Saturday, November 28, 2009

Tijuana en la lluvia

In an attempt to venture out and do something more adventurous we decided on a trip out of the country. This is not as big a deal as it sounds when you live 45 minutes from an international border.
So we woke up early, packed up some food and supplies and headed over to the trolley to catch the train to the Mexican border. While we waited for the train we noticed in was colder and windier today than it's ever been since we arrived in May.




After about an hour on the train, we left the station at San Ysidro and crossed over on the bridge...




And entered the turnstile. As you can see unlike crossing the border into most countries, not one Mexican official approached us or asked us what we planned to do in their country. I did see one or two nearby though, just for security.




Here I am after crossing the border.



Just inside the border we found a pretty cow.




...and a little stray puppy in the plaza (he's watching two other dogs get VERY acquainted just behind that bench.)






Looking at the fountain...



We stopped in esta tienda (a store) to buy some mexican sweets and found this amazing Mayan mural.



In no time we found El Museo De Cera de Tijuana (the wax museum).






Naomi with the wax man at the entrance



These are some Mexican Native people...



This guy is a Mexican Warrior.




Some Mexican heros...



Some people are just perfect for a wax portrait.



There was a spooky room with a wall of skulls like the catacombs.





This is one of the zombies inside.



This mural under the black light was really creepy!



As we left the museum it began to drizzle! By this I mean actual rain, the first we've experienced since leaving Bariloche! We would have been excited except that we packed sun block, not umbrellas. We stopped near the famous Tijuana arc and then headed to a restaurant to eat and see if the rain let up.




After practicing our Spanish in the restaurant for an hour, the rain just got worse, so we bit the bullet and headed for the border. Here are my intrepid travelers huddling under plastic as we wait in the massive line to enter into the USA.








For anyone curious about the latest requirements it seems you need a passport or a passport card which you swipe through a scanner as you get to the front of the line. Then they run your bags through an X-ray. Naomi asked me six times if we were at the airport now.

When we finally stumbled through the door of the condo we were pretty much adventured out and the girls settled under blankets and warmed up with some "Abuelita" (mexican hot chocolate). It's good and spicy!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Like New

Years ago I had a friend who always celebrated her birthday the same way. She went to the Catskill Game Farm (the small local zoo near where we were living) with her family. She'd been doing it since she was a little girl. Her birthday was in July and as she put it "It's hot and it's smelly, but we do it!".... Every year the same, I was in awe! I try never to celebrate my birthday the same way twice, and on our anniversary I insist on doing things or going places we'd never done before. Many people create traditions like this, though, but I just can't do it, it's not for me.



At the library here they offer a 10 day pass to the Children's Museum downtown. You place it on hold with your library card and then you wait in the queue. Last July I reserved the pass. As I watched my name inch up in the line, Mike pointed out we'd already been to that museum twice. I groaned inwardly, he was right, the most I'd want to go was once, if that. Over the months my name headed for the top of the list.... and then in October it stopped. Curious, I checked into it. It seems that every 18 months this museum shuts down and overhauls all the exhibits! Everything's new now and the pass came up with my name on Thanksgiving break!


This is the biggest new exhibit...The trojan horse!



The children can crawl around inside if they enter from the second floor.



Almost every exhibit has an overhaul or has been taken down and replaced with something different. We had a blast and we're heading back today!

The other good news is that this week "The Robin Falls Magazine" came out with the issue that includes a preview of "The People That Melt in The Rain". You can see it here .

"Happy Thanksgiving" to my readers from the USA!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Celebrating with bubbles

Phoebe turned 8, so Saturday was Phoebe's "Bubble Party".
We blew bubbles, made bubble wands and bubble prints, had a bubble gum guessing game....




...and, of course there was the bubble wrap dance floor!




We had pizza and drinks with bubbles (not champagne -just soda)







There was the usual opening of presents, all of which seemed huge and extravagant since the birthday parties in Argentina.








And the goodie bags of bubble jars and bubble gum.
Lots of fun! Too much left over bubble gum!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Fin

So today we started by working on the water up top.




Then we focused on cleaning up our drips with the wall paint. It's a sunbleached wall so adding white to the wall paint was key to matching the color.








So here it is ....We're Finished!!!



The "Dedication" is tomorrow morning, but today is Phoebe's birthday... Happy Birthday Phoebe!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Almost Done!

Last night we headed out to Lowes and bought a quart of blue paint. Same store as last time, different person (obviously a more competant one). So we were able the finish the blue in the background.
The next stage was to start adding waves near the bottom.




I worked on painting in the light highlights on top.



We also decided to add a dark border to contain the image and to distract from charcoal lines we tried to erase, then tried to paint over.






This is where we stopped today (almost done!). Tomorrow we try to clean up the wall behind it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Painting Dolphins in the sun

The last two days we've certainly made progress with the mural...



I added the top blue color (no it's not the sky). We ran out of dark blue again which made fixing the fish almost impossible.





Mike ran to Lowes and to get another quart of it, but they said this time that they only sell it in gallons (we've already purchase 2 quarts of blue from them on separate occasions, so yes, I'm confused).



We ended Monday by adding dark shading to the dolphins with our dark gray.



After spending many delirious hours sizzling in the sun on Monday. A VERY nice lady named Robin brought us her umbrella to work under for Tuesday.





It was much better working conditions and we managed to render the dolphins all morning.



This is where we stopped.... We're off to buy more blue for tomorrow. Wish us luck!
"People are willing to take these extraordinary chances to become writers, musicians, or painters, and because of them, we have a culture. If this ever stops, our culture will die, because most of our culture, in fact, has been created by people that got paid nothing for it--people like Edgar Allan Poe, Vincent Van Gogh or Mozart."-Kurt Vonnegut

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