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Weekly Photo Challenge: Silhouette Redux

May 26, 2013 – Day 674

WordPress, over the weekend, announced their topic for this week’s photo challenge and it is “silhouette“.

WordPress has done this theme before (hence the word redux in my title) and I answered that challenge with this post.

For this go-around, I am taking us back to our family’s trip to Sillustani which I wrote about earlier (in yet another response to a Weekly Photo Challenge).

Sillustani, located near Lake Titicaca in Peru, is a burial ground that pre-dates the Incan Empire. Instead of tombs dug into the ground, the Colla people (those that built Sillustani) created tower-like structures called chullpas where the dead were interred.

For my response to this week’s topic of silhouette, I gave you the tallest of those chullpas taken from a distance.


Completely by accident did I catch that pillar of diagonal light that cuts through the chullpa and it oddly reminds me the “Pale Blue Dot” photograph made by the Voyager I spacecraft in 1990.

No Fooling April First News Items

April 1, 2013 – Day 619

While the rest of the Internet was in stitches over Google’s announcement that they were shutting down YouTube or the tweets from NASA’s rover Curiosity saying it was fed up with eating dust on the Red Planet, I found my giggles leafing through the pages of the April 1 edition of the Peruvian newspaper, El Comercio.

None of these pair of items were meant as April Fool’s joke….I hope.

Item Number One proves that even though I am physically over forty years of age, my mental age sometimes borders between six and nine.

El Comercio had an advertisement for a the second anniversary of a business seminar entitled “Programa de Especializacion para Ejecutivos”. The name of the seminar is not what sent me into snickers, but it was the unfortunate (at least for the English speakers) acronym that the seminar’s name created.

This program is #1 in my books

This program is #1 in my books

At least it wasn’t an ad for the “Programa para Organización de Ortodoncia”.

Item Number Two proved to me that it’s not just high schoolers in the United States who are deficient in international geography (the latest hand-wringing can be seen here). The Monday edition of El Comercio ran a graphic illustrating the nations that possessed nuclear weapons. Below is a snippet of that graphic listing some of the usual suspects in red (e.g. United States, Russia, India, China, etc.)

Who's Got the Bomb?

Who’s Got the Bomb?

The lower-left corner of my snippet shows (correctly) that Francia (France) is a member of the N-Bomb club.

However, the line from “Francia” doesn’t exactly terminate in that Gallic nation. Instead, as shown in detail below….

Donde esta El Torre de Eiffel?

Donde esta El Torre de Eiffel?

…the illustrators at El Comercio appear to want to grant Spain entry into the world of nuclear weaponry.

Well, nobody’s perferct.

Outlet of Frustration

Day 532 – January 4, 2013

Summer in our corner of Peru means it is time for the mosquitoes to come out. The little critters south of the Equator are not the tan buggers I am accustomed to from our time spent in Virginia. These Peruvian examples from the family Culicidae are small, black, and emit a high-pitched whine that keeps the family up at night.

For the past several weeks, we have relied on a device that plugs into the wall to scare off the mosquitoes. One inserts a small tablet into the device. The device heats up courtesy of being plugged into the wall and the heat causes the table to disseminate its anti-mosquito scent.

I’m sure the folks at Raid have a better way to describe it, but they can use the comment section of this blog to let me know.

This device has been working relatively well but the tablets are only good for one night. So, I decided to purchase another product that claims to work up to 45 nights. Here it is…

Anti-mosquito product sold in Peru

This device has a vial of mosquito repellent that is also dispersed by having the device plugged into an outlet. However, I noticed a slight flaw in my plan after I brought the device back from the local grocery store. Look back up at the picture above and note the horizontal configuration of the plug. Now look below and note the configuration of this outlet, which is how all the outlets of our house look.

Outlet in Peru

A horizontal plug combined with a vertical outlet result in this…

Mosquito controller placed in outlet incorrectly

…which also equal a spillage of anti-mosquito liquid.

I grant you that this leakage of whatever this compound is pales in comparison to the Exxon Valdez or the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico, but a high concentration of this anti-bug juice is not a pleasing odor.

I was, as you could surmise, quite frustrated over this incompatibility of plugs and outlets. When my lovely wife came home, I shared with her my frustration by showing her the horizontal configuration of the device and the vertical configuration of the outlets.

She took the device in her hand and twisted the plugs so that they were now vertical, like so…

Mosquito controller with turned outlet

I’ll be honest here. I had no idea electrical devices could do that or that there would even be a need for plugs to rotate. With the configuration problem solved, the device is in the wall scaring away all the little mosquitoes.

That doesn’t mean that I still didn’t feel like this when I saw my lovely wife reorient the plug…

Picard facepalm

Weekly Photo Challenge: Surprise

Day 486 – November 19, 2012

It was a surprise to wake up on this Monday and be serenaded by a cacophony of trilling alarm clocks courtesy of the avian septet seen below.

Parakeets on roof in Peru

Birds on a cold tile roof

They were surprised when I gave them my critique of their warbling and shooed them away.