moment, and left.
Groups of people dressed up to go out walked past me and I remembered the days I’d go out at 10.30 pm rather than be heading home as I was now.
I finally gave into my sugar craving and stopped for ice cream, which I absolutely did not need, but appreciated very much.
Hour 19: 11.00 pm to 12.00 am
Into the last hour and all I had to do was not miss the bus. You can never be too sure about the bus timetable and have to treat the arrival times at stops with a degree of flexibility. Early is unlikely, but it has happened and the risk of walking to the next stop rather than standing around to wait is that you miscalculate the time it will take to get to the next stop and the bus comes sailing past you as you’re walking. I opted for the cautious approach, the bus was on time and I got my final photo.
I had survived!
My step tally for the day: 65,055, which I think is about 40 km based on my stride length. It was a good day, and my head was full of thoughts and ideas which I now have to sit down and process.
I really enjoyed the day and loved spending the time by myself, observing and documenting the city around me with no expectations of having to do anything or be anywhere (other than the school fair). I’m very keen to do it again next year and have started putting together a list of things to do and not do if I do participate again.
I think if I do this again and commit to the full 24 hours I might need a friend to keep me company, at least for a while. The organisers recommend doing it with friends, but I really enjoyed the freedom of being by myself, going where I wanted to and being able to be in my head as much as I wanted to be. I found the sitting, reflecting and writing to be valuable parts of the day. And necessary. I suspect if I did this with someone else for all or part of it, it would need to be someone who’s happy to not talk for long periods.
I think it would be a different experience doing it with someone else. It could possibly give me new insights and perspectives. Or it could stop me thinking as much, and that might not be such a bad thing every now and then. And being with someone else might make me feel less awkward about taking photos in the street because they’d be doing it too.
If I did the full 24 hours, I think the hours from midnight to about 5 or 6 am would be the hardest, as I’d be starting out when most people had already been out for a while on a Friday night. That might be a good time to team up with someone.
I reckon I’d need more than one phone charger as mine ran out of power by about 8.30pm, even after having the phone on airplane mode a lot of the afternoon and evening so it didn’t use as much battery. It would have been good to have had a base, like a friend’s (or a sister’s . . . hint hint) place close to town to be able to hang out at to recharge the phone (and even take a quick nap), get more water and some snacks.
I thought I’d have time to sit around and read, so I took a book with me. I didn’t. Book is not needed. Ditch the book. It just makes your backpack heavier. Definitely take a notebook though, especially if your phone battery runs out quickly like mine does. I also didn’t need headphones/earbuds. I do like listening to music, but I find it disconnects me from where I am, which is good in some situations, but I think it would have distracted me from what I was there to do. I didn’t listen to any music at all and didn’t feel the need to. It also would have drained my phone battery faster so it’s a good thing I didn’t.
One thing I regret not taking was sunscreen or a hat. I burn very easily and usually don’t go out in the middle of the day without a hat. It didn’t even occur to me at 5am that the sun would be up in a few hours and I’d be out wandering around in it all day. Take a hat!
I also think it would be good next time to jump on a bus and get out of the city for a few hours during the day and capture some of the suburban areas.
So that was my 24 minus five hours in Hobart. It’s now a week later and hard to believe this time last week I was into hour seven of the project. It’s given me a lot to think about and I’ve been thinking and writing a lot since I finished. I’m not sure what to do with all the thoughts so I’m letting them circulate in my head and on paper and form some conclusions on their own.