(Image credit: the phone)

Posted by Ellen

About two weeks after this photo was taken, the Cuban national capitol building reopened following an eight-year renovation project.

The building, completed in 1929–during an era when Cuban dictators were, let's say, sucking up to the American governmen–is an exact replica of the U.S. Capitol and was used for the national congress. After the revolution, Castro repurposed it as an office building, most recently for the Ministry of Science and Technology.

El Capitolio will return to its original use April 12, when the Cuban national assembly convenes in the building to choose a new president. For the first time since the revolution, nobody named Castro will be in the running.

Posted by Ellen

Don't know these kids, just caught a glimpse in passing. One of them plopped himself down on a skateboard and hitched a ride through the airport behind the suitcase being pulled by the other kid. They could be brothers. I'm pretty sure they're the kind of kids that people call A Handful. Especially the one on the skateboard.

Posted by Ellen

You know what they say: yes, it looks impressive, but the fact is that Allen probably beats his niece two games out of three.

Posted by Ellen

This showed up the other day on the wall next to a parking lot in our (Seattle) neighborhood.

Posted by Ellen

Joe and his friend Beau pose for a picture last spring in Beau's new food truck, Local Roots, which plies the streets of Tuscaloosa serving an international menu that features locally grown foods.

Posted by Ellen

These papier-maché troll masks on display in Seattle's Nordic Heritage Museum were created by Norwegian-born Seattleite August Hansen Werner (1893–1980).

Although troll-themed masks were common articles of Norwegian folk art, these were different. Werner was a professional musician, an instructor at the University of Washington, and longtime conductor of the Norwegian Male Chorus of Seattle. He was also a painter and sculptor, and it is believed that he made these masks for operatic performances.

Posted by Ellen

Fixin to fly.

Posted by Ellen

There was a leetle, teeny bit of snow in Seattle, and then a taste of sun. Fine winter days.

But that was then; now, the snow has melted and it's raining hard, and predictions are that it will rain forever. It's easy to see why Lewis and Clark, after they spent a long, wet winter in the Pacific Northwest, judged their entire expedition a failure; this part of the world that they'd struggled so hard to "discover" was chilly and gray and mildewy and just plain unliveable.