Monday, August 27, 2012

Spotlight on Crypto-History (I was an extra!)

Hey There:

Over the weekend I participated in the taping of an indie project as an extra. As opposed to my participation in the taping of TLC's Randy to the Rescue, this time I had some camera time!

The film shoot was for a web series called "Spotlight on Crypto-History", in it the main character - Mark O'Bannon, author of The Dream Crystal - interviews people from the past. In this particular scene, he was about to interview George Washington Carver - portrayed by Extreme Rahim -  when an explosion interrupts everything!

My job was to be in the audience, scream, duck and cover my head because of the imaginary bomb. In this part of the scene only the back of my head was shot. Once that part was done, the director, Jimmy Diggs, writer of several episodes of Star Trek Deep Space Nine and Voyager, decided I should be in front of the camera.  I got on stage, kneeled next to George Washington Carver and my instructions were to fan him and check if he was alive. While two other actresses where crying over Mark's inert body.

Another scene shoot that same day was between the bad guys, who planted the bomb. This scene was shot in the alley behind Lestat's. In these pics the director, Jimmy Diggs, is giving the actors instructions about the scene.

"Spotlight on Crypto-History" is a web-series meant to promote the main project "HMS-Victory", a steampunk style story that involves important characters from the past, like Madame Curie and George Washington Carver, time travel and many more things the creators don't want me to reveal!

This project has been written, filmed and cast right at Lestat's Coffee House (3343 Adams Avenue, San Diego, CA 92116). I've seen countless production meetings, plot discussions and "Hey! You wanna be in a movie?".

The goal of having the web series is to create and audience and then launch a Kickstarter project to get funding for "HMS-Victory". As the website links are available I'll update this blog post, in the mean time you can see updates through Jimmy Digg's Faecebook page.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Chicano Park Mural Restoration Project

This is very exciting! The murals in Chicano Park are done! On 8/25 starting at 1 PM there will be Aztec dance, art in display, food and the murals. I have quite a few things already scheduled for this Saturday, not sure if I'll be able to make it, most likely will be there Sunday just to take pictures.

Official Chicano Park Day Website:

'via Blog this'

Thursday, August 16, 2012

California Missions - San Luis Rey de Francia

Hey There:

California's oldest buildings are the Missions, built by the Spanish Catholic Church back in the late 1700's and early 1800's. We have 21 missions from San Diego all the way to San Francisco, I aim to visit all of them and today I'll show you the Old Mission San Luis Rey de Francia.

oceanside, ca


1798 - Founded by Padre Fermin Lausen
1811 - Current church built - third in its location.
1833 - Secularized (Missions disbanded by Mexican decree)
1846 - Sold
1865 - Returned to Catholic Church
1893 - Rededicated

This Mission is located in Oceanside, CA, about a 30 minute drive from Downtown San Diego and while its not one of the biggest in California, there are several things to see, apart from the Mission itself.


On one side of the Church there is a cemetery that is still in use today, we saw some gravestones from the 1800's but many were contemporary. It is very nicely kept, very quiet....a place for rest.

mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

The Church itself is so beautiful and old, in fact, there is a sign at the entrance warning people in the case of earthquakes to get the heck out of there since its not safe. Currently there are fundraising efforts going on for seismic retrofit of the building, if this is not done the State of California will close the Church. Click here to find out more about it.

I don't take pictures of the inside of the Church, except on this occasion when I took a photo of the dome ceiling. I can't express the Colonial beauty inside the Church and since this is a historical building, everyone is welcome to come in and enjoy it.

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

This Mission is very active when it comes to spiritual retreats and from the cordoned off courtyard we could see some of the living quarters. Everything about the Mission inspires tranquility and reflection.

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

Outside of the Mission as we walked around we saw the oldest pepper tree in California, planted by Fr. Antonio Peyri with seeds brought by a sailor from Peru in 1830 and it still stands big and strong today. This pepper tree does not produce the edible kind of peppers, instead they are used to treat wounds and infections due to its antibacterial and antiseptic properties.

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

One of my favorite parts of the Mission was the laundry ruins, in the second picture you can see how close we were from traffic and civilization, but we could barely hear it. It truly felt like we were in the middle of nowhere.

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

old mission san luis rey de francia oceanside, ca

My absolute favorite thing in my two visits to this Mission? Picking tunas! To this day the prickly pears (tunas) we picked early September last year were the sweetest I've ever tasted. Even though we suffered with the tiny pricks from the cactus. But just look at them! The cactus were overflowing with them and we had the best time picking them. Although next time we will be better prepared clothing-wise.

In case you are wondering, here is a post on How to Eat Tunas and How to Cook Nopales.

old mission san luis rey de francia, oceanside, ca

old mission san luis rey de francia, oceanside, ca


California Missions - a Pictorial Tour (book)
Old Mission San Luis Rey de Francia site
Wikipedia site

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Afternoon Tea Party

Hey There:

Over the weekend I hosted an Afternoon Tea meetup event for the Geek Girls of San Diego. The original idea was to drink proper British tea in dainty flowery cups, sugar cubes, scones and have a nice conversation. In reality, we did all those things, except drink hot tea!

I have a one bedroom apartment and using every single chair-like thing around my place I could seat 15 people, spaced out between my living room and patio. I put up a make-shift canopy on my patio to guard against the sun and planned to have a fan too.

The day of the event - middle of August - was hot and muggy and I made the huge mistake of not editing the RSVP settings, so before I knew it, I had 18 people RSVP to the event! The day before the event I did warn them we would be playing magical chairs, what I didn't know then is that we would ALL be in my living room....forget the patio! Too hot!!

We had a great selection of pastries, while some were store bought we had a home-made peach cobbler and a Japanese pastry, as well as tiramisu, cookies, scones and cherries. Because it was so hot instead of offering British tea, we had water, freshly made lemonade and an awesome Peach Cool Brew Iced Black Tea. I can't say enough about that tea, we put four tea bags on a pitcher with room-temperature water and 5 - 10 minutes later it was ready to be served!

The event itself was a success, some of the ladies came in with very nice hats and dresses. As I mentioned we were very cramped and sitting in a circle but that made conversation easier, some times the ladies were talking in small groups and others we were all in one conversation. It was wonderful to see the interactions and hopefully new friendships blossom from this event.

I'm very sure this is the first of many Afternoon Tea events to come, who knows, we can have an Alice in Wonderland/Mad Hatter theme and I'm sure next time, we will get to use our cute little flowery cups!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

My Reading Corner

Hey There:

My dearest ambition is to become a professional reader, I have a plan to start proofreading, copy-editing and editing. This is part of my two-year plan, but I figured I should already go ahead and create my "office".

I have a great patio and while I was getting settled in the rest of the apartment, the patio was used mainly as storage. I would be working at my home office looking outside and wanting to enjoy the patio, but it just wasn't inviting for me, though my cat had no problem with it!

It took me several months to de-clutter, get rid of all the plants I killed, buy some patio furniture and now I use it every day!

I already had this chair but it was in the sun, so I barely used it. Now I have it in the shaded area and it's reclining so it's the best to relax and read for awhile at any time of day.

This chaise lounge and lights were bought at Ikea, the red cushion and astroturf are from Lowe's. This area gets a lot of sun, so it's been great to lie down at lunch time and try to even out the tan on my legs. So far my cats enjoy the patio more than I do, but at least now I have an inviting patio for me and my house guests.