Senor and Linda Lou have been in Pueblo Alamos, Sonora, Mexico for 10 years.
Every day brings a new discovery.
They are still working on the casa............Senor says, it won't be long.........but Linda Lou says, it won't be long until what..............stay tuned to find out what's next.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Senor has Left the Building

This morning's early sky as I was leaving for the soccer track....a little bit blurry, but then so were my eyes at 6:30am.

I have been told by senor that I am making capitals not, okay, I get that. I am making what you see in the photo below, the square and round pieces that are in between the roof and the column. The first one I made fell apart.
He says I should go ahead and make them first thing in the mornings if I can..................

So, I made another one yesterday and unveiled it this morning when I returned from the track. You can see it in the photos below. It is still all in one piece.

Of course, Senor made wood forms for me to use. The forms are screwed together for easy removal.
Here is how it all works.
I place the square form on top of the black plastic. I center the bowl in the middle and drop in the big rock. Then I go out to the stable and the work area nearby. I get 3 shovels of fine sand (that I have put through a wire grate over a bucket to get out the bigger rocks and pebbles). I toss that in the wheelbarrow. I go in the stable and get 2 half shovels of cement (don't ask me why I don't just get one full shovel's worth, this is my routine).
I toss that on the sand in the wheelbarrow. I mix it up a little and then spray it with the hose. Then I mix it for a long time with a trowel and add more water to get the consistency of cooked oatmeal. Then I take the wheel barrow to the black plastic and with a trowel I start filling in all the space around the green bowl. Then I tamp it all down so the water will come to the top. Then I hit the sides of the boards with a hammer to get out the air bubbles. Then with the trowel, I try and smooth it all down so it's nice and shiny.

Then I put on the second board and do that all over again and cover it with a tarp when I am finished.

I can promise you that it is about the most boring thing I have ever done in my life............taking apart the whole thing is difficult because I have to unscrew all the forms, and then, I get cranky as I know I will have to screw them all back together to make the next one.......... I have to eventually make ten capitals, only one a day because we only have one you remember when I thought I would have to make 800 placas? I really should not be complaining.
However, I will say I am in awe of senor's abilities to make all these forms. He spends alot of time at it, and so much time cutting the round circles and other details with his jigsaw. In fact, he burned out the motor on his jigsaw making another round form I will be using for something else when I finish the capitals.
So, he took off this morning to go to Navajoa to find a new jig saw.
After he left, I thought to myself, what if I don't make a capital today? Then, I thought to myself, senor will have a fit.
But I don't have to do it right away, do I?..........i called KD and Ian, just to chat....... made some oatmeal for Umberto............... looked at the bread machine I bought at the Tucson Goodwill for $3.95 and realized it doesn't have a paddle....................... tried to find a venezia steam wand online...................tried to find a bread paddle online................looked at oil cloth online.............looked at some flikr photos by my friend toni's husband.......ran out to see who was going by on about 10 horses..........combed the cats.............turned the compost pile.....checked my etsy shop.........checked the glasspondstudio website.............
Suddenly it was noon.
While I was watching a bright red cardinal flitting through the yard, I realized senor could be back at any time and I have done................nothing.
I decide to begin. I check the thermometer. Eighty one, in the shade. Maybe that is why he says do it first thing in the morning.
I get everything ready and Umberto comes over just like he did yesterday when I was making one and tells me again that I have to use wire inside the capital and outside to hold it together. I try to tell him that is why we have a form, so we don't have to tie barbed wire around it to hold it all together. He goes over to the fence and points to the barbed wire and then points to the capital, says............ mas fuerte con alambre (more strong with wire)................he pantomines the capital overhead, it falling to pieces on his head as he jumps up and out of harm's way.........I just spread my fingers, palms up and try and tell him..............senor digas eso, este (senor says this one, this way (or something like that)).....he shakes his head and shrugs and says.....alambre........again and walks off to go back to work.
By now, my cement is already turning to concrete, but I am too lazy to go and remix it. Most of the water is gone and it is more like uncooked oatmeal.
But because I am already bored with the project, I scoop and fill and tap, scoop and fill and tap.
The whole process, without counting the conversation with Umberto, has taken two and a half hours of my afternoon.
And then, suddenly, I have inspiration.
A little water has surfaced from the dry oatmeal and it is smooth and shiny like glass. I want to make an imprint of some sort. Inside the casa I go to the glass shelf where I am making, at senor's request, about 250 little dichroic glass tiles for the bathroom. They will go in one line around the shower stall......(i am extremely flattered that he likes my glass tiles so much that he wants to display them in our casa, and fortunately, it is a project I love doing).
I take one little tile out to the capital and press it gently into the cement.
As I cover up the form with the tarp, I think to myself, that really wasn't so bad afterall........


Steve Cotton said...

I sent an email to your AOL account.

1st Mate said...

Your tiles are so pretty, they're going to look like jewels in your bathroom. Flickering in the candlelight...

Glenn Ian Huntington said...

Enjoy reading about a typical day. Your day sounds a whole lot better than than my typical work day here in the states - talk about things you'd rather not do!!! (Ha!) Can't wait to move down there! The tiles are beautiful!