A small friend

Rollei Retro 400S, Zenit 11, Helios-44M-4 58mm 1:2, f/2, 1/500 s
Monza Park
November 2017

The Monza Park, one of the major European historical parks and the largest one surrounded by walls, was built at the beginning of the 19th century as an extension of the Royal Gardens. It houses the Monza Eni Circuit and various animal and plant species. The red squirrel stands out in the wild fauna, these animals are endless busy and they are currying favour with people, waiting for nuts.

That Saturday morning in November I was there for an educational trip with the photography group, not particularly stimulating, indeed, I’ve been distracted by a couple of squirrels on the hill above. Usually I meet commandos of photographers dressed as soldiers — with zooms that look like cannons — to shoot these little ones from 15 meters at 9 FPS. I had with me the old Soviet Zenit-11 with a prime lens and the last of the 36-exposure film, making a virtue out of necessity I have sought a more intimate dimension and approached in silence. I’ve decided the exposure without looking at lightmeter and focusing manually at full aperture caught the moment before this little friend ran away.

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