My photo
My husband and I , with our dog, Tate, moved to Buenos Aires.. 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.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Saying Goodbye


Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Loss

There is going to be a break in my posting for a little while.
 I will be back.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

We are here ~

There is a house at the top of the hill.
It is beautiful and always pristine. No leaves have been allowed to stay more than 10 minutes on the lawns, no twigs or sticks linger in the grass, even the birds seem to be very tidy.

These creatures, great and small, live next door to the perfect tidy house. 
You will notice, they keep their pasture quite neat and clean also. 
These are the neighbors I have to keep up with ?? !
And of course, there is a stone wall I love. 
I have the tiny baby 2 stone high version.
But mine is growing. 
It will never be this large but it will gather stones and become more of a stone wall than it is now. 
Now it is just a nice place for the chipmunks to play. 
Which is not a bad thing.
Ever see chipmunks play? 
Adorable.
Such is life in the country.
I am still in shock.
I looked at the shoes I had stacked neatly in my closet.
All city shoes. Beautiful suede lace up  things that are being shown in fashion magazines at this moment.
Mine are hiding in a box, terrified I will take them out and make them walk on something other than a city street.
At the same time, all my big city handbags are clamoring for me to take them out and let them have some fun ... they want to Carry Things.
I hate to tell them, I no longer carry things.
I just put them in the car.
I drive home now.
No more walking 20 blocks to pick up   croissants and then to the fish market for some salmon then to the produce market for the most perfect red tomatoes that I have not found here yet ...
Yes, I am in farm country and I cannot find a good Argentine tomato.
Go figure.
But there is time to discover the right places that sell the things I want.
We are still decorating and buying furniture, I need the right light fixtures .. apparently my Argentine chandeliers will not work here and I think my ( lazy) electrician will not wire them and get them to work. He says it cannot be done.
But the electrician in Buenos Aires, made my USA lamps work there ...  hmmmm.
Tomorrow we will hop in the car and go to some farm stands and buy ... farm things.
And stop in a cafe somewhere and have coffee and marvel that we are here ..


Thursday, October 17, 2013

No Worries

My mother said that I come from a long line of Worriers.
My grandmother was a Champ. I do remember that.
I always thought my mother should worry a little less or at least about things that were important and not what the neighbors thought or how late I stayed out on a date.
I mean really.

I have two children.
I worry about them both.
When things are good, when things are bad , when I don't hear from them, when I hear from them ..
I worry about the weather, the yard, the house, the trees.. oh man, I am beginning to worry about trees.

I don't often worry about my husband.
Partly because he is invincible and it is his job to be The Strong One.
That means I shouldn't worry, he will.
But he never carries on like I do .. about worrying.

He might be a little more quiet than usual, but that is sometimes hard to spot.
Because, you see, I ... the chatterbox, the outgoing huggy touchy feely one, married the quiet , serene and reserved one.
We are such a Perfect Match I cannot tell you.

Lately things have been sort of upside down.
I have been worrying about him.
I also worried about the trees and the bees.
Yes, it is cold out and there are still wasps outside my bedroom windows that look like the King Kongs of Beedom.
And they want in.
So far, I have foiled all attempts and there are bee bodies lying out there to prove it.

The wind was blowing the other day.
We had a bit of rain.
The next morning there was no grass, no garden, just brown needles ... inches thick, on an acre of land.
If it were snow, we could have had sled rides.
But it was pine needles and they are close to impossible to blow or rake up.

So we gave in and called the sweetest man who came equipped with the machinery and muscle and strong back to spend 2 days here cleaning up leaves , needles and debris.
In our garage right now are about 20 bags full of leaves for the town to pick up.
But but .... we have to get them out to the street on pick up day ...  I will worry about that tomorrow.

Today was one of those golden days that all worries were vanquished, all work was finished, all small negative thoughts were banished and everything is good.
No worries.
No frowns.
No tears.
Just smiles.
No worries.


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Colors





The days are too beautiful to stay in and be online.
The leaves in the yard are multiplying faster than bunnies.
The skies are an amazing blue with an occasional white fluffy cloud.
The sun shines through the gold leaves and the world glows gold.

The idea that it will all be bare and cold and snowy is weird .. not really able to picture it.

For now, we will enjoy each day, each minute and appreciate the place, the time and each other.




Saturday, October 12, 2013

Autumn Days



It is Saturday.
It is silent outside.
Birds are quiet, chipmunks are quiet, no one is mowing their yard , no dogs are barking, there are no cars honking, actually there are no cars .. today it is greatly appreciated.

We are having our First Autumn in NY after many many *around 10* years and I have to say that it lives up to all my best memories.

Things could be less hectic and we could be allowed to worry less, have nothing on our minds but that will come along again soon. In the meantime, my husband and I are marveling every day at how beautiful it is here .

There is this golden light .. it comes through the trees in the morning, the trees with yellow leaves and the yellow leaves are on the ground and everything has this sunshiny golden hue.
There are plenty of evergreens so we figure we will have some green around us once the trees are bare and the last of the Autumn leaves have been raked and piled and blown and bagged and carted away.

I can see the farm fields back behind our property, separated from us by ancient pines and glowing golden each morning. Deer are seen there sometimes, they know what that sign that says Posted means.
A neighbor walking her dog one day, stopped to compliment our work, the transformation of the house and grounds and to warn me that there are ... are you ready ? .... coyotes, foxes  and bears in the woods/fields behind our home, as well as deer and other non-meat eating creatures.
Coyotes, Foxes  and Bears .. oh my !!

I will be sure to keep any pets that we get close to home, safe inside at night and forget about putting a dog house out there .. sheesh ! and I was just worried about snakes and bees  when we moved here !

Thanksgiving is on its way.
This means children coming, not enough bedrooms but plenty of love waiting for them.
Menus being planned, activities, excitement ... it has been 10 years since we have all been together in one room ...  (that is the thing about travel and living abroad, you lose some things while you are gaining others)
Lucky us, we will  make up for lost time.

Now I must .. really .. must ... stop drinking coffee and wandering around on the internet and start my day .. where is the rake ?


Thursday, October 10, 2013

Habits

"Habits die hard " and I am here to say Amen to that !

Every afternoon I want to go to a cafe and sit and sip coffee or tea and have a cookie or some nice little baked goody and people watch, chat with my husband, chat with the owner of the cafe and soak in the atmosphere and wonderfulness of what is outside those windows.
Buenos Aires.
As much a "cafe society" as Paris ever was.
No matter where you go, there is at least one cafe on a block .. if the weather is vaguely warm and not raining, chairs are outside and people will be sipping coffee ( black, very black) and nibbling on a scone or some sweet pastry or having a sandwich.
They will be alone, with friends, with children, with lovers .. it doesn't matter.

When we had to meet our realtor when we were first arrived in Buenos Aires and looking for our new home, he always met us at a cafe.

Cafe Biela was the best choice in those days, we lived around the corner in a rental apartment.
As the years went by, we spent afternoons in cafes around the city, with Pup who always got a good table, a bowl of water and many loving pats from the waiters and passersby.

He liked the Evita Cafe, where the cafe has an outdoor area, inside the walls, with quiet corners for sleepy dogs to take a nap while their family spends a long time just having una cafe y medialuna dulce.
He knew all the waiters at the cafes in our neighborhood.
Actually , he knew all the shopkeepers, the park police, their horses and anyone else who happened to be on our block more than once .. Pup was like that, there was no one he didn't like and we never met anyone who did not love him.

Going to cafes was part of how we figured out where things were and where we were in the early days.
Walking to this place and that, taking breaks at a cafe, there are so very many .. the waitstaff is almost always friendly and polite so we soon had our favorites and returned often.
We became "regulars" at a few places. I wonder if they wonder why we didn't come back one day .
This bothers me sometimes, I was unable to say goodbye to all the people who had been a part of our lives for those 7 years..

Now here we are in New York State, up along the Hudson River and we have to drive to any cafe we would like to visit. We have tried a few places and only a couple stand out as memorable and not for the fact that overall, the coffee is tepid and weak and the baked goods are cold and stale and someone just doesn't care.

The Good Ones :
In Great Barrington Ma, there is a coffee place called Fuel.
Perfect name .. just perfect.
It is funky yet clean and always busy and always interesting and the coffee can be delicious. We order Peru French Roasted to bring home for our coffee maker.. we have the House coffee when we stay and we sit at the table in the window if possible so we can watch our new world go by ..
What a difference in views !

In Old Chatham NY is the Old Chatham Country Store
You can sit by a wood burning stove on a cold day and be cozy, surrounded by works of art from local artists, windows that look out on 200 year old homes and trees and well, it is pretty beautiful out there.

And then we go to Hudson NY.
Where every block has a cafe or restaurant, scattered among the many many antique shops.


While I miss Buenos Aires just about every day, at least there are places here that we are discovering and that make the missing not to bad .. the discovering is the good part, the newness is wonderful and the fact that I can understand what everyone is saying is mostly great.
although ... aren't there days when you sort of wished you could not understand everything everyone is saying ?

Today is a gloomy day .. A good Cafe might fix that.










Monday, October 7, 2013

Homesick



Every time I hear this music, I am homesick for Buenos Aires.
Enjoy ..

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Seasonal

Autumn in Buenos Aires
While reading a favorite blog of mine .. Sara in le Petit Village 
I was reminded again of how much I love Autumn and how confused and disrupted I felt in Buenos Aires when October and November rolled around , signaling Spring and Summer.
After a long few months of wet, dreary, grey , cold Fall and Winter .. from April to October .. I could finally look forward to warmth and sunshine and wearing light clothing. No coats !
But then, Christmas was in the heat of Summer.
No Christmas trees , not real ones anyway. They would die before they got there, die before they were decorated.. you would have a big dead stick in the living room with pine needles all over the floor.
So fake trees and no decorations out in the streets were the norm.

Be warned .. I am going to decorate like crazy this Christmas.
Big beeg wreath on the front door.
Lights, ribbons and bows. I will be the gaudiest neighbor in the village.

We will have family here for Thanksgiving.
I will decorate for that too.
Why not ?

Halloween will be here soon ... yep, decorating. Yellow mums and pumpkins.
I hope no one comes to the door to Trick or Treat though.

This is the time of year I missed the US most , when living in Argentina.
The holidays when family and friends came around, when the store windows were full of pretty things and lights. Argentina was gearing up for summer holidays and everyone would leave town.
It would be so hot!
We would walk Pup to the park and sit on a bench in the shade and watch the dog panting, the old folks on other benches and a kid now and then playing soccer because we all know that kids do not feel the heat or the cold. They are born with that super human thing that eventually goes away with age.
Then they sit on a bench in a park and whine about the cold or the heat or the bugs .

It is good to be back home.

I can now sit on the sofa and look out the window and whine about the leaves that need raking or the bugs or the heat or the cold.

I can also hop in the car and go anywhere.
We can shop for anything anywhere and usually find it.
We can understand the language. Well, most of the time.
We can plan the holidays and the decorations and figure out where to put all the guests ..
We can plan what to cook, what I want to bake and who gets to hold the baby ....

Tis the Season ....

Saturday, October 5, 2013

My Favorite Time of Year

I have lived in New York since I was 20 years old. 
Of course, as some of you know, I have lived elsewhere during those 20 years but we come back to New York eventually.
I miss Buenos Aires. 
I miss the people and the place and the sound and just the familiarity of it all.
But here I am , in a familiar place that is a bit unfamiliar still but I / we are finding our way around and exploring more since the house is pretty much finished... decorating / rehab-wise.
And Perfect timing ! Fall is in the air and being my favorite time of year, we get to take long drives and explore our new home area, while leaf peeping , pumpkin buying, mum buying and getting lost and discovering new towns and cafes.
We must have our cafes !
My heart is happy with the amazing amount of perfectly restored very old homes everywhere. 
Some are now libraries, museums and some are homes. 
Full of history and beauty. A perfect combination.
What with the holidays coming, the shops are full of the seasons decorations.
This the home of  President Martin Van Buren   , near where we live.
It is good to have a new place to explore. And a familiar place to live.
Even if I do miss Buenos Aires.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Friday Photo


Inspiration ..
I wanted   stone walls wherever I lived when I knew we were going to live in this area of New York State.
I wanted the whole package, old house, woods and gardens and stone walls.
We are in a town that was the first settlement , first town, where the 8th President of the US lived, where homes are most often over 100 years old and there seem to be more cows and sheep than people at times.
All of this, in my opinion, is a Good Thing.
Our house had no stone walls. It is not even close to 100 years old . But there are plenty of woods, gardens and as I keep at it ... a baby stone wall is emerging.
Yes, I am building my own. If you don't have it .. make it yourself !

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