I’m betting that you, like me, have been to plenty of cool places where your eyes could adjust to a dark space but getting a picture in the poorly-lit space was nigh-on-impossible. A flash in many cases will create a harsh effect and (if you shouldn’t be taking pictures) may draw unwanted attention (shhh!). If, however, you carry one of the new, powerful flashlights you can get some great shots.
When Paula and I were in Salzburg we visited the catacombs at St. Peter’s and came across this wonderful altar in a cave that dates back to medieval times. The room was quite dark with a bit of lighting behind the items of interest. Fortunately we now carry a great flashlight given to us by Phillip, Paula was able to light the center of the altar while I snapped a couple pictures.
The flashlight was also helpful for examining the faded paintings on the walls (and before you get on us about deteriorating the paintings… Paula has a masters in archival studies, we were sure to not do any damage. :)). While traveling we’ve used the handy light to look into shadowy nooks, light up hidden signs and generally find our way in the dark. At first Paula made fun of me for my geeky obsession with carrying the new toy, but she soon came to appreciate the added light-on-demand.
There are a whole mess of HI (high intensity) flashlights out there, but I’m quite smitten with the unit Phillip gave us, the SureFire G2. It’s carry-on friendly (no complaints from security yet) and despite being very small and light it packs quite a punch – the thing puts out so much power that you can burn yourself if you leave it on too long!