This and that

elyssum
Sweet allysum and wet stone.

LET’S LOOK AT a bit of this and a tad of that, if you please.

The monsoon began a bit late this year, and it’s still getting its sea legs, so to speak. We like it when the rain starts, even though we dislike it by September when it’s outlived its welcome, and the mud is growing old.

A quite noticeable result of rainfall is the blooming of sweet alyssum, a ground cover that looks like snowfall. From January to June, it’s brown and appears dead, but give it a couple of days of rain, and this is what happens. Sweet,  huh?

In other news, City Hall opened our two main plazas downtown a few weeks back because it thought the incidence of Kung Flu was winding down. That lasted about a week until the plazas were taped off again, and that’s how it remains today.

When will this end? I’ve not experienced such a lousy year since 1995 when my last wife dumped me, and then 1997 when a romance with a lovely Latina ended by mutual insanity. You can read about that here if you wish.

lampI enjoy décor, and I like to take photos. Here is one I took yesterday when I found myself in the bedroom, looking at the scene, and with camera in hand. I’m so good at décor that you’d think I’d be gay, but I’m not.

I bought this lamp in the first few months after I moved to the mountaintop from the nearby state capital almost 20 years ago. It’s made locally, woven from a reed found in the area, if memory serves.

The lamp is almost two feet high.

It’s one of the few pieces of furniture we brought to the Hacienda from the two-story rental closer to downtown where I lived previously, two and a half years — one and a half solo and one more with my child bride.

Speaking of the state capital, we’ll be driving there today for a shopping expedition, a weekly event that gets us out of the house, and we might even eat lasagna.

Eye of the camera

sunset

PULLING INTO the Hacienda Wednesday evening, I saw this sky over the sex motel next door, so I took a shot. I always tote the small Fujifilm camera in my man bag.

The bigger, better Canon is far heavier and usually stays at home.

And minutes before that shot, as I was rounding a corner on the neighborhood plaza, I stopped and photographed the distant mountains past the high railroad track.

street

A few days ago, I was on the big plaza downtown, sitting at the coffee shop. Just across from me was this girl. She’s one of a pretty trio that sometimes sits there blabbing and laughing for hours and drinking beer, but she was alone that day.

A few minutes after I photographed her, one of the others appeared, the one who looks like Salma Hayek, and joined her. The one in the photo pulled out a cigarette and stuck it into a holder, all Hollywood-like. They do that. Pretty girls but silly.

It’s fun to take pictures.

girl

Photographic memories

I’VE LABORED the last few days switching photos from one internet provider (SlickPic) to another (Flickr). There were over 500 shots, so it took quite a while, especially since I passed some of them through a service that gussied them up.

I reduced the 500+ to 425 but only 248 are visible to the public. You can see them here.

When my second wife kicked me to the curb in 1995, I left behind almost all photos taken during the 19 years I spent with her. And when I moved to Mexico in 2000, I culled even further. Most photos I have now were shot since I moved south.

But not all.

There are lots, and almost all are digital, i.e. online, nowhere else. One reason I moved to Flickr, which is far better than it used to be, is that it’s free (up to a point), and the photos will not vanish one year when I fail to pay. That could happen when I’m dead, and I want my child bride to have access to them.

During this process I came across some photos I’d not noticed in years, and I’m going to show a few to you. The first was taken in Mexico City in the 1970s. I was sitting with a French friend I’ve known since we met in the Air Force in 1963. He is a legal immigrant.

Torre
Atop the Torre Latinoamericana in Mexico City.

That’s me on the left, of course. I weighed about 225 pounds. Nowadays, I weigh about 165, making me rather skinny at 6′-3″ tall. I prefer the adjectives svelte, lean or trim. Skinny doesn’t sound good. I trimmed down around 1980 with a bit of effort.

48114901483_5ae98d1cef_o
Felipe in drag.

And here I am beardless, a bit earlier than the above photo. I’m in the French Quarter of New Orleans, an extra in a movie titled Octoroon. The movie won no Oscars. Quite the contrary. It went straight to drive-ins. I was only in the first scene, walking down a sidewalk.

Oddly, I’ve always wanted to be an actor, and would have done theater work in New Orleans or Houston except for the fact that my newspaper career always had me working evenings, and that’s when theaters present plays. I never had a chance.

Thwarted by fate. I coulda been somebody!

And here is a photo of me and my mother that was taken during a visit to Georgia shortly after I relocated to Mexico. She died in 2009 at the age of 90.

48114563592_6ab630793a_o

Now let’s look way back to 1956. Here I am in, I think, the 7th Grade. I’m the kid in the middle. The boy on the right is Larry. A few years later, he lost a leg in a grisly highway accident during a nighttime hayride.

Are you old enough to remember hayrides?

Another boy, a friend of mine, was killed in that same accident. I had been invited to go, but I didn’t, and I don’t remember why. Luck, I guess.

New Image
Look at those multicolored loafers I’m sporting.

It’s been a fun few days looking at the past.

Our spectacular pond

lake
Photographed by yours truly.

IN THE TROTSKY Museum in Mexico City there’s a framed photo on the wall, a shot of the old commie Leon fishing from a skiff in our lake. Perhaps if he’d stayed here, he would have avoided that pick in his head, the one that killed him.

Yesterday was the 16th birthday of our nephew whom we once called the Little Vaquero, but he’s not so little anymore. A birthday shindig was thrown for him at a scenic lookout that’s called the Estribo. There are two Estribos in the area, the big one and the little one. This photo was shot from the big one, which is higher than the little one.

The view, as you can plainly see, is spectacular.

I took this shot about 6:30 p.m. There are islands in the lake that are reachable via motor launches from a dock that’s not far from downtown.

Nice, huh?