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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, June 30, 2014

Because if she let go of her grief even for a minute, it would only hit her harder when she bumped into it again.

Alice Munro
Away from Her

Sunday, June 29, 2014

More than that

Someone is growing up.
Someone is about 3 times bigger than she was when she came home with me that winter day.
We are comfort to each other .
We love each other.
We give each other kisses. Mine don't usually involve bites though.
She likes to wake up too early in the morning.
I am starting to appreciate early morning in the Summer.
She looks like a pretty little cat ... but she is more than that ... she is a lifesaver.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

If I Were There Today ..

San Telmo

Cobblestone streets, antique shops galore, fabulous restaurants with balconies and french doors, open at night so you can hear the music from the musicians in the park across the street.
Funky, charming, ridiculously atmospheric and magical.

We bought many of our antiques and chandeliers here.
We window shopped and wished that we had more money to buy more rugs and then felt really grateful that we had what we had and were able to be there and do what we were doing.

It is always good to stop now and then and just be grateful for what you have .

I am sure it is even more gentrified than it was when we were there , over the 7 years we lived in Buenos Aires, we saw the neighborhoods change.
All getting more prosperous, more crowded and a lot of them were cleaned up a bit and even more beautiful.

San Telmo didn't need that much work ..
A bit of washing , cobblestone streets and high walls with the sounds of fountains and bird song were enough to keep it perfectly perfect.

If I were there today...

I would have a salad at the restaurant that overlooks Dorrego Square.
After lunch, I would shop at the stalls along the Square, or just the people who had blankets throw down on the ground and sold their things that way.

I would wander slowly among the antique shops and make a stop at a leather shop I especially liked.
Buy some gifts perhaps.
Say hello to the lady who sold us two of her beautiful crystal chandeliers.
(that are wrapped and in boxes because the ceilings in a Mid Century Ranch house-are too low )  .. bummer.
But I have enough Things and Memories .. I can take those out any time and enjoy them.




Monday, June 23, 2014

One Year Ago Today

One year ago today, my husband and I were asleep in the big bed in the big old 200 year old house that we were renting while we were house hunting for our new home here in New York State.

At 4 am, our son called.
The baby was on his way.
We were too groggy and tired to jump up and rush to the hospital where we would not be allowed to see anyone, so we fell back to sleep for a couple of hours.

Then we made the 3 hour drive to NYC , where we waited for a few hours .. where we met our new teeny tiny little man.

Today is his First Birthday.
He was here with me this weekend.
He is learning to walk . He is so beautiful it hurts my heart.
He is talking. Some of it we can even understand .. I especially like the words that he makes up.
They should mean something, they sound so good !

I wish his Grandfather was here to see him !!
He would pop with pride.

I can't show you his photos but I will tell you that Minette is fascinated with him. With his toys. With the sounds he makes.  He seems pretty interested in her too ... although she isn't loving the squeezing and pulling that can happen when he gets a hold of her .. so they are friends without touching at the moment.

She will be the First Pet he will remember . Hopefully she will be around for a long time and he will be able to cuddle her and have good First Cat memories.

There is a Boy in the House !!!





Sunday, June 22, 2014

Humans

After a morning of blowing giant bubbles for the baby, the little family went back home to the City and Minette and I are left, one of us napping, one of us figuring out what to do on a really beautiful day.
The sun is shining, there are no clouds, everything is blooming and a baby Highland calf was born yesterday at the farm.
The sheep told me ... you know sheep, huge gossips .. but they all think I am one of the family now, they see me every day. Not just the sheep, the horse and the cattle too.
I am honored.

After more coffee and perhaps a homemade cinnamon roll from the local bakery, I will hop in the car ( or slowly ease into the car) and take myself to a town center where there are cafes and shops and humans.
The cows, sheep, horse and Minette are fine but I do miss talking to and visiting with Humans.



Saturday, June 21, 2014

Sometimes I Just Hate People

http://www.examiner.com/article/owner-surrendered-dog-too-frightened-to-move-at-kentucky-animal-control

He won't move out of the corner.
If this doesn't break your heart, nothing will.

God bless him ..

**** Russell has been adopted and is now in a loving , safe environment  .. score one for the Good Guys !! ****

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Memory Lane

Come on, we will take a walk down Memory Lane.
You can see the places I loved, the places I miss and well, you will see ...

On Libertador, where our favorite cafes were located with the park across the street.
Two blocks from our apartment, the Weekend Feria . Today I was wearing a pair of earrings that I bought there .
Around the corner from our apartment, on the street to Pup's parks.
Cafe Rivas ... San Telmo ... fabulous. Everything about it. Plus the neighborhood .
 Cobblestone streets, birds singing, everything , enchanted.
The elusive photographer ..

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Music, etc

Endila

I just discovered this singer. I listen to this all the time ... one might say obsessively.

I hope you like it too .. maybe not obsessively but it is nice.

I am going through a new phase.

I want to be in Paris.


                                                                click on her name

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Neurotic

 Minette,   is fine , going nuts .. running back and forth and then flopping down on her pillow by the sliding doors to watch out for chipmunks.
They come out and stand there and laugh at her.
I thought I saw them mocking her, you know, sticking out their tongues and shaking their tiny butts at her.
She pretends to be bored, yawns, shows her sharp teeth, they run away.
They are the most interesting things happening these days ..

Today I took a drive to pick up fresh veggies at my favorite farm stand.
 One of the owners gave me a tour of the herbs that smell or taste like another plant ..minty things, strange plants that taste like broccoli, pretty plants .. it was interesting .. 
I bought something but I forgot what it was ..it will be a surprise when it is cooked.

Tonights dinner is Rotelle with sauteed in oil and garlic ... baby zucchini , baby spinach, cherry tomatoes and chives. It should be good. At least it is all fresh.

I saw a baby Angus cow today. I see a lot of baby sheep and an occasional goat.

I see horses but no babies.

I see humans, babies everywhere ! 

And here at home I have the baby cat. 
Who is now napping after losing her mind and practically running up the walls.
She sits out in the sun room with only a screen between her and a family of chipmunks.
I think it is making her neurotic.

I think I am making her neurotic.
I think I am neurotic.

The sun is shining, everything is so green .. it will be sort of sad to leave it . 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Time

How to stop time :  Kiss

How to travel in time :  Read

How to escape time :  Music

How to feel time :  Write

How to waste time :  Social Media

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Hold my hand .....

" I am a strong person. But every once in a while, I would like someone to hold my hand and tell me, things are going to be OK "

I saw this quote the other day and it appealed to me.
I like to think that I am a strong person.
I feel like I must be strong, otherwise, a few months ago, I would have just flopped down on the bed or the floor and just stayed there... weeping, moaning now and then and just being completely forlorn and pathetic.

But instead, I went out and adopted a tiny kitten that needed me.
I held her in my hands and told her that things were going to be OK .. she had me now.
We would muddle along together and get through this.
And you know what ? I think we are.

I still weep at odd times .. no telling what will trigger it.
I look at her sometimes and wish my husband were here, he would have been crazy in love with this kitten.
He wanted a Russian Blue- that was the plan, when we came back to the US and bought our house "in the woods", we would get a dog and a cat.
But he said, we will get the cat first, I want a Russian Blue.

So after all the sad and horrible things that came along instead, I found myself in the Animalkind waiting room, with all those glass rooms with cats and kittens and then there was one, a tiny little Russian Blue.
With those huge yellow eyes and squeaky croaky voice.
I had no doubt, that was the kitten for me.
So now she and I muddle along together, holding hands and telling each other that things are going to be OK.

I might take a break here.
I need to get out in the Spring air and find some things to do and maybe find a new home for the two of us.

I won't be gone long , maybe I will be right back, but don't worry if I am not back right away .. shhhh ... the baby is sleeping ~

Monday, June 9, 2014

Pet Shop Boys

 Minettes New Favorite Music

I love this but I admit I was surprised when Minette told me she liked them too.
I just thought she was more of a Classical or French Music kitten. She always seemed to be around when she heard me putting some good Piaf on the stereo or when I listen to Delibes and Barber .. just goes to show, you never really know your kitten.

We are waiting for word from the Tree Guy.
Then we will wait for the noise, mess and scary sights of the Tree Guys.
Then we will not be afraid next time we have a storm with big winds ..

Who knew that tree was splitting in half ??

Enjoy the music .. I want to go to London.

Monday Look At This Blog

BA Travel Guide 



By the time we arrived in Buenos Aires and had been house hunting with our realtor (soon to be good friend, Rafael) , we felt that we had learned the barrios and we were on our way to finding out way around.
Because of this, I never thought that we would need a travel guide.

Boy was I wrong !
Sure we found our way but how much time did each trip take ? twice as long because we didn't know where we were going or where we were, half the time.

If I had it to do over again ( Oh how I wish I could) I would immediately call Sandra .. while she is a travel guide, she is a wonderful person ( friend) and not only would I get excellent directions and help but I would have learned my way around in a much nicer and less aggravating way.

So if you are going to Buenos Aires or just dreaming about it ... read her blog.
See if after a few times of reading, that you are starting to get a longing to go to Buenos Aires, learn to Tango, drink Malbec , watch Polo, go to the races for free and lounge on the grass under umbrellas and watch beautiful horses run past .. under the bluest skies and brightest sun.

Take the train to San Isidro on Sunday and go to the flea market in the park by the station.
Walk cobblestone streets and listen to a million birds singing in the trees that line the street.

Go to Chinatown in Belgrano on a Sunday.
Go to the Museums.
Listen to concerts in the park .. impromptu wonderful music.

Buy souvenirs at the feria in Recoleta, buy cool hip things in Palermo Soho and antiques in San Telmo.

Just ask Sandra, she'll help you.
Ask me and I will beg you to take me with you.


Sunday, June 8, 2014

A Busy Sunday

It was quite a busy Sunday for Minette and I.
It was just perfect, weatherwise. Blue skies, light breeze, not too hot , not too cold.
The air smelled so clean and fresh ..

I spoke to the vet finally and found that Minette has nothing wrong with her, that is, there is nothing that shows up in any test or in her blood.
So while she has stomach issues, it is not something wrong with her, she is not sick.
Phew !

I got her new food in hopes that might change things.
We will see.
Meanwhile she is getting cuter every day and sweeter ... she is more affectionate. That really melts my heart .

She did a lot of bird watching and napping , I walked around the property with the "tree guy" and found out how many more trees have to come down.
Before we moved in, we had 5 large trees cut down. Dead trees, sick trees, threatening the house trees.

Now I have some new ones, one is threatening to fall on the house or across the street taking the power lines with it. It has to go tout suite!
And old oak tree is leaning towards my bedroom ... it has to be cabled to keep the leaning part from breaking off and falling on me while I sleep.

Three very tall dead pine trees in the back yard... one would hit the house and the other two would possibly take out the swimming pool area .. so this week, they all go.
Did I mention we had 5 trees taken down before we moved in ? and there are many more even after more are removed ?
What were we , crazy ? Neither one of us even knew how to mow a lawn ! We don't swim, we really were simple minded Romantics when we moved here .
Sort of like we were when we moved to Argentina after having visited once ... for 10 days .. so we moved there. With the dog and all of our furniture. We bought an apartment there. It worked out fine, for 7 years we were happy there and everything was fine.
So I keep hoping that although the worst possible thing that could happen, did happen, that the rest of the good luck will remain intact and where I live and what I do next will work out fine.
It is hard sometimes to think ahead ... it is a future I have a hard time imagining .. alone.

For now, let's just get these big dead trees out of here !
Did I mention the Chipmunk family? they have a baby . Minette wants him. Badly.

She is outgrowing her bed.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

I Made It

The Rains stopped.
The Sun came out.
Life has begun to return to Normal.
Or as in my life, the new normal. I have still not adjusted to things but I am managing.
The kitten made a big difference.
I wondered a few times if I would make it through one more snow storm. Being unable to even open the front door, impossible to get the car out of the garage, terrified something would happen and no one would be able to help me or rescue me or whatever.
All my life, there was Someone there for me.
While the children are there .. for their mom  ... I live alone with a kitten.
A life I had no previous experience with and felt that I was getting way too many tests to see if I could do it properly.
I feel lucky , looking back, that I managed at all.
I picture me, lying in bed ... weeping ... mountains of Kleenex all over the house, no food, only coffee, and an occasional cinnamon roll .. a pitiful mess.
But I did it.
It is Spring, the sun is shining, the garden is over the shock of that sun shining and the warmth each day .. everything is blooming and half of it I don't recognise but it is all Good.

The kitten has a new pasttime , she lies on a little pillow, in the Garden Room, in front of the sliding doors .. a screen door is all there is between her and a family of tiny chipmunks.
The baby chipmunk is even curious about Minette. They met ... with only glass between them, they both froze then just stared and no one got all fussed, they just went on with what they were doing.
Sure Minettes tail was whipping around like crazy and the chipmunk didn't come to the glass again but they acted pretty cool if you were to ask me.

I ran my errands today then realized there was nowhere to go and nothing else to do.
So I came home and called the vet.
Tomorrow Minette and I go see what the tests had to say and if there is a cure for her not-so-good tummy.
Fingers crossed it is something easy and effective and does not require anything that will be scarey.
I can't deal with scarey.
I can just manage to deal with this !

I find every day I am overwhelmed with the need to Shop.
I am looking for sneakers. But cool ones. I don't know where to find them.
I will look when we are in Hudson tomorrow .. a town populated with Cool People, they must have shoe stores.

More tomorrow.. fingers crossed for Minette.


Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Summertime

It is 84°! It feels like Summertime !

 It is actually noisy outside, in the back yard, by the bird feeders , a wild bunch there today !
I drove to Great Barrington Ma this morning.. to see a doctor about my hand .
It might be a carpal tunel thing, or a tendon, or a nerve, or a tired hand.
Whatever it is, it certainly hurts and aspirin or Advil  and the little glove that makes me look like a Skateboarder, are not working.
It mostly hurts in my thumb. go figure.

So .. my appointment is for sometime in June. weeks and weeks from now.
By then it will be gone or  I will be addicted to pain killers.
I will try some New Age medicine .. like Bloody Marys every 4 hours and only salads and chocolate cake for one month.
That way I will either be cured  or I won't feel it anyway .
But I will at least have a nice taste of chocolate in my mouth.

The Kitten wants to play.
She is also really reeeally interested in the birds and what goes on outside.
We have to be super careful she doesn't make a dash for it ... when one of the 5 doors to this house is opened. It is weird , every room in the house has a door to get outside.
Whoever built this house had issues...either a  need to have an exit available at all times or fear of being trapped or they owned a door company.
It turned out nicely though .. it is convenient to go outside , when the notion hits you, without even leaving the room, you can just walk out that door !

So right now all I hear is birds . I think I love it.

In Buenos Aires, we lived in a 4 lane city street .. Buses . taxis, cars, trucks, loud radios, horns .. lotsa horns honking and people ... everywhere.
But if you went to the back of the apartment, which was overlooking the courtyard behind the building, there was one massive tree and all you could hear if you opened the windows ... was ... Birds.
Just like my back yard.

So if I go lie down now on the bed and close my eyes, I can pretend I am in Buenos Aires.

But then a Kitten will pounce on me and spoil the mood.
I think I am better off lying on the bed with the kitten and playing with her ...

It feels like Summertime.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

The Cat Hid My Glasses

Those glasses are either on my face   when reading or doing something that I need to see .. like cook or find something   and they were last seen sitting on my desk.
They have a tendency to be shy and quiet so it took a little while to realize that they were not still sitting there, waiting to be of use.
I know they are scared out of their wits and being quiet and it is just making it more difficult to find them.

I thought they might be hiding in a corner under the sofa ... which is huge and heavy and low.
But this morning .. early this morning, Thank you Minette, I took the Swiffer thingee and lay on my stomach on the floor and swiffed under the sofa, hoping I would hear that little sound meaning I was pulling my glasses out of their hiding place.
But no ... not even a dust bunny. ( lonely widows dust a lot ).

The kitten thinks the hunt for the glasses is just about the most fun thing we have done all week.
When I gave up , she began running through the house like an insane kitty cat then collapsed on the floor, by my feet, purring.
Who can be mad at her ??!

This morning the glasses did not come slinking back onto the desk, embarrassed that they were gone so long, sorry they didn't let me know where they were and when to expect them back.
So now I know it is serious and I must do a more thorough search.
I am sort of glad, it will be something to do.

Yesterday I visited the farm but they were having a sale/give-away of farming tools and junk. I had hopes that a small lamb or little calf might be part of the give-away but no .. rusty hoes and broken kitchen chairs were all I found.
And a lamp that looks suspiciously like the one I used to have..that my husband hated ... hmmmm.
I can't find my glasses but my old lamp returns 20 years later...
Does this mean IF I live long enough, my glasses will show up in a garage sale nearby ?

I have to get another cup of coffee ... I am listening to the soundtrack of Amelie .. the sun is shining, more flowers have opened, there are massive iris out there opening one at a time, rhodedendrums everywhere, purple, magenta and now white .. my nasturtiums are taking off and so are the sweet peas .. the pool cannot be seen right now- there is too much jungle around it ... I saved that for a hired person. I learned my lesson yesterday .

Maybe I will go have a chat with one of the sheep today. Get some advice on finding lost glasses.

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sunset in Buenos Aires