Sunday, August 30, 2020

P-51 Mustang

Finished on Sept. 29, 2019. Revell's 1/32 kit, initial release in 1969. Made one back then, now a second. R.A.F. Mustang, OK-to-dreadful fit, cracky old decals even after 2 coats of decal film. I bought some new ones. No rearview mirror, antenna, or pitot tube installed; to me such odd bits just distract from the model as a lovely object: 

F-16 Aggressor

 F-16 US Navy Aggressor, Russian camo pattern. The 1/72 Revell kit, 1985 release of 1981 molds. Hand- and airbrushed, enamels and acrylics. Guards insignia taken from a 1/35 BMP kit by ESCI. Pairs well with the Kfir: 


Israeli knockoff of the Mirage, dressed like a Russian, in the US Navy's Aggressor unit. Hand- and airbrushed, mostly enamels. Italeri 1987 initial release.

Tupolev 2

 Handbrushed with craftstore acrylics, this is the 1/72 VEB Plasticart kit from 1977: 

Heinkel 51, 1/72

Hasegawa's 1970 kit, built it in 2018, handbrushed with craftstore acrylics: 

Karas 23 1/72

 Quirky Polish plane which first flew in 1934. Heller's retooled 1978 kit. handbrushed with craftstore acrylics:


 Genoa, 1981

Palazzo Bianco

Genoa, 1981

Frieze Detail


Genoa, 1981

Esso Club

 1977 pen and ink of the Esso Club in Clemson, SC. Still there, although no so quaint.


Our courtyard is separated from the street and our neighbors by a 10' tall wall. It's way private, although one can see much of the adjacent ones from a second-floor balcony, which we all have. Yesterday a young man who is, like all of us, cooped up, was on his balcony for a hour or so talking to his girlfriend: querida...querida...te extra├▒o... We could see each other of course, but I pretended he wasn't there, and vice-versa. I suppose he preferred to be overheard by the gringo than his family. Anyway, while sitting there in my social invisibility, I was reminded of this now-old poem: 

Mending Wall

Something there is that doesn't love a wall,
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it,
And spills the upper boulders in the sun;
And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
The work of hunters is another thing:
I have come after them and made repair
Where they have left not one stone on a stone,
But they would have the rabbit out of hiding,
To please the yelping dogs. The gaps I mean,
No one has seen them made or heard them made,
But at spring mending-time we find them there.
I let my neighbor know beyond the hill;
And on a day we meet to walk the line
And set the wall between us once again.
We keep the wall between us as we go.
To each the boulders that have fallen to each.
And some are loaves and some so nearly balls
We have to use a spell to make them balance:
‘Stay where you are until our backs are turned!’
We wear our fingers rough with handling them.
Oh, just another kind of out-door game,
One on a side. It comes to little more:
There where it is we do not need the wall:
He is all pine and I am apple orchard.
My apple trees will never get across
And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him.
He only says, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’
Spring is the mischief in me, and I wonder
If I could put a notion in his head:
‘Why do they make good neighbors? Isn't it
Where there are cows? But here there are no cows.
Before I built a wall I'd ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offense.
Something there is that doesn't love a wall,
That wants it down.’ I could say ‘Elves’ to him,
But it's not elves exactly, and I'd rather
He said it for himself. I see him there
Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top
In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed.
He moves in darkness as it seems to me,
Not of woods only and the shade of trees.
He will not go behind his father's saying,
And he likes having thought of it so well
He says again, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’


Nice mess of beets from recent outing. Janet cuts them into chunks and boils them in orange juice. Delightful.


Cuenca, Ecuador. Night shot of the city and our house circled in red. Photo by Homero Ortega Salamea, who has many more at his FB page. 

Memento Mori

 My mother-in-law died a couple of months ago. Not a sad time. She and her husband made my future wife- wotta deal! Here she is in the splendor of youth, second from left, with her brand-new husband and the rest of her family. She outlived them all. Cheers, Beverley, as always. I'll see ya soon: 

Intercity bus

 Nice pix of Guayaquil's bus station. On occasion we take the bus from Cuenca, then fly to the US from here. It's 3 stories tall, and buses run in and out of all 3 levels. On a busy day it'll move more than 80k people. The ground floor is half mall (with a big grocery store), half station. The upper levels are all bus business, with a big covered playground. It's pretty spectacular busing in and out of the top floor. It's right beside the airport, which is convenient, and across the street from the main metropolitan bus station, which is a huge covered open-air facility.


 Pix by daughter of a 2-block long alley we use as a shortcut between our house and the SuperAki grocery store: 


 Nothing gives the same sense of well-being as 3 fresh tanks of propane, 1 for the stove, 1 for hot water, 1 for the dryer:


 Sellers come by our Ecuador house weekly, if not daily. Regulars sell propane, brooms, seafood, peanuts, trashbags, eggs, potatoes, veggies, and fruit. Many call out what they sell. Just bought these mandarines and limes a few minutes ago, a buck a bag. The seller singsongs "Naranjas...Mandarinas...Limones" so that we can be at the gate with money when they pass. It's a pleasant life rhythm that also extends to the gas trucks and other vendors.


Genova, 1981. The city is so steep that the roads slowly zig-zag up the mountainsides. The slopes were terraced long ago for olive groves, said my neighbors; in the last century, apartment blocks blossomed instead. But the salitas went straight up, breathless shortcuts for the walkers. In those days, they were also quiet places for the addicts to shoot up. More than once I walked down while i drogati sped past on Vespas, with disposable syringes and the dope they had scored far below in the Port.