Hi, I’m Colina, Señor Estrella de la Colina to be exact. My friends call me Hilly. Brian isn’t around right now, neither is Edie. El Fantasma is gone too. That’s why I’m doing the writing today. Brian and Edie are my buddies. We’re close enough that Brian is trusting to me to do the talking this time. He said if I did a good job, I could get more rides in El Fantasma and another sitting in Studio Bird. Well, I jumped on that like a chicken on a June bug or is that an Ecuadorian Hillstar on a Hershey Bar? Either way, you can see I’m quick on my feet and a fine decision maker. I threw in my lot with a couple of Gringos and a truck called The Ghost.
I live up in the high sierra, right on the backbone of the Andes Mountain Range. It’s a beautiful place and usually rather windy. I love to go after nectar and that’s the main reason I took a place in the area. The lagoons dotting the paramo-studded landscape offer a plentitude of Chuquiragua around their edges. I have to watch how much nectar I sip to protect my girlish figure. Now, I am not fat but I am indeed sassy. I knew you could see it in my face when I introduced myself. Sometimes, my pointy beak is just so pointy, it pries into the business of others. Then I get sassy and everybody else gets mad. That’s why I live alone, off the beaten path and about two miles up. I’m a better bird when there are no other birds to deal with.
Yep, there I was minding my own bird business for once when here they came, riding high in The Ghost. I was just getting ready to start sipping that flower nectar when the Gringa scared me off by waving her camera around too much. Well! After a few seconds, I buzzed right back over to straighten her out but the Gringo told me that was a really bad idea. He seemed to speak with the voice of experience, as I cocked an iridescent purplish-blue head to his words. He suggested instead that we buddy up, you know…go into cahoots with one another. He said I could rest my tired wings and he’d take me to a new lagoon up the road, said there were many flowers and much nectar in that area. I turned my feathered noggin and peered in. It looked dark and cool inside the truck. He showed me a photograph on the camera screen. It was of yours truly and he had just made it when I was looking quite handsome…and very sassy! I flew into the back seat to hear the rest of the deal. I knew I was getting into debt being the recipient of such extravagant offers. But, he made it so easy for me. Seems all Brian and Edie needed was for me to fly on over to Cuenca High Life and get the editor, David Morrill, up to speed on their goings-on. He asked me to make some Facebook posts too so all their buds could be in the loop.
Brian wanted me to tell you that he and Edie are going to be out of pocket for a little bit. Seems they might be somewhat “off the grid” gathering some new photographs and stories to share with all the gang. I don’t think that’s all they’re doing but Brian is a little tight lipped and doesn’t tell a lot of details. I probably ought to follow his example and keep my sassy beak shut much more than I seem to be able to. Anyway…I digress.
Brian and Edie wanted me to tell you guys that they’ll miss you all. Brian appreciates all the support you afford him in his photography and his writing. He loves sharing with all of you and is thankful for a chance to do so. In his sixth year here, life in Ecuador is great and getting greater by the day, he says. I can see that he and Edie are very much in love, very happy with each other and their lives. Me?! I can’t wait for those new photographs and stories. And, of course there’s that complimentary sitting in Studio Bird…where Brian will undoubtedly see to it my plumage is shown in all its splendor and glory!