Ben's Photo Blog

Photos from my various adventures

Posts Tagged ‘zoo’


Posted by Ben on March 11, 2010

Another zoo shot.  This one is a tiny little hummingbird from the Sonora desert exhibit.  I had the camera shooting continuously for a good thirty seconds hoping to get it in flight, but no luck there.  I love the bright pink colors around its neck in this shot.

I spoke briefly last time about the unknowns in my life at the moment.  Well…I’ve got another one to toss onto that pile for a few days: my plans for the summer.  I was ecstatic last week to find out that I had been accepted to mathematics summer internship with the National Security Agency.  I mean, I thought the interviews had gone well, but I didn’t think my chances of getting into a program that only takes twelve students each summer were very good.  At that point I thought I was set for the summer.  I wasn’t really excited about the Lockheed internship I interviewed for (which is good since I didn’t end up getting that one).  However, I found out earlier tonight that I was accepted to the mathematics REU at Oregon State University for this summer.  I knew going into this that that was a highly competitive and selective program.  In fact, I had pretty much been waiting for the last few weeks for an email from them politely informing me that I had not been selected.

So, now I find myself forced to choose between two very attractive programs.  On the one hand is the NSA.  First, I would be making considerably more money through this program.  I would also be much closer to home (Baltimore, Maryland vs Corvallis, Oregon).  It would also give me a glimpse into what a mathematics major might actually do in the real world.  On the other hand, the REU program would give me a better glimpse into what math grad school would be like.  I would basically be working on a research project for the majority of the summer there.  From what I’ve heard, it is also a very nice thing to be able to include on a grad school application.  This program is also a month shorter than the NSA one, giving me a little bit of a summer break to enjoy.  It is also located in what seems like a beautiful part of the country (though I’ve never actually been there before).  A downside to this is that I’d be on the other side of the country from most of my friends.

Anyway, I’ve got a lot to think about for this one…


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Posted by Ben on March 9, 2010

This is another picture from our day at the zoo this past weekend.  I think this is definitely one of the best animal shots that I ended up with.  I was really surprised to see how clear this one turned out when I got home and transferred all of the pictures back to the computer.  This picture was taken through a fairly thick glass wall that went around the front of the bobcat exhibit.  You can see a little bit of reflection in the top right corner, but it’s not that noticeable unless you are specifically looking for it.  Maybe I shouldn’t have said anything…

Spring break is going well so far.  It has been very relaxing to be home and away from most of the school work that I normally have to deal with.  There are always things and people that I miss while I’m home, and they always seem to change each time I come back.  Sometimes it doesn’t set in until a few weeks into the break, but this time it only took a few days.  I guess maybe it has to do with how the semester has been going for me.  Looking back at this one, things have been going well for the most part.  There are very few things that I can complain about, and most of them are my own fault anyway.  There are still a good number of unknowns in my life at the moment, weighing down my mind late at night, but I’m hoping to clear some of those up once I get back next week, and for once I have a feeling that things might go my way.


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Getting Away

Posted by Ben on March 8, 2010

Spring break is finally here!  I got up pretty early on Saturday morning, packed and headed out of Blacksburg for about a week.  Not being in a rush, I took a much more scenic way back home, though it ended up only taking about 15 minutes longer than usual.  It’s nice to get off of the highway and drive through the mountains and all of the small towns along the way.  The weather was beautiful as well, and the day was the warmest in recent memory.

We had another beautiful day here in NC yesterday and my parents and I went to the zoo down in Asheboro.  We had a really good time, and I ended up with a couple of really nice pictures, some of which will end up here I’m sure.

This one was taken near the end of the day at the elephant exhibit.  I really like the way the colors turned out in this shot.  I was using my polarizing filter since it was so bright, and it definitely helped with the nice blue of the sky.  I also like the orangish-yellow look to the rocks in the pond.  The elephant in the distance is a nice addition to the shot.  I wish it had been a little closer, because when I zoomed in on it, I lost the pond and the sky from the picture.


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