Monday, August 27, 2012

Chris Konstantino

When I was 21, I was dating my husband and he took me to New York City for St. Patrick's Day.  On the evening of St. Patrick we went to a bar on Times Square, I think it was called Smith's.  We were going to have a drink and people-watch and possibly meet interesting Irish characters.  My husband spotted an old man, sitting alone, having a drink and he was sure the old man was Irish.  But he wasn't.  He was actually a Greek/Macedonian, he was from the same parts as my grandpa and was about the same age as my grandpa.  Chris and I became good friends, exchanged addresses and telephone numbers and spoke a couple of times during the year.  The next year before St. Patrick's day I sent Chris a letter telling him to meet us at the same bar on the night of St. Patrick.  And we met again. We had a drink or two that night.  We spoke once or twice on the phone during 2002.  After that we exchanged Christmas cards and I just found one as I was going through some shoe boxes of cards.  There is no date on it, and I can't quite remember when it was sent.  Maybe 2005 or so.  I can't remember the last time I heard from Chris, but it has been several years at least.
This morning I decided to call the number I used to have for him.

Me: Hi I am looking for Chris Konstantino.
Voice (in an East Asian, middle east accent): Who?  What's the name?
Me: Chris Konstantino.  He used to live there in unit
Voice: Oh my Gosh!  Chris Konstantino!!!!  He's been gone, long time, maybe 10 years ago.
Me: 10 years, couldn't be.
Voice: Yes, he checked out, long time.  His health wasn't good, he couldn't breathe, he was on oxygen.  He had to go, you know.....
Me: Are you saying he just moved out, or he is gone as in he passed away?
Voice: No he moved, but I tell you he was sick so I don't know.  He may be in a nursing home, but that was long time ago.  He was sick.  You are a relative you need to find him.
Me: I am not related, no.  He was a friend.  He was where my grandpa was from, and he was about the same age. I didn't think he had family so I used to write him sometime, you know for Christmas and such.
Voice: oh yeah, yeah.  I don't mean to break your heart, but he may be gone.  His health, I tell you when he left......yeah it wasn't good.  If you find him let me know OK.
Me: I will, thank you. Bye.

So how do you find someone that you only have a name for and an address that is no longer current?  I am not sure of exact age, 70+ I think.  White Pages or didn't give me much.  I have a scribble in my address book of a friend he had in Colorado with a phone number.  I called the number but it's been disconnected. 

Thursday, August 23, 2012


60/40 is a type of solder that I like a whole lot better than 50/50.  From a chemical standpoint these two differ in the proportion of tin/lead they each contain.  From my standpoint 60/40 flows better, sets in quicker and shinier.
50/50 is cheaper, so I started with that because I needed practice and didn't want to spend a whole lot of money.  I struggled with it a bit and kept thinking I am doing something wrong, until I met again with my friend Josie, who taught me how to solder in the first place.  I discovered that it's my solder and not me doing something wrong.
And here I am working on some stuff for a crafty party this Saturday.  The theme of the party is 'Wish you were here' so I used an old airplane paper ticket to embellish these charms.  They are ready to be soldered in the picture below.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Disappointed amateur mechanic

That was me today, a disappointed amateur mechanic.  My car has been sitting on my driveway for the last two months.  It was overheating at first.  When that problem disappeared on its own, one day I noticed bunch of wire looking stuff hanging from the bottom of my car near the front passenger tire.  I thought I picked up something during driving, but it didn't take long to discover that it was my serpentine belt.  My car died as I parked one night coming home from work. That was two months ago.  Since then my car hasn't moved, my battery dead, unable to recharge itself without the missing belt.

My dad usually comes to my rescue in situations like this one, but this time for various reasons it hasn't worked out that way.  After trying to get a schedule worked out with one of my neighbors who offered to help, today we got the belt on with the help of my other neighbor.  I had oil and grease under my nails when it was all done.  I felt good!!!  I left to go to work using my husband's car, while the battery was plugged in and charging on my car.  I was happy, I was looking forward to having my own car again. 
But all that was short lived.  My husband informed me that he tried to start the car while I was at work and it was smoking.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Coffee machine

Here is something that melts my heart and makes me look forward to a time when my son is old enough to build real things that are functional.  He had noticed that I drink coffee in the morning (just a cup a day) and he made me a coffee machine out of legos.  Sweet, no?!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Maggie's vehicles

She's been drawing again, my little artist daughter has been drawing cars.  They look more like campers than cars, but she calls them cars.