Thursday, October 29, 2015

Amazing AirShow in Manta

When I saw the poster on Facebook about an Airshow in Manta, I thought "that'd be cool" but I never thought we would go. 

But then a blog reader from Australia emailed and said he was here in Ecuador visiting family, and would we want to meet for lunch or dinner...where? Manta! After exchanging some emails we found ourselves with an invitation to a whole weekend of fun and family, not having met any of these people before we were of course ready for the worst, but in true Ecuadorean style it was the best weekend we'd had in a long time! 

This is the area of Manta where the Airshow was to be seen, and low and behold one of those apartment buildings is where we were staying! These were taken Saturday afternoon, fun to see how much different from our little beach. The morning of the airshow we wandered down to the beach to see it when it began, but as we wandered around, we realized we should go to the apartments rooftop deck. (Beach was Crowded and hot)

By the time these guys landed we were up on the roof so this picture is from Facebook

Neighboring apartment buildings, having the same idea. Even though it was sunny on the roof, there was much more breeze than down on the beach, so it was lovely.

The big blank spot was roped off for the parachutes to land.

And later, after the parachutes landed, the people were allowed to use the area, it was crazy to watch the mass exodus. What an amazing view from here!

These jets really made your heart race. And then the acrobats...

To be honest, some of these pictures are not ours. We had three people taking pictures that day, and we all shared, and there may be some googled pictures, if none of ours came out. But it WAS amazing and gave us goosebumps.

As did the view, the city with Montecristi in the background.

We were on top of the 9th floor, not too high, but high enough to stay away from the edge! We enjoyed the rest of the day with pool party and bbq. Met other families who live in the building, and made new friends.

We stayed til sunset, then got a ride home from our new friends. Wow! Step outside your comfort zone, and you just may have a great time! Thank you to our wonderful Manta hosts, and to Chile for the terrific anniversary present! We look forward to another airshow, maybe for the 100th anniversary?

So...stay tuned, the adventure continues!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Photo Album

While I'm waiting for the pictures from the weekend in Manta, I've decided to clean out my Camera Roll and share some random photos.

Here is an adorable little van we had parked right outside the fence the other day. So cute with its retro green and orange stripe, would love to vacation in this up and down the coast.

Another cool "find" on the beach...

These clever little folding spoons come on the yogurt package (maybe other foods as well) and they are surprisingly sturdy for being foldable plastic. Well done Ecuador, of course we did find it washed up on the maybe there should be a little more teaching about littering...

One more picture of my painted coconut pumpkins, because I'm really impressed with them. :)

And some painted sand dollars I'm doing for Christmas decorations/ornaments.

Did I mention I'm getting "organic" eggs delivered every Saturday morning? I buy 10 for $2 can you tell which one is organic? 

High tide washed under the gate yesterday morning. No biggee, for water to get into the house, this whole courtyard would have to be full 6-8" deep, or waves that high would have to get in. Not saying that couldn't happen, but so far it seems unlikely. There certainly may be sandbags in our future, but I'd rather shovel SAND than shovel SNOW!!

Almost time for a morning walk, cool and overcast, low tide is at 9am. Can't wait to see what else the high tide brought us along the coast in the night. Stay tuned, the adventure continues!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Washed Ashore.Org

The Washed Ashore Project is a non-profit, community-based organization with a mission of educating and creating awareness about marine debris and plastic pollution through art. Washed Ashore is a project of The Artula Institute for Arts & Environmental Education, whose mission is to provide opportunities to express and teach environmental issues through the arts.

Under the leadership of Angela Haseltine Pozzi, community members of all ages work together to clean up our beaches and process the debris into art supplies to construct giant sculptures of the sea life most affected by plastic pollution. This has resulted in thousands of pounds of debris removed from local beaches and turned into works of art. These unique art pieces are part of a traveling exhibition that includes educational signage and programs that encourage reducing, refusing, reusing, repurposing and recycling.

As lead artist, Angela Haseltine Pozzi orchestrates the construction of these towering, aesthetically striking sculptures of marine life with the assistance of many volunteers and a dedicated staff. Angela has been an exhibiting artist and educator for more than 30 years and now chooses to use art as a powerful tool to encourage community and environmental action about her true passion…cleaning up the world’s oceans.

90% of the debris we collect is petroleum-based: plastic items, nylon ropes and net. We are able to use 98% of this trash to create sculptures, including a walk-through replica of an ocean gyre, a Styrofoam coral reef, Henry the fish, a plastic bottle sea jelly, an oil-spill replica, and a musical sea star (tuned to an e-flat scale!). An interdisciplinary environmental arts curriculum and a feature-length documentary are in progress to accompany this work.

They have a cute little website, calendar of events and more pictures. I've been collecting things I find, maybe someday I'll build a sculpture, now that I have some inspiration. These are really amazing, such vision.

So...stay tuned, the adventure continues!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

A day in the life

When one is retired, their time is their own, for some that is the problem, not for me. I enjoy not having anything "on my schedule". That being said, I do anxiously await for Friday's, that is the day I am now doing my fruit and veg shopping. The fruit truck parks in El Centro between 10am ish and 2pm ish, I go now at 11ish, and he's been there every time. The lady who owns MiniMart, Lilliana is there picking her produce too. Saves me a $1 (or $2, if Mike goes) not having to take the bus to Charapoto on Sunday's, and I don't have to carry everything so far. Here are pictures of our purchase last Friday.

$13 for two lbs of strawberries, half a HUGE papaya, mandarins, oranges, maracuya, pineapple, peppers, tomatoes, green onions, broccoli, apples and potatoes. We shared the mandarins with the fishermen out front and should have shared strawberries, because Mike just couldn't eat them fast enough.

Here's what I did after I took these pictures, made my smoothie fixins for the week.

Papaya, pineapple and banana go in the freezer so I don't have to use ice. Add yogurt, water and maracuya and yum!

So, now that I've got my shopping, fruit cleaning and smoothie prep done it's time to do a project. Last year as I realized holiday decorations aren't prevalent my mind started coming up with alternatives. Here is one thing I came up with. Use what you have laying around!

Coconut pumpkins for fall? How about taking that one step farther...

I'm pretty happy with the result. I'd collected the coconuts weeks ago, so they were good and dry, and recently bought oil paint which made them nice and shiny. What else can I do with coconuts? Stay tuned...

In keeping with my theme of A day in the life it's...Probably time for lunch, so I go back inside. Might be getting too windy for the umbrella outside anyway, lunch and an afternoon project watching a movie or TV series. This project took a couple days, as I had to remake it, but again I'm happy with the result.

I was given three pairs of jeans, so I mixed two of the different colored (wash) jeans and a bit of blue muslin and Tshirt material to make this wave inspired pillow. It was all done by hand, as my newly acquired sewing machine is under the weather...hmmm...the denim material was actually easier than the muslin to work with, but it taught me how differently fabrics react.

We go back outside anytime after 4:30 or 5, after the heat of the blazing sun has died down, a little happy hour snack and beverage and watch the sunset.

A small "lake" has formed again, but was gone in the morning. Made for a pretty picture! Dinner and a little TV, and I kid you not, we could be ready for bed by 8pm! So, there you have it, a typical day here on the coast (forgot to mention we had our beach walk before the fruit truck at 11). We do what we want, and have realized 

Stay tuned! The adventure continues!

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Castles in the Sand

Sometime earlier this week a notice showed up on Facebook advertising a sand sculpture event in Crucita Boca, it said it was to take place Friday at 9am, so we waited. Friday morning low tide was at 8 and we walked down to see what we could see from across the river, not much. A couple piles of sand and the tents being put up was all we could see. A little before 11am, I contacted our friends at Casa WF who got out the binoculars, but said they couldn't see any sculptures as there were too many bystanders, so at least there was good turnout. I found out from Facebook that one of the expats in San Clemente was on his way back on his bike, so I knew there were pictures to be seen.

John McDonald did do a blog post about it, but his pictures were too large for me to share with you here, but this morning, again on Facebook, PortoViejo tourism posted these.

They had a stage with music, and dancers of Manabi, and quite the shindig from what I hear.  They only had til about 4 when high tide would probably take all this away, but til then fun was had!

The flyer had said there would be two sculptures, but I guess they had enough sand for more, not sure who was working on them, but they did a good job.

Casa WF in the background, across the river.

And the favorite of the day was this one, with bonus water and greenery. This week has been a holiday, with kids out of school, so the tourism department picked a good day for it. It was a great crowd.

Growing up at the beach in Southern California, I've seen some sand sculptures, this brought back some fond, although faint memories. It's true, you can take the girl from the beach, but not the beach from the girl...and here I am, back at the beach. Stay tuned, the adventure continues!