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My husband and I , with our dog, Tate, moved to Buenos Aires, 8 years ago. Life has never been the same since ~ Back in the USA ... life is still not the same !
It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new.
But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful.
There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.
Alan Cohen
"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend.
Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read."
Groucho Marx
The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Road Less Traveled


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Robert Frost

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Winter Days

We still try to get to the park each day with Pup. It all depends on how he feels..
These are a few glimpses into Winter in Buenos Aires in our neighborhood. I love the people here, they are all wonderful ( well, almost all ) and even the ones who like to swing in trees in the dead of winter are pretty great.. or those wacky tourists who go on Roller Skate Tours .. we do not want to even think about what that would involve for me to attempt such a thing !




Having Green in the parks and Flowers sold on the corners, keeps things fairly cheerful around here, even on a very cold winter day.

Friday, July 29, 2011

If I Could Save Time in a Bottle


Happy Friday !
The sun is shining here, although it is cold.
But it is a beautiful day and I have high hopes for today and the next and the next being beautiful too.
Pup continues to be fairly well and comfortable.
If only I could save Time in a Bottle ...


Thursday, July 28, 2011

This and that

It is a beautiful day in Buenos Aires !
The sun is shining, it is not too cold and Pup woke up apparently pain free.
We were able to take a short ( very very short) walk and he is now resting.
I think , since I am unable to leave him alone , I will stay in and do some Balcony gardening.
I have discovered that plants grow fast and large here. It must be the heat/water/sun combo on my terrace because the Jade plant has become a Jade shrub and is working on becoming a Jade tree.
I am worrying about the amount of weight the balcony can take, it is 100 years old, after all.

Later, there might be photos of finished gardens. or just Pup lolling around, making the most of being waited on hand and paw.

Meanwhile, I am typing this with a pair of glasses on, with only one thingee over the ear.
For some reason, they are staying perfectly straight and I can see.
But this is a little ridiculous, I must leave the Pup here alone and go to the eyeglass store and tell them to do whatever they have to do but fast and get me a new pair of glasses and get back here fast.
I have no idea what style to get, mine are so old and nice , I never wanted to change them.
The large Mr Peepers kind of frames are not for me. I will look like a bug.
Little nerdy glasses with black frames ? What about something ultra cool and trendy ? But ....
what is the trend?
The answer to all of these questions, later ... chau ~




Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Waiting ..

Waiting for the vet.
Waiting to feel better.
Waiting to go to the park and sniff around.
Waiting for someone to do something with this hair !!



Sunday, July 24, 2011

Way better ....

So .... this isn't exactly Pup with a frisbee.

But compared to the frail state he has been in lately...
Today he walked to the park Twice !
and he has been eating food !! and smiling !!

This is way better than being able to catch a frisbee in the air ~



I know most of my friends in the US are cooking in ridiculous summer heat.
I wish you all could fly down here and wait for cooler weather to return.
It is sunny and bright and cool here, typical Winter in Buenos Aires.
You can wear a light coat and still get a sunburned nose, while walking in the parks and admiring the musicians and shopping in the Feria. . . while eating freshly made scones full of fruit from the Panaderia .. think about it ..

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Today


Yesterday is history.
Tomorrow is a mystery.
And today?
Today is a gift.
That’s why we call it the present.

Alice Morse

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Waiting

He was waiting for the furniture to be delivered, in his new home. ( 4 years ago)
He staked out this room, lay down and relaxed, his work was done.
He is resting now, relaxed and I wish I could freeze this moment in time.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A City Girl

Funny how life happens.
I used to dream of living in a city.
I dreamt of being a City Girl, after being a Girl from the South, a "country girl".
I was a California Girl .. then I finally got to live in New York City.
So the next thing I knew, I wanted to live in a house with a yard for the children and to have a dog.
We went at that all backwards !
We were still in the city and bought a Borzoi .. yes, a Russian Wolfhound.
There was never a sweeter , prettier girl.
She loved my husband and he loved her.
But then I got pregnant and had a baby. And it was more than I could do to take care of babies and dogs the size of horses and have a husband who worked an hour away.
So the sweet dog went to live on a farm with a man who would keep her in bones for life ( he was a butcher) and we went on to live in a variety of apartments until we bought a house in a small town where we had a yard, big trees, a private garden and there was room once again for a pup to come live with us.
Of course by then, it was just the husband and I , the kids had flown the coop .
So we got Pup.
He became my baby, my companion and my heart.
Then my dreams turned to more far off locations.
Wouldn't it be fun if we lived in London? I would dream aloud.
Having grown up on stories about my great -grandmothers family coming to the United States from England, my great- grandfather being Scottish, which was supposedly why my mom had dark dark hair and blue blue eyes and I was white blonde with blue eyes.
England and Scotland.
I imagined living in London, in a flat , near a park.
Or better yet, thanks to multiple Miss Marple seasons, I started to dream about a village, picket fences, thatched roofs ..
I wanted to live in a town with a name like Chipping Norton or St Marys Meade or High Wycombe.
Then one year, we were in London , it was my birthday.
My husband took me to Paris for the weekend ... taking the Eurostar through the "Chunnel" and spending the hours walking... from the hotel on the Isle St Louis, past Notre Dame, over the River Seine, up and down Blvd St Germaine and on and on .. for 2 days.
I developed a raving migraine and finally sputtered to a stop and had to sleep.
But that tiny taste was all it took, that fall we went to Paris for a couple of weeks, celebrating our anniversary. .. and every year after that for quite a long time.
Eventually , after the years went by and we took our yearly and sometimes twice yearly trips to Europe, we decided to sell our house and leave the Northeast.
We moved to Florida . . we moved away from there one and a half years later... to Portland, Oregon.
Then .... we decided to celebrate our anniversary one November by flying to Buenos Aires for a couple of weeks.
And the rest is history.
I got my French home. I got my French views.
I got the City life, I am once again a City Girl.
I am struggling to become bi-lingual .
Although there are days that I think Pup understands more than I do and some days I think Pup is easier to understand than I am.
My husband and I are great as a team, we supply each other with words.. " blah blah blah, what is the word for stove ? blah blah blah, what did he say? " and so we manage .
If I feel bad about not being in Paris, I console myself with the thought that we might eventually be able to spend months at a time in France, or Italy or the US or wherever..
Until then, I must remember to just look out the window at that view and remember , I am home now.
And Pup is content and my husband is happy, therefore, so am I.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Feeling a bit impatient ...


I am feeling a bit ... impatient.
There is an article in the New York Times about people not answering emails.
I skimmed the article because , to be frank, I have heard most of it before.
It tried my patience.
I find it boring, in a way, to read about other people not answering emails or sending them to people who don't answer.
How would these people deal with a day when not one single person sent them an email ?
Would they freak out ? would they start emailing everyone asking what is wrong ?
Or is it just the cool thing to say, oh I get so many emails I can't read them all ..sigh.. so many people email me all day .. I am so popular .. poor me ....

I use email as I would a phone these days, living on another planet from the people in my family, my old friends and friends that also live on other planets ( like the UK and France) .. Email has been a gift of sorts for me.

I have traveled quite a lot in the past few years.
Being able to contact anyone at any time from wherever I am, to wherever they are ( the baby boy in Nepal, the daughter in Brussels) is beyond any praise worthy words I can think of.

I don't work in an office and I don't have people/friends who send me things that are annoying. I have gotten "chain" mail once or twice but I just delete it and go on with the day and no one feels bad and I didn't have to be interviewed by the New York Times over how irritating it is to have people contact me by email.

I remember the days when there was no email.. yeah, back in the Stone Age when telephones, the sort that were hooked to the wall, were the means of communication.
If the phone rang late at night, you immediately were alarmed, why is someone calling so late??
If the phone didn't ring, you wondered why?
If you were on the phone, you thought someone else might be trying to call ..

If you had two teenagers in the house, the phone became an object to wage war over, a prize going to the owner of the cleanest room, or being a prize to dangle over their heads if you wanted them to do something for you .... say .. go to the store and pick up a carton of milk for me , please ?

I would be unhappy without email.
I might even think about not living so far from loved ones, if we were not able to be in contact so easily, so instantly.
So what if someone sends you a chain mail email... so what if someone sends you jokes or terrible photos ..
You know what ? I send my friends photos all the time.
What if they think they are terrible and I am annoying ?
I'll tell you what ... all they have to do is delete them.

Not like the Old Days when you had to worry about answering the phone because it might be someone you didn't want to talk to .. or a telemarketer .. then you had to
1- not answer the phone, just let it ring
2- let the machine pick it up .. how tedious
3- answer the damn thing and then hang up on the machine that is calling you !

I want to be more patient.
I was never patient.
I still have time.
I hope.

“Patience is the ability to end our expectations.”


Saturday, July 16, 2011


After a visit to the vet, where someone got a new bandage, day-glo in case he doesn't get enough attention already, we went to the park.There is a huge wonderful monument in the park, put there by the French, this is from Bastille Day ceremonies the other day.
And more good news...
What ? didn't I tell you the vet said Pup is better ?
That he is making new red blood cells and his anemia is better ? and the leg is almost all healed and today he was his old silly self at the park, he walked to and from the park twice plus to the vet.
This is the most he has walked since all the Bad Stuff happened.

So the Second Good News is that the Mall and Cinema in our neighborhood is almost ready to open, the cinema actually opened last night.
What thrills me is that they took an old mall that had a new 10 theatre cinema and gutted it and put in a gazillion shops and cafes and restaurants and count them, 3 McDonalds .. I am sure Starbucks will be there too .. but who cares about that ? The Cinema was left alone.
Imagine, they took a mall that covers a square block and gutted it but left the "basement" level, one flight down by escalator, exactly the same.
Which means that the seats in the theatre are the same ... this seems to be no big deal to some people but these seats are the sort that you had in a movie theatre many years ago.
Big high backs, velvet, cushy seats and arms and tons of room for long legs ..
I am muy contenta.
This week we are going to the movies !
Don't you just love Saturdays ? Sleeping late, not leaving the house until after noon and then ordering pizza or some take-out for dinner .. I still like Saturdays and Sundays, even though every day of the week is pretty much the same for us.

Friday, July 15, 2011

I Heart this ........

http://simplejaime.tumblr.com/

Frenchness , Harry Potter and Time

Over the past year or so, my husband and I have played with the idea of living somewhere else. I imagine from past trips , from my love of museums, music and old places, that Paris would suit me fine. Not to mention the food, fashion and how much the French like their dogs .. the Frenchness of life in Paris is so appealing ~

Frenchness summing up everything that I like about France .. not the bad stuff .. like high taxes, cost of living and ridiculous cost of housing.
Frenchness like this street, rue de Grenelle,where we rented an apartment one year and pretended that we lived there.
This was our neighborhood, Cafe Roussillon was "our" corner cafe, the fromagerie on rue Cler was "our cheese shop" .. after dinner at night, we would walk two blocks over and watch the Eiffel Tower twinkle ..until we scurried back to the warm apartment where we could continue to watch the twinkling from our bed.
But things have changed, I think.
I am unable to imagine only two of us on this adventure, when it should be three.
I have started wondering about living here forever, perhaps in another building but then, why ? this one is so nice.
Maybe I can change all the windows and block out the noise better, then I think it would be close to perfect.
Would a Paris apartment be that perfect ?
I like this street in the photo.
The three of us walk here and shop in our favorite Boulangerie, buying fresh buttery croissants, loaves of yeasty soft bread for the week, something sweet for tea.
I might not mind living in this area.
But then, Pup likes it just fine where we are .
So here we stay.

We went to see Harry Potter today.
We loved it.
I was sad , it was the last one.
It was great.
I saw that the vet had called twice while we were away ..
I thought there is no more bad news possible, it can wait until I get home.
I called when we got home and she was telling me something but so quickly that I thought I did not hear correctly ( and she was speaking English!) so I repeated it back to her.
More blood test results?
His red blood cells are regenerating ?
Yes, his bone marrow is active and he is rejuvenating red blood cells . . so in her words..
"We have more time with Pup " ...

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Every day is a Gift

It's a strange thing, but when you are dreading something, and would give anything to slow down Time, it has a disobliging habit of speeding up. ~
J.K. Rowling

This is the way we have to remember Tate, our sweet Pup, when the time comes when he thinks it is time to go. The doctors do not say how long we will have together but every day now is a gift.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Apologies


Please forgive me for the post that I have now removed, the one where I am overly tragic in public. I appreciate every sweet comment and all the kind words but I should not burden others with my grief.

The three of us walked to the park, one of us did everything he had to do and then we walked home. It has gotten very chilly out all of a sudden and we were all happy to scurry home to pots of hot tea and maybe a dog treat .. The vet will come visit later today.
As of right now, Everything is fine and we are thankful.

Anonymous, thank you , besos, C

Acensor

This is the door to the elevator in a building nearby.
Can you imagine ??
I swear, I would feel the need to get up in the morning and get all dressed up, to take the elevator downstairs to go to the market. Pup would have to be groomed at all times to ride in an elevator of such grandeur !
I daydream sometimes, about living in such a building.
Then I think of those modern , with amazing views, high rise apartments where everything is new and there are huge windows and terraces .. it all boils down to Old World Elegance vs New World Convenience ( with a view) ..
The view from our bedroom ( at the back of the apartment ) is the courtyard with trees , a huge hibiscus that blooms giant red flowers and stone walls, beyond which are ugly 1960s apartment buildings that should all be torn down. Not because they are broken but they are too ugly.
I fondly refer to them as Soviet Block apartment buildings. Ugly.. no matter what you do inside, your are walking into a large concrete bunker. Ugh.
Today is one of those days that makes me SO happy to be here in Winter. The temperatures will be in the 60's and the sun is shining.
I am planning on a bakery run and some balcony gardening, with a visit from the vet this afternoon.
Pup is not worse, he is a tiny bit better, we take what we can get these days.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Life


The most important things in life aren't things.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Monday .. Look at This Blog !




Happy Homemaker

My Monday Morning Look at This Blog is just what I need today. Frenchness !
An American Expat, living in London ( one of my dreams) going to France for a holiday ( dreaming, dreaming !!)

Go take a look, tell her hello, Enjoy ~

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Lazy Sunday

Another beautiful day , today was Voting Day .. I am hoping the current Mayor wins his re-election. That is the extent of my political chat.
We took Pup to the park, we walked and we talked and I took photos and then we came home.
And that is the extent of our day ... a perfect Lazy Sunday.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Perfect Weather

It is 9 de Julio, a big holiday here. The Weather was Perfect.
We walked through the parks with Pup.
It is good to still see all that green ..
Past the Argentine Automobile Association ...
The skies were blue, the sun was warm, the wind was cool, perfect outdoor cafe weather.

Perfect Walk in the Park weather ..

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Winters Day in Buenos Aires

Yes, this is winter.
Someone flew down from Up North for a bit of sun and relaxation.
Someone else found it more fun to play catch me and hide behind the shrubbery.
All in all, a beautiful day.



Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Missing .... the ocean

Know how long it has been since I have seen the ocean ?
Me, the little girl who played on the beach in San Diego , the girl who got sunburned on the beach in North Carolina, the girl who hung out on the beaches of Malibu, the woman who spent summers on Fire Island , the woman who whiled away the hot months in Montauk , the person who drove all the way from downtown Portland to Cannon Beach, Oregon for the day, just to see the ocean !!

It has been over 4 years.
It is like a dream, I remember it smells good, I remember the sound and the way your lips are salty when you kiss on a beach .. so that is good, at least I have good memories.
But really, this is Ridiculous !
I need to get me to a beach .. soon ..

In the meantime, it is freezing cold .. or at least I am freezing , but the sun is shining, Recoleta is being spruced up with the parks and gardens getting new flowers, paint on buildings and a new Cinema is being finished nearby.
If only I were not such an impatient person .. I want it all now.

Pup is doing great. He went with us today on the walk to the park, which turned into a walk to the French bakery, the fish store, the market and now .... he is busy napping.

All in all, a good day... but I still miss the Ocean !

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Coming to Buenos Aires ...


Eric Clapton

Ringo Starr

Bobby McFerrin

Tears for Fears

Red Hot Chili Peppers


and ....
wait for it ....

Megadeath !!

Have all my latent musical head banging genes come forth ?
Nawww...
I just have such fond memories of the days when my kids were listening to this music and actually years before that, I was listening to the Beatles and then Bobby McFerrin and Eric Clapton and now .... they are going to be in Argentina .
I know they have had Madonna here and Ozzie Osbourn was here not long ago... saw him at the cafe.
But reading this list of who will be here, made me wish my kids were here ...
I sort of miss the days when they would stay in their rooms and I would have to knock , be allowed in, then get to talk to them for a minute.
Sometimes I would sit on the bed and listen to something my son particularly liked ..
Never mind that he went on to have a job traveling and working with a band that had shows all over Europe and the United States and of course, this did nothing to convince him that he should stay home , near Mom and Dad and work and live ...
Nooooo, he had to see the world.
And so he did.
My daughter was more interested in the music and cute boys . That sort of thing.
At least she didn't run off with the band ~

Maybe if I tell them about these bands coming, they will come visit ..
I mean, really, Buenos Aires And Megadeath ?
oh, yeah, and Mom and Dad .

Monday, July 4, 2011

Monday .. Look at This Blog !

Happy July 4th, all of you in the United States !!
For the rest of us, Happy Monday.

I post photos on a website called Tumblr .. I found it by accident, I saw some photos and I was hooked !
Some of the photos are from various blogs that I follow and who are widely known, some are blogs just of photos reblogged from other sources.
So there is really no shortage of photos in Blog World.
I found this blog sometime back in the past and enjoyed the photos of cars .. I know, a girl liking photos of cars ?
Hey ! I grew up in North Carolina ..
I liked Corvettes and Mustangs and I fell hard for a boy who drove a re-built Austin Healey .. which in a romantically cosmic way happened to be a car that my husband also owned, when he lived in England.
Not only are the photos of the cars interesting, but they are in various settings that are interesting ... does anyone know what a Tuk tuk is ? There are tuk tuks in the blog too.
And interesting places, cool people and well, why keep talking about it ?
Go look at my Monday Look at this Blog


There is much more to look at besides cars ~


Sunday, July 3, 2011

Collecting moments

These are part of our "Frog collection " ... the one on the left and the one in the middle were the first , a friend found one in an antique shop in NYC , he bought the set and we bought one ( the tall one ) from him.
We found the second one in the same shop, then the little guy holding the crystal ball came later ... I have lost count now of all the frog items that we have and where they all came from.
It is a bit demented in a happy collector sort of way.

We always enjoy looking for particular things when we travel, it does help keep us focused when faced with a huge flea market full of treasures waiting to be found.
Frogs and mirrors were our obsessions .. well, obsession might be a strong word , but it works here.
I also like to collect paperweights, candlesticks and Asian art .
Blue and white pottery is also on my list.

Did I mention antique posters from various countries ?
So going shopping with us can be an experience, frogs, blue and white pottery, mirrors !

But when you stop and look around you, you see moments from our lives.
The painting my husband brought back from his first trip to Paris.
The poster we bought on my first trip to London.
Picture frames from our daughter. The ginger jar that our son gave us from Japan .. everything has a story behind it, everything has meaning and worth ... sometimes only to us but that is all that is necessary.

I also collect memories .
Sometimes I worry that mine will fail and they will all be lost.
So I am considering writing everything down, not for anyone else to read but for me to sit down one day and lose myself in sweet memories of far away places and remember the love and joy I have been so lucky to have enjoyed in my life.

I think I might have to start collecting pretty notebooks, to keep my collection of memories in. The notebooks can go into a pretty chest, or I can collect pretty boxes to put the notebooks in .. you see where this is going, don't you ?

My grandmother would call me a packrat .. but she collected memories too.
So you see, I am following a family tradition, being a collector ..

Saturday, July 2, 2011

July .. Winter .. Confused ?

It is, at times like this, that I feel so very far away.
Away from "home", family and things that have been a part of our lives since birth.
Like the 4th of July.
Of course, July has a 4th in it here too, but it is just another day. Actually, here ... the big day is the 9th of July.
9 de Julio- Independence Day !
There will be fireworks and everyone will celebrate but it is cold. It is a very cold winter so far. I think records are being broken, even as I type.
We have had no snow but I don't think it would take much for it to happen, just a little humidity. Sure puts the kabosh on any thoughts of a barbeque ! a family picnic ! sitting out in the park watching the fireworks !
Better idea , sitting around the candlelit table and making a toast to Argentina !

Certain members of the household are just happy they are up and out in the fresh air and able to have a little fun. Even with a bandage , it is still fun to go to the park, (if only mama would stop taking pictures every single minute !! and the ladies in the park come and give away free kisses and sometimes people want to give food, but of course, mama puts a stop to that too ! )

I play with the idea of moving once in a while.
I want more views, more green outside the windows and I would love it if I could not hear traffic so well.
I have some buildings picked out but who knows if anyone will ever move out and if the apartments are affordable .. real estate is not a bargain here.
I bounce between wanting another French style building with the super high ceilings and all the molding , to wanting something modern and new and loft-like.
Then I see a house in the New York Times and wonder how I might like living in the woods in a Center hall Colonial.
We are about to have elections here again.
The mayor ( I like him) has put more police on the streets, especially in areas in town where tourists visit or where crime is just out of hand. I see more police each day and this is a good thing.
It is so cold. Our little heater in the bathroom is great, I might run out and buy a few more just to feel secure.
Monday the heater repair man will be here.
Then I am going coat shopping.
Of course, I used to see coats all the time, but didn't think about needing one, now I want one and cannot find anything I like.
I found something, it is from Italy, I have to go back Monday and try it on, will I still love it ? or was it a momentary affection ? We will see.
I would rather be shopping for boots or a new handbag.
Do I want an Orange bag ? Do I want a Blue bag ? these are the decisions I need to make.
Yes, important decisions are my speciality.



Friday, July 1, 2011

Freezing , Films , Food, Fin de Semana

It is freezing here ! I can't feel my nose ! or my toes .. Dr Seuss would have said the same thing if he was here.

We went to see the Woody Allen movie, Midnight in Paris.
It might be considered a mistake by some ... now I cannot stop thinking about Paris... living in Paris ... the food.. the city .. the style .
The scenes of the Flea Market made me groan.
The shots of those cobbled streets in Montmarte made me want to dash out and start packing.

Then we came home to a lonely Pup and we scurried down to the park .. where we were so cold that even Pup was anxious to get home.

We had to go out to buy a space heater for the bathroom until the repairman comes.
It never fails, your heater will fail on the coldest night or week of the century.
We got something that looks and feels quite flimsy but the thing heats up instantly!
We have to be sure we don't melt the toilet or something.

I guess the weekend will be spent indoors, as much as possible, with brief dashes to the park with Pup and perhaps a wee bit of shopping and maybe dinner out .. although I really do like to cook when it is very cold.
All of those recipes for Warm You Up dinners that I have saved from living in the Northeast US ..
Or we will just go to our favorite bistros and cafes and have hot soup with an egg in it, followed by pasta putanesca or some fresh fish .. or just while away an afternoon reading La Nacion ( it takes all afternoon to be able to read an article in Spanish for us ), drinking cups of hot strong cafe con leche with little manzana crumbles ..

It had better not stay cold too long, my clothes will mysteriously grow smaller.



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Expat blogger

living in Argentina