It was drizzling outside as we sat chomping at our whoopers inside Burger King. We’re contemplating if we should proceed to One Fullerton for the fireworks display. The weather was pretty bad but I would hate to leave without getting a shot after lugging my gear around.
We decided to give it a shot. Seems like the sky’s clearing. At around 7.30 each of us found a spot we liked and started to setup our gear. I parked myself at a 45 degree angle behind the Merlion. My tripod was up in a jiffy and I setup my camera on the tripod and adjusted for a composition that I like. I attached the cable release, tested a few shots and waited for the start of the fireworks show.
The wind was starting to pick up and I could feel a drizzle starting. I did what I could to cover my camera at the same time hoping that I got the position correct. If they launch the fireworks at the other direction everything will be for naught. The crowd was gathering in strength and the air was charged with anticipation.
The fireworks went off! I looked through the viewfinder and a sense of jubilation came over me. The composition was exactly what I had hoped for. I waited for the next round of fireworks to fire off and gently squeezed the cable release for 4 seconds.
To my absolute horror, instead of a postview of the shot, the 3 alphabets “ERR” was showing on the display. My mind just went blank. Batteries flat!!! What to do? Instinct kicked in.
The drill was the same but I’ve got only a window of minutes before the display end. Not a problem, I will have plenty of time left. The first finger on my right hand flicks the switch to the off position and my left hand reached for the release knob of the battery housing. With a light twist the battery housing pops out of while the right hand now reached for the spare batteries in my bag’s side compartment.
Sliding my left hand to the end of the battery housing, the first finger knocked the first battery out of the housing and with a firm knock against my thigh the rest of the batteries dropped out. At the same time, my right hand finds the spare battery case and thumbing the case open I feel the palm of my right hand fill up as the batteries dropped out of the case.
Loading the battery housing like a season soldier loading his M16 magazine, I cursed like a sailor silently under my breath. Last one loaded, I re-insert the battery housing, flicked the switch to the on position and I squeezed the cable release once again.
NOTHING… ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!! Somehow my spare batteries have gone dead as well! No lights, no sound, nothing, at this moment the camera was as useful to me as sand is to a person dying of thirst in the middle of a desert.
With resignation, I sat down with the rest of the crowd to watch the remainder of the show. Looking up, I pondered over how this could have happened.