Category Archives: Doings

Still more Pterodactyl

Sprouting up like mushrooms after a rain (not that we have had much in the way of rain), why it’s the tents of a local art festival.  It’s a chance for starving artists to meet with the tight-fisted public, and perhaps flog a little art on this beautiful sunny day.   (For some reason there was no dinosaur art represented, go figure.)

And the fair is located at a downtown park, usually empty.  But for today  the park’s main attraction is a giant rotating circle that sprays water onto children (no dogs allowed) and perhaps a stray pterodactyl or two.

Hey Pteri, I think that you really need to do something about that breath.

Perhaps a small treat will do the trick.  Yes, that’s better.

What’s that on stage right now?  It’s Pteri pretending to be the star of the show. However you slice it,  Pteri is certainly the best pterodactyl of the day.

 

Pterodactyl about Town pt.4

Hey wait a minute!   That looks like a traditional teahouse from Tajikistan located right behind Pteri.   (I know, who knew such a thing was possible?)

And here is the beautiful interior.   Oh Pteri, quit clowning around and sit down at the table.

My father always said (well not always, he did also say other things) “straighten up and fly right”.   And I suppose that this is good advice for any pterodactyl too.

And the reward is a lovely cup of chai tea, just like they make in Tajikistan, wherever that might be.

Pterodactyl about Town, pt.3

Pterodactyls grow up and love to explore new places.   So on this day Pteri decided to see the university town to the north.   And it is worlds away from our comfortable city, in more ways than one.

This town has a large pedestrian mall that replaced the old heart of the former business district, so once one finds a spot to park, it’s a great place for people watching.  And what sort of people does one find?

Well gosh, we don’t have any of these (a guy balancing on chairs while keeping up a continuous line of blather in the hope of some donations from the crowd) around here.  We don’t even usually have crowds.

And we especially don’t have any of these, which was apparently a dance? troupe of half naked men.   They certainly were dancing to the beat of their own drum.

But there are also art galleries everywhere.   And pterodactyls have a well known (at least to me) affinity for art.

No Pteri, I know that looks like food, but you can’t eat it (it wouldn’t be very tasty for one thing, and it probably costs a bomb).   So we had better stop for now and find some place to have a snack.   (To be continued.)

Pterodactyl About Town, pt.2

No ordinary pterodactyl, this one turns up in the swankiest places, like today’s political event, held at the estate of a late city father.

Nice fountain.   Pteri scared it into just dribbling.

Although I will admit that the Buddhist statue guarding the entry way seems to be singularly unimpressed by the sight of a pterodactyl.  Perhaps this happens all the time.

This is more like it:  attacking the stone decorations.

It was a political event, so there must be flags.

And every politician knows the real secret to getting people to turn out for an event is to provide some food.  Nom nom, delicious catered food.  It’s the standard fare of a picnic, baked beans, potato salad, hamburgers and brownies.   To bad that it wasn’t the weather for a picnic, it started to rain, so off we went.

Ordinary food

I did challenge myself to see if the food I make really looks that bad, so I made everything from the last post.

Here’s my version of a taco salad, lettuce, beans, meat, green onion (I did put in some avocado because the previous one had some), avocado, tomato, tortilla chips, and cheese.   The dressing is salsa and mayo.   It’s an easy recipe and one can add or subtract ingredients to use up whatever is at hand.

Here’s my version of corn soup, it’s rather bland looking in comparison to the restaurant one, but mine has bacon in it, so it wins the contest.  Ingredients are corn, potato, onions, broth and bacon, so the recipe is simple and delicious.

The taco is being propped up by the kitchen shears, which were close at hand.   I don’t have a fancy holder for tacos, but the tacos are okay if a little lopsided.   Meat. salsa, lettuce, tomato and lots of cheese in a commercially made shell.   (Not as tasty as the restaurant ones) 🙁

The stuffed Poblano  pepper does not look nearly as nice as the restaurant version, but both were equally delicious.  Mine has a meat, onion, green chili and bread stuffing, and is disguised in a green chili sauce and plenty of cheese.

Ultimately, I like both kinds of creations:  in restaurant food they need it to look nice (and hopefully taste nice) so that one feels that the food is worth the money, but home cooking means that food is prepared exactly to one’s own preference, and that is a good thing too.

 

 

Training

I hate to drive long distances (over four hours away), so after I got to Santa Fe, there was the question of how to get back.   I could take a plane ($$$) to Denver, and then take the shuttle home.   Or I could take the train and see if I still liked it as a way to travel.   I hadn’t taken a train in America in years (at least 35), but I had taken trains in Europe, so I decided to give it a go.

The first issue:  the train doesn’t actually go to Santa Fe (because of the grade), so it was off to Lamy, NM.

The train creeps along a similar, but slightly different path than the interstate (motorway).   I wondered who had lived in these adobe ruins, and how long ago that was.

This ruin was the Casteneda Hotel, built by Fred Harvey to draw tourists to the southwest.  It hasn’t been in use for years, but someone with deep pockets is renovating the place in the hope of attracting rich tourists  (who like to ride the train) again.

The train does feature this lovely observation car so that one can watch the scenery as it goes by.   No photos, but I did see wild turkeys, buffalo, deer, antelope and elk as we rolled along.

This is M’s uncle’s place, and I know that I have posted pictures from the house looking towards the tracks.  That’s Santa Clara mesa in the background.

And I know I have posted lots of pictures of the mound, too bad that it was an overcast day this time.   And you can see that it is dry as a bone there.

The beautiful high plains of New Mexico, with Capulin in the distance.  I never get tired of this view, although I am usually looking at it from the other direction as I come over Raton Pass.   Yes it was definitely a great idea to ride the train this time.

Still more art

There is a certain pleasure in unchanging exhibits at art museums.   It is quite lovely to visit with one’s favorite pieces of art.  When I was a youngster I loved to visit Hosukai’s Great Wave  in it’s hidden corner of the big art museum.  And I thought it was was both beautiful and enigmatic (and a lovely shade of blue).

But there is also something to be said for changing exhibits, especially in a smaller museum, like our local museum.  One never knows what sort of things might be on display:  like these bits of art from Haiti.

I have no idea what this means and all the artistic blather that inspired this piece, I thought it looked interesting (and it was covered in glitter, which is always a good thing).

I do love surrealist art as well.

I had wondered what to do with my collection of tiny plastic figures, here was the answer staring me in the face.

Why not?

Sometimes one has to just surrender to the art.

Downtown

Halloween only comes once a year, October 31st (although people do sneak in extra parties around this date), so what is a person who likes to dress up to do?   Cosplay offers the opportunity for one to dress up as a myriad of sci-fi and popular culture icons.  Young women favor sexy characters, like Harley Quinn, etc.  but there really wasn’t a way for old people to play too.  Until now.

Star Wars created the opportunity for some great cosplay, this was a temporary booth where one could rent fancy dress, be an empress for a day.

But for some costumes one has to have the build to wear them.   If you’re tall, and wish to be anonymous, how about Chewbacca?  And you don’t have to say anything.

Then there is dressing up as an old Luke Skywalker and princess Admiral Leia?   (And save the rather chilly slavegirl Leia outfit for the very young women).

 

He seemed a little tall for a Han Solo, but obviously was having fun with it, and I suppose that is the main point of doing this.

New Year

And a Happy New Year to everyone from Godzilla, Pteri and Topsy.

Also Rosa sends her best wishes to all for a splendid 2018.   She is looking forward to another year of destroying people’s expensive landscaping and she hopes the same for you.  (She also hopes that they don’t allow hunting in town of these tame herds of deer).

Cars

Besides festivals I also like car shows.  And not with just any sort of cars, I love the steel and chrome of vintage cars.   Because back when these cars were manufactured, styling was everything.   And no detail was unimportant, even a detail like hood ornaments (note for young people: almost every car had a bit of chrome on the front of the hood that proclaimed it’s identity).

This one on a vintage Cadillac features a flying person, just to let one know that riding along in this car was almost like flying. (sort of).

For the more literal minded, this one has a stylized bird.

How about one featuring a greyhound, they are known to be quite fast.

But not as fast as a wheeled rocket (a wheeled rocket??).   I’m sure this mash-up of two ideas symbolizes great speed.

This hood ornament was on the oldest car at the show.   I love the way the chrome is an integral part of the hood (bonnet to you Brits).  The hood ornament is not a stylized anything really, just a bit of bling, to help speed you down the road.