I guess sometimes it takes a very understanding partner. OK so I did the driving but we’d driven from Exeter to Paris, had dropped my daughter off at the flat and, whilst partner was parlezing with the homme in the garage I had oiked one of the Nikons out of the boot and was mooching round the bike section of the car-park. To be honest in the interim I’d also had a spat with the driver avec le horn; it had been a long journey.

OK, enough already.

The Nikon’s had come on holiday; we were in the Saab estate, plenty of room, so I chucked the Peli in the back with a full set of Nikon gear. However in my mind I had thought about taking just the lesser D610 and a simple 50mm lens, we were after all in the land of Cartier-Bresson . Yes I have a Leica with probably one of the best 50mm lenses ever but it stayed at home – it’s a long story. The simple Nikon and the basic lens was to be my holiday exercise, less to lose on the Metro too.

I suppose if Bolt, Button or Sir Bradley were to tip up at a race and admit to not practicing there would be uproar. However one of the problems with photography is that whilst everything could be deemed to be practice, deliberately limiting oneself with a basic lens could risk missing that ‘big opportunity.’ But heavens, we were in Paris, already ahead of the game so let’s get real.

In the end the 50mm ƒ/1.8 did get some good outings but the 24-70mm ƒ/2.8 managed to sneak out too. The streets are full of opportunities and although not every day was to be a bike and car day I don’t like walking past an opportunity. The Champs-Élysées is full of neat car showrooms which offer a lot of opportunity. The French seem to have a fondness for the British style too, lots of cool British tackle on the streets.

As I said my partner is very understanding, by daughter too; progress can be slow but we all need a little exercise don’t we?

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