Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Follow The "Plastic Brick" Road-Part 3

Continuing with my journey down the road to "Lego Land"...

For me, one of the most interesting aspects of the history of the United States is the 1960's space race, specifically NASA's Apollo program. Even more specifically, I love the Saturn V rocket. The propulsion vehicle that took our astronauts from earth to the moon.

So the Lego kit I was looking to buy late summer of last year was kit # 7468. It has models of 3 Apollo program space vehicles: A Saturn V rocket, command/service module , and a lunar excursion module. 

It was discontinued for commercial sale. So I had to get it from Ebay; but it would come at a hefty price. 

I began to try to win one of the many auctions. I was outbid at the last minute on at least a dozen of them before I realized I was going to have to increase my maximum bid if I wanted to win. 

Finally after about 2 months of watching many auctions get away from me I won the Saturn V Lego kit at a price that I choose not to reveal here. 

My "victory" happened in late September, after my birthday so I would have to put the kit away until December so  "Santa' could bring it to me. So 3 months later on Christmas morning I opened my most treasured Lego possession. 

As of the writing of this post I have yet to assemble the components  But when I complete the construction of all 3 vehicles, I'll post a picture in a place I'll mention a bit later. 

The next step in my Lego adventures came in the 3rd week of November. At the beginning of October I started working 
again. I'd been "between jobs" for about 6 months. 

My new job was at a call center doing basic trouble shooting over the phone for people who have a contract with a national electronics service company. 

After moving from the classroom to on-the-job training and then to working on the call center floor I discovered something about my new job. Because it tends to be a bit routine, agents who worked on the phones were allowed to bring things to have things at their desks to help them pass the time. 

I observed that my co-workers brought with them things like: cards, puzzle games, and even paperback books. I even heard someone say that at one time there was a guy who used to bring Legos. 

Hearing that I decided that I this was an opportunity for me to finally start using the 450 piece Lego set I bought back in August. 

Upon opening the container I found out that there were instructions included in the set. They were step by step guidelines on how to build at least half a dozen different objects and scenes using different combinations of bricks and accessories in the kit. 

I started out just making buildings. The first one I made, a church, was really something I was proud of. I built it from the ground up; complete with a cross on the front, pews and a pulpit inside. 

Not everything I built turned out the way I envisioned it when I started. My attempt to build a friendly robot turned out to be more a maniacal looking robotic rabbit.  

When I suffered a case of temporary of creative block I started building the things in the instruction booklet

My favorite of them was the helicopter. 

Soon after constructing a "Happy Thanksgiving" in block letters while working on Turkey day, I started creating things having to do with Christmas including: Santa Claus and a snowman. 

Because they are directly from my imagination, I am very proud of them as well. They are only a few of the multiple Lego creations I built over the last months of 2012. 

Sometime in December while Christmas shopping I discovered a line of Lego products that were just what I was looking for. They're under the name "Lego Creator." 

The premise of this series is that the blocks in the sets can be used to build any of 3 different models. There are a lot of these sets available. I have already gotten a few of the smaller kits and really like the designs that you can build with them. 

I'm not going to show you any pictures of these "Creator" sets in this post. Instead, if you want to see most of my Lego projects, you can go to my Facebook page and find the photo album entitled "My Legos". 

It will contain all the pictures I've taken of all my Lego projects since I started building them. 

It should be on my FB page soon after this post is published. If you are not one of my FB friends just send me an invite. I'll accept it and you can see all what I've been having fun building. 

Finally, to bring you up to date on what's going on with my Lego world. Believe it or not it brings the "Plastic Brick" road back full circle to the Lego store. No, not the one in Chicago but the one Nashville. It's in the Opry Mills Mall. I found it on yet another one of my December Christmas shopping trips. 

When I walked up to the front door of this specialty store that's just an hour of away from my front door, I'm not sure but I think I just might have heard angels singing. 

I can get many of the "Creator" sets that are on my want list as well as buy individual pieces in bulk. At the back of the store there's a wall of bins filled with bricks and pieces of various shapes, sizes, and colors. 

A customer can take a small store supplied bucket (about 8 inches high and 3 inches in diameter) and fill it up with as many bricks or accessories as they, purchase it and take it home, bucket and all.  

As of this post I have filled that bucket twice. I've got quite a few bricks that are not part of a kit. 

I'll continue to update my Lego photo album on Facebook. With the Creator sets I have waiting to construct including the Apollo set and one that can be built into any of a trio of dinosaurs. 

So that's where I am in my journey down the "Plastic Brick" road. Legos are part of this 52 year old man's world for the foreseeable future. 

Say what you will about me and my new toys. But they help me learn about and express the creative nature God included when he built me. 

For those who wish to harshly judge me and my enthusiasm for this hobby, let me paraphrase a quote used by "Old Man" Marley in the church scene in one of my favorite Christmas movies, Home Alone: 

You can be a little too old for a lot of things but you're never too old for Legos. 

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