Sunday, October 20, 2013

San Carlos 1969

After I did the last post, I remembered that I had slides that I had copied to my computer. They're not the best, but better than I dared hope after all this time. We had a 60 something VW bus that my husband had converted to a camper. He did all the carpentry work and secured it in place. Of course, it wasn't self-contained, but it carried the kids and all our gear, and we had a table to eat inside, and we could all sleep inside if the weather was bad.

This is a picture of the beach, and I have no clue of the direction. We are apparently preparing for an afternoon storm. Below Susie is taking a nap, unusual for her. She was 4, Mike was 6, and Tammy had just turned 10. Those were seat cushions from inside. I have no idea why we were using them outside. We probably didn't have lawn chairs. Can you believe I don't remember some ancient history?

We didn't do this trip on our own. I worked special events for the University of New Mexico, and Mary Barnes was my boss. She invited us to go down with her family. She had several boys older than my Michael, but he loved to fish, and they somehow caught these sharks (?) plus an octopus.

Below, a family vacation portrait! Dad is obviously taking the picture. He took the greatest pictures with his Cannon that he bought while on R&R in Japan during the Korean War. I believe the swim suit that Tammy is wearing is the one she wore while on the swim team at the Coronado Club on Kirtland Air Force Base.

He caught this one on a hook, not in his bare hands!

Along the roadside, a veritable palace. Most that we encountered on the beach lived in corrugated shacks. Trip over; forward a life time.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

San Carlos, Mexico

So, can't you just hear a Mexican guitar strumming in the background? Last weekend I had the opportunity to caravan south of the border to a place I've visited many times over the past 40 years. The first time was in the late 60's when the kids were little. Poor Fred, plagued with Montezuma's revenge, slept on a bench on the porch of the banos, and Michael dropped a fish he caught in his bare hands on my stomach as I lay sunning myself on the beach. Tammy got stung by a jelly fish. The only thing I remember about Sue was that she was sitting on a rock in her little blue bathing suit looking unhappy about something. The adults decided to try and boil an octopus to death. Not the prescribed way to cook it. On our way back to Albuquerque, we stopped at Kino Bay, a fishing village, a little north of San Carlos. Some fishermen had too many trigger fish and gave us some. The kids didn't like to eat fish, so we told them it was chicken. After the first plate, they wanted more. We didn't tell them until much later that it was really fish. We always lied to them about food: we told them that liver was steak. To this day, when we get together, the kids want me to cook liver and onions.

 This is the beach at dawn in front of our condos. The birds and I were the only ones on the beach at dawn, and they didn't seem to mind me.

Below is the San Carlos landmark: the mountain formation, Tetakawi, sacred ground to the local inhabitants.

This is the sunrise over the mountains to the east of El Estero del Soldado, an estuary adjacent to the condos. My good friend Bill Graham, a marine biologist who lives in San Carlos, works to help preserve the wildlife there. He took me on a tour of the area to help me get my bearings and realize where the old Shangri-La was. That was the name of the campground and the beach where we had our adventures beginning in the 60's. After the tour, we had a lunch of fresh shrimp and veggies, and he showed me around his beautiful home that he and his late wife built and decorated. She was quite the artist.

These two seem to be having a Mexican stand-off. Just my interpretation.

Our beach with a view of Tetakawi. I take a zillion pictures, but I have to selective in which ones I can build a story around, and then sometimes, I just want to show the beauty of where I'm visiting.

In the late 80's and early 90's, we were told that the Mexican government bought this area which was adjacent to Shangri-La, and built this beautiful marina. Gary and I stayed here while they were building it, because he had made friends with the security people on one of his trips without me. Water came through the back window of the Jamboree, so we had to hang our bedding out to dry. Gary opened up the awning, and we hung it from there. That evening, we decided to go to a restaurant on the top of the hill. When we got there, the patrons said, "Oh, you're the people with your sheets flapping in the wind!" I guess you've got to be known for something. Below is a picture of the restaurant as it looks today. The security guard at the marina told me that it had been out of commission for years. They had built a venue for parties and weddings on the old beach where we used to camp, but the guard said I could go over there and take pictures.

The boat pictured above is a 15 foot West Wight Potter. That was the first sail boat that Gary bought after we were married in 1980. Great sailing adventurers sail these craft around the world. We had a lot of fun in that boat before he bought the 30 foot Naomi James that he sailed across the Baja from this marina.

Where those big houses are used to be kitchette apartments. One Columbus Day weekend when I was teaching, he thought he was surprising me by bringing me here. He was so disappointed when I recognized the campground. It didn't matter; we had a wonderful weekend, and later brought our motor home here in the summer. We ended up meeting some tremendous people from Australia who visited us in Elephant Butte in later years. In taking this picture, I'm standing on the beach that used to be part of Shangri-La. Unfortunately, I didn't take a picture of the beach. It ended up being a lot smaller than I remembered it.

This adventure was a trip down memory lane for me. I didn't take as many pictures as I normally do, but I had my travel group to visit with, and we ate a lot of good food and had fun getting to know one another.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Xavier del Bac

The story behind these photos is that one of my photography groups decided to do a shoot of Xavier del Bac at sunset. As you can see, all of the photos except the last one was done before sunset. I saw a lot of opportunities with the light and clouds, so I took advantage.

I have a lot of shots like the one below, but this one is special, because it's straight from the camera, absolutely no enhancements. It had been raining all day and I was worried that it wouldn't clear in time for the shoot. I have more of the rain on the city to the north and east of where we are just before sunset. That's what I get for taking so many pictures; it takes me a while to sort through them and decide which ones I feel are good enough for public consumption.

Postscript: I live less than a mile from this landmark.

Randomness at the Desert Museum

I guess I could go out to the Desert Museum every day, and I do have enough opportunities and excuses that I get there quite often. It's different every time because the plants are reacting to the change in season. Below are flowers on a barrel cactus that I enhanced a little.

This is a datura. I must have hundreds of shots of datura., a lot with bees feeding inside the flower.

This Great Blue Heron is behind glass, so I don't remember how I was lucky enough to get this shot.