Weekly Photo Challenge: Merge

Merge had me stumped for weeks – all I could think of was traffic lanes merging and my particular hate for the nanny-state merge lights on motorway on-ramps – are people really too dumb to figure it out for themselves? – but this challenge came through only a couple of days AFTER I got home from a recent work visit to Auckland where such silliness abounds…

Then…when we were exploring our property with the dogs over the weekend – been here eight years and still not even close to exploring it all – we stumbled a native tree (a couple of metres thick) that had collapsed over a small stream, creating this massive bridge a dozen or so feet above the trickle of water. We were amazed at how well it merged into the surrounding bush until we were right on top of it – didn’t have a camera with us, then it started to rain…

Finally I came back to this image, my first instinct, the Shuttle Enterprise where science fiction met science fact – only nine years after NCC-1701 first flashed across grainy black and white TV screens we were naming our first true spaceship after her…

Footnote: I first heard of the Star Trek: New Voyages project in early 2007. Carmen and I had stopped at Bosco’s Cafe in Te Kuiti (northern end opposite the Teak shop and before the Shell station and New World heading north) after another weekend working on Hell’s Holiday Home at Te Waitere on the West Coast, on the southern edge of Kawhia Harbour. The December 2006 issue of Wired carried an article on a group of Trek fans who had accumulated a few props and started to film their own Original Series episodes (kicking off their own Season 4) in a  barn. Bit by bit, they garnered more support and more cash including a bunch of unofficial support and assistance from Paramount Pictures. Working in the US later in 2007, I managed to download the two or three episode then available (couldn’t download at home – over the dial-up connection we had then, I’d still be waiting on it now) but never quite got round to getting them onto DVD and watching them.

It was only when reading a thread on developing Star Trek paper models that I stumbled across the link again and downloaded the seven available episodes – I think that the production team is aiming on one a year which is pretty good for a backyard effort – and worked out how to use MS Movie Maker to stitch the 4-5 files for each episode together and then convert this WMV file to an MK4 for the WD TV player in the lounge using Handbrake.

So last night – finally – I got to dim the lights and watch the first couple of episodes: Kirk is still going through his B-grade scifi stage so he sat up the front by the TV and watched as well. In Harm’s Way, episode 2, was, we thought, pretty damn good and at least to the standard of the original series. I understand that production and acting values get better as the series progresses so we’re off to check out another couple of episodes now…

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