Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Isla memories...

I haven't done an Isla post for awhile, so I thought it's about time. It kind of came about when I finally bit the bullet and bought a portable hard drive for all my photos. I had been storing them on CDs which became VERY inconvenient when I would look for ONE particular photo. So I have an old computer with my first photos of Isla from back in September of 2006 that I downloaded onto this portable drive which were kind of fun to see again.

This is one of them. Now I saw this again in May of 2007, but didn't see it last Christmas or this past May/June. Did they paint over it, or did I just miss it?? I know I walked down that street again...can't believe I wouldn't have seen it.

Just another east side view. Can't get enough of those. Wish I could wake up to this every morning.

Even an occasional blurry picture turns out kind of cool. The camera I had back then was just a basic no frills Kodak. But you never know what you're gonna get.

Stormy skies.

I can't believe I got such a surprisingly sharp shot of Gran Puerto with such a cheap camera! And no one is ever going to get a pic like this again. I'll have to get the same shot next time for comparison. Considering the big parking garage that has gone up behind it, the view will never be the same.

And here's a pic leaving Isla. Kind of nice without Senor Frog, eh?

Siesta on the stairs.

This was one of my favorite "first trip" photos taken of Loncheria Chely (now closed) across from Alexia & Geovanny's.

The friendly waiter at La Adelita.

Another view to the east that you're not going to see again.

This one kind of got lost in my menagerie of that aqua door.

Now we get to Christmas 2007 photos. Winnie the Pooh and Isla...just like peanut butter and chocolate and marshmallows. Nevermind...Winnie the Pooh is about the last thing I think of when I think of Isla.

I loved the netting they had on this sign when I took this picture in May of this trip. Last time I was there, the netting was not there. Oh, well.

I saw this picture and I can't even remember where it was taken! It doesn't ring any bells at all. Maybe someone else can recognize it??

The rest of these photos were taken on my last trip in May/June, but didn't pay much attention to them for some reason. This was taken on the corner of Zazil-Ha.

Boats shot.

"Love the color of the water" shot.

Taken from Justicia Social.

One of those pics showing the difference in the colors of the water.

Photo of the northwest corner from the pier...another "love the colors" one.

One of the nicer shots of Playa Norte I got considering all the sand bags, posts and junk that are there now.

A "lotsa boats" picture...two pleasure boats on the left, an UltraMar Ferry in the background, and one of the navy boats preparing for el presidente on June 1st.

One of the healthier (and happier) looking pups I've seen on the island. But he has a collar so that says something.

The last trip definitely offered some different photo ops.

I thought this one was nice because of the nice clean view from Na sandbags, chairs, beds, etc.

A shot of the boats I had missed before.

And I always appreciate the "unappreciated" side of Isla.

Here's a place for rent right on Hidalgo.

A couple different views of the Madonna.

And the community hang-out place for locals.

I took this from the window of Cafe Cito. This is why I love Isla so much. You see a collection of every different kind of person on the island...students, natives, children, old folks, 30-something, 40-something, 50-something...everyone. And EVERYONE is having a great time...being laid back, enjoying life, appreciating a little slice of paradise.

I originally discarded this photo because of the water spots on the lens. But when I looked at it again, I remembered how I was sitting on the back steps of the ferry that go to the top level taking picture after picture, trying to get the last memories of the place I love. So now the water spots don't seem so bad.

Till next time, Isla...

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Quilts, quilts and more quilts!

Yes, it was the annual quilt show in New Braunfels, Texas, this weekend, so I had to check it out...especially since my sister-in-law, Caryl Gaubatz, is an avid quilter. Now I've quilted a couple of small wall-hangings was by hand and one by sewing machine. I enjoyed doing them, but I will be the first to admit that I don't have the patience to do this...especially the hand quilting. But after my feeble attempts, I have a deep appreciation for the people that have a unique talent at this form of art.

Quilting has gone WAY beyond your grandmother throwing a few pieces of left-over fabric together to keep you warm at night. Although you have to appreciate the history of that, quilting has become an art in its own right, which I experienced today. Since Caryl is extremely talented at this, I will begin with the pieces she had displayed.

This is a small art quilt called "Redemption." It is hand-dyed and degummed silk organza, ink jet printed photos on silk habutai, hand-embroidered, machine-quilted, screen-printed. The hand-embroidered portrait of a mother and her new born is contrasted with photos of children encountered by the artist in Saudi Arabia and Iraq during the first Gulf War. "Redemption comes when we love our children more than we hate our enemies." Notice the obscure faces in the background...very haunting.

A close-up in which you can see the detail of the work. (You can click on the photo to see a larger image.)

This one is what is known as "wearable art." "Hundertwasser's Holiday" is a hand-painted vest with thickened dyes on silk broadcloth. Friedensreich Hundertwasser (born 1928 in Austria) is a painter, architect and visionary, who was "green" before his time. His work is characterized by bold bright colors and a profound respect for the environment. Caryl was inspired by his imagery and color schemes when she created this vest.

Another close-up of the details.

I wish I had the details to all the other quilts on display, but just had to satisfy myself with pictures. I've started out with the more contemporary displays, most of which were smaller wall hangings instead of full size quilts.

There were patriotic ones.

And those dedicated to Texas.

Holiday ones.

And the traditionals.

Here are some closeups to show you the detail that goes into these pieces. When you're talking a full size quilt, you can just imagine the time that it takes to complete.

This was the "Best of Show." You have to appreciate the time and work that goes into this when you can see all the little pieces of fabric that come together as a work of art.

Lots of pretty fabric for sale.

As well as some baskets made in Africa!

So next time you crawl under your grandma's quilt and get all comfy and cozy, think of the tender loving care that went into that piece of art. Thank God it hasn't become a "lost" fact, it's alive and well.