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.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Bonded


I am the third wheel in this house.
They like me because I bring them food. 
I let them sleep on my bed on the soft comforter at night.
But they are definitely Besties now.
 They have bonded.
I am so glad.

Friday, October 30, 2015

All is Well

It was all so much less horrible than it could have been .. or even might have been.
I left the house with Merlin and Minette in the car .. we took a drive.
A couple of us seem to find car rides are good for making you take a nap.
The motel was too expensive and I didn't like the mans attitude so I didn't make a reservation but went home to mull things over ... I called the owner of the business and told her how I felt about the whole thing.
Are you ready ?
She came here .. agreed that the worker was a bit sloppy with his use of pesticides splashed all over the place ... she then proceeded to ....
1- mop the kitchen floor
2- mop the sun room floor
3-vacuumed the rugs in the bedroom and living room.
And apologized.
I told her in a couple of weeks I am going to call her and complain about something again.
And leave out the ironing board.

All is well. She totally understood my concerns and has pets and a small child so we were both totally in sync with our feelings about poisons etc.

I was / am so lucky. I have had such good luck in my life. a few horrible bad things have happened but the good sort of outweigh the bad.

I have been very stressed and worried and weepy and missing my husband so very much but I still totally appreciate all the kind people I meet all the time.

The cats were happy to go on a ride in the car but they seemed super happy to see their dishes, bed and get back in the window and keep an eye on things.

All is well.

The No Tell Motel

If things go as badly as they have been the past few days, the kitties and I are spending the night in a little local motel.
My in-laws stayed there and had high praise for the place.
As long as there are no bed bugs or fleas, we will be happy.

Apparently, my house has fleas. Or something.
Whatever it is, it especially likes the taste of Me.
Dining only at night and not waking anyone but leaving little red itchy marks.
I think I would rather it was Dracula than fleas but hey, if wishes were fishes.

So the cats are confused, they  have no idea ....
I am confused too but that seems to be persistent these days.

So I will be offline for a couple of days. Just in case anyone reads this .. you can tell all your friends , the Broad is at the No Tell Motel .. that should keep the gossips busy for a few days.


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

A Change Is Going To Come

























Spring in Buenos Aires ... the time of year when we moved there .
It was still cold but each day the trees would show a little green , a little purple ... it was not as cold on our morning walks to the park with Tate.

We were finally able to not have the heat on in the rental apt.
We really lucked out with that apartment.
I can't remember how my husband found it but it was one of those cases of talking to someone who knew someone who had an apartment for rent.

There were hardly any dishes and the beds (mattresses) were in horrible condition .. but the views were fabulous and there were only 2 apts to a floor and we were in the back so our views were good and it was silent.

Which was good, that eased us into life in a very noisy city .. where most people think honking the horn is a requirement in any drive you take.

It is Autumn here in the US ... I love the colors and smell and sight of the trees changing and the nights getting cooler . But I dread the winter.
I am constantly , with little relief, thinking of where to go next and what to do.

I am not asking for advice, I don't really want any ..

But at this time of year, when seasons change and a long cold lonely winter is ahead, I am inspired to Do Something. Get a Move on ... Change things ...
So I have begun.

We will see, hope for the best , have lots of plans for This and That ...

In the meantime ... I made deviled eggs.
Turned to do something and came back to the counter , with Minette eating the yolk out of an egg.
Apparently, she likes the combination of egg yolk, mayonnaise and mustard.
She must be a Southern girl after all !

Merlin just squints up at us and meows.
So I gave him a taste.

Now I have 2 cats who like deviled eggs.



Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Mi Departemento

Yes, I am homesick for Buenos Aires. 
For my home there. For my friends. For the life we had.
I find myself going to websites where people post on forums about the city, things going on, but they are also not very nice people and childish in their behavior. So why make myself feel worse in that sort of company ? I will remember how happy we were. How beautiful our home was. How much fun it was to take those old tired rooms and make them fresh and beautiful and Ours !

We had given up on finding our "dream home" .. we were with our realtor and just stopping to say goodbye, he was giving us our instructions on taking walks, look Up to see if there are For Sale/Vende signs and write down the addresses and let him know. He would take it from there. We were all for doing whatever we could. We were renting an apt with the dog and while we were all comfortable, it was a very nice apartment, we wanted to get settled already, in our own new home, in Buenos Aires.
I admit, we would say things like that , at home in Buenos Aires, and then grin like idiots at each other.
The fabulous Luck that we had ! We found the apartment while standing in front of it with the realtor talking about not being able to find an apartment.
The apartment building was exactly what we were looking for. Marble staircases, old cage style elevator, high ceilings, molding everywhere, 2 apartments to a floor, front to back.
City street view in front, garden , trees and doves in back .. outside our bedroom window, there was always a doves nest. That cooing was the sound we woke up to.

Some rooms only required a good paint job.
A new (antique) light fixture and our furniture.

 .

Others required being gutted and rebuilt from the floor up.

And the neighborhood required nothing but daily appreciation.
The neighbors were lovely too. At night this apartment always had huge chandeliers lit and sometimes there would be a party .. it was like watching a silent movie from our home.
Doors thrown open, beautifully dressed people laughing, drinking , walking around ..
We bought that mirror in an auction in NY State. It has been to Florida, Oregon and Argentina and now back here in NY State. It has seen quite a lot, that mirror. 

The dining room furniture came from Thonet. 
"Bentwood Rocker" fame, Thonet.
They have a store in Buenos Aires ! 

Kitchen Before ...soooo ugly.
                                               Kitchen after ... nothing was left, we changed 
                                               every single inch of the room.
                                              
In that window on the left (above this photo) we put metal window boxes for my plants.
They ended up also being Dove nurseries every Spring. 

We also had all the floors sanded then a couple of coats of polyurethane (Plastificado) put down.
So the golden wood would be in good shape for a long time to come. A single man bought the apartment, I feel that he loved the rooms and would take good care of it. I daydream of going back and making him an offer he can't refuse and buying it back .. But then, a lady I met in BA had rented a little apartment, just big enough for her. It had one of those glass topped / greenhouse style rooms with tile floors and plants , IN the apartment .. and a scary staircase with no railing .. but it was so perfect for One . I can see me in that sort of apartment too.
The weather is looking gloomy today. This means I should vacuum or do something useful.
Maybe I should discuss it with the cats first. They hate the vacuum. 

So do I.

 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Sunday, October 25, 2015

The Neighborhood Part I


 Taking a walk through the parks and neighborhoods , you always see dog walkers. With this many dogs and then there will be those who only take one or two at a time. This guy will take the dogs to an area where he will tie them to trees and leave them to bark non-stop until he takes them home, while he takes a nap. At least the dogs are getting fresh air during the day .

Tate  loved going to the cafes and having a drink, sometimes a bite to eat and rest .. then back to the parks and home. Always getting petted by a new person who would tell him how beautiful he was, kiss him on the lips and vow their love forever. He never complained.

This was one of our neighbors. The photo is taken by me, standing at the top of a staircase that went from our street up to the street and area where the British Embassy was located. It is called La Isla.
I wanted to live there but I was also quite content with our home. It was sort of a dream come true.
We had a French style building, with the old cage style elevator .. marble staircase, balconies, high ceilings, french doors throughout the apartment .. and Portero who was also a suave handsome Tango dancer. Pedro. He took such good and gentle care of us. Always polite and respectful with a twinkle in his eye. He made so many of those early days so much easier.

This is the view from one of our balconies. Those buildings were our neighbors. Haussman style. 
In South America. The Paris of South America. 

This is the Decorative Artes Museum. We would walk over there once or twice a month and see what was new, admire what we had already seen and have a bite to eat at the cafe .. the photo is taken from the park, across the street, where we spent time every day with Tate ... his parks stretched for miles along the avenues, past Museums and parks and more parks.

The Recoleta Cultural Center. A museum, cafes, shops, an ancient church, the Cemetery, the parks .. this was down the block from our home. This is where we were almost every single day for years.
Walking the dog, sitting in the park , watching fireworks on Summer nights, on New Years Eve, going to the museums, taking photos, always taking photos.

What Keeps Me Going Some Days

My little Beauty


May all his days be full of soft beds and love .

Saturday, October 24, 2015

A Very Nice Day

I had visitors today.
I have not seen them in quite some time so it was a much looked forward to visit as well as the anticipation in seeing one of the visitors who is growing fast, starting to talk, walks and runs and already has a wicked sense of humor.
A twinkle in the eye .. on a little boy that small ... oh the wonder of him and what he will be when he grows up !

It was a lovely visit.
Good food, lots of laughs, fresh air, leaves, cats, baby kisses , and then goodbyes.
It was a very nice day.

The cats were not even upset ... they seemed to just accept the fact that the Little Human was not harmful or a threat and they were able to nap and whisper to each other with no one bothering them.



It is getting cold ... it feels like Winter.
I forgot I put things in the wash so I had to scurry down to the basement of fear and dread and throw them in the dryer.
Scurrying back up the stairs like a monster was right behind me.

Never again.
Wherever I live next, the laundry will be on the same floor as the kitchen and other rooms and it will be well lit, have finished ceilings and no dark corners .

I might accept the idea of a condo if that is what it takes.
A modern condo with fresh paint, finished everything and a good monthly exterminator .. that has an appeal.

Whether they speak English or Castellano, I will see what Fate has in store for me and the cats.




Thursday, October 22, 2015

Get Lost

It was a beautiful Autumn day with grey clouds, breaks of sun then more clouds .. but what saved it was the Autumn colors ...
There are great swaths of trees that have changed to brilliant gold ..

so it was not dreary, not grey at all, but glowing gold wherever you look.

What was not gold was Evergreens and some other trees turning red...I think those are maples.. and there are so many evergreens, it is never terrible bare and dreary up here.


I am glad it was a beautiful-to-look-at-day because I got lost.

So . Lost.

I recognized a town name so knew I was not going South but other than that , I had no idea where I was. Eventually I learned  that I had already gone ... waaay South.

I ran an errand, picked up a few things at a market that is farther away from my house than the usual market but when you are alone with not a lot to do and no friends to hang out with, taking the long way to the other market isn't so bad. Especially at this time of year when you drive over a hill and spread out before you are mountains covered with trees changing colors.
On the way you pass horse farms where fabulous horses hang out by the fence so I can get a better look at them.
People are decorating for Autumn with pumpkins and corn stalks and leaves , very pretty, very New England-y ..

I knew the cats were ok, there was plenty of food and water and eventually I would get home.
So I didn't panic. I went with the flow.



It started to get a bit dark so I stopped and asked for directions and was shocked to know how far from home I had gone ... so I hopped on the Palisades Parkway and that took me right home.
What was a real surprise was how far South I had truly gone.

I went through towns with monuments to the Revolution .. you know, the one where we told the English to go back home.
There were homes that looked that old too.
Old homes with gardens and fences and ancient old trees and lots of leaves.
We all have that in common up here ... lots of leaves.

And then there was the sign for Chatham ... I was happy to see it.
And in a few more minutes I was home.
One cat was waiting at the door. Merlin. He had no idea who I was , I think. He can hardly see.
He was squinting up at me.
But when I put everything down and picked him up, I heard that old rattle/purr start up .. he was glad to see me .

Minette mosied in like she had just come in from getting a manicure ... all aloof and girly.
But when I picked her up and kissed her, she butted heads with me and purred.
She is still my baby girl.


They aren't telling me what they did while I was gone.
The house looks ok .. I guess they took naps... ate a little... took another nap ... talked about how long I had been gone, took a nap.


It was not horrible being lost today.
In fact it was quite beautiful and pleasant ..
It was very nice coming home.
If anyone gets lost, keep the getting home part in mind.
It is worth the getting lost part.



Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Queens

"Way back in time, when my children were small and my husband worked all the time, we had friends who were gay.
They were old friends of my husbands and I was charmed by them, loved by them and amused by them for years ... lucky me !

When my son was born, a couple of friends were Auntie Sy and Auntie Richard.
Sy was beautiful, gentle and outrageous and he loved to hook his arm in mine and go prancing down the street with me, enormously pregnant at the time, telling people that he was sure it would be a boy.
Richard would just roll his eyes and say something about names ... that baby has to have a name !
He also knitted beautiful little sweaters and blankets for the baby .

Then the hilarious name choosing game would start, with me having to sit/lie down and wait until my ribs stopped aching from all the laughter.
My daughter was 5 . She loved them. My husband referrd to them as The Queens.
My little sweet daughter got so excited when she first heard that ... she told all her friends that the Queen was coming to our house.
I miss them .. I miss them all.

They were older then , they have long passed on but they are a reminder to me of what the world was like, just 30-40 years ago .. in New York City at least.
How you can raise a child to be open hearted and kind and generous and loving, regardless of titles, names , designations.
Those two older men with their gentle hearts and sweet humor were Humans ... kind, loving , full of laughter Humans .
There is not and never will be anything wrong with that .

Yesterday ...

What you can't see in this photo is my husband walking along beside me and Pup running ahead and back and ahead and sniffing the whole time.. he was a Standard Poodle but we used to say he wanted to be a Blood Hound .. sniffing out his quarry.

This was a short walk from our apartment, up a flight of stairs from our street to this street, past massive apartment buildings and the British Embassy ... just over there on the left ..

Behind me ( taking the photo) is a stair case that leads down into the parks that go on for miles.
With a monument for Evita and hills for skateboarders and grass for babies and families .. I will trade you my back yard for those parks !
It all seems like it was just yesterday ..

Today there may be changes coming.
Today I have to find Frontline for kitty cats.
Tomorrow you will hear all about it.


Monday, October 19, 2015

The View

The view, in winter, from the living room in our flat in Buenos Aires.
I always wanted to go look inside one of those apartments across the street.
When we first moved in, the nights were warm and one of the apartments would have the French doors open and the massive chandeliers would be lit and it looked enchanted.
I imagined all the furniture being gorgeous French style chairs and tables and wonderful wooden floors. The floors in our apartment were wood but I wanted inlaid French floors .. which I am sure were the floors across the street.

I pictured parties, dancing and sipping Champagne in the open doors looking out .. at us !

We had French doors ( and windows!) and beautiful floors and chandeliers ... but somehow, I just knew that those in the flat across the street were much more beautiful. In my imagination, they were suitable for a good French movie starring Deneuve and Depardieu and some ingenue ..

Tate loved to lie in the open doorway of the balcony where all my plants sat ... he would toast his old bones in the afternoon sun.
At night he liked going out and looking down through the railings and watching the people who walked by , talking ... I wonder if he could understand them ~ He seemed interested.

That view was all green leaves and dove nests ( and babies) in the Spring and Summer.

Now I look out my windows and everything is green, there are baby chipmunks to drive the cats crazy and in winter there will be deer.
I rarely hear the cars on the street, never see people on the street, can't see anything in any windows but light coming from them ... there are birds ... oh my , there are birds here.

As beautiful as it is here, all year round, my heart is still back there..

Sunday, October 18, 2015

I live in a Cat House




There is nothing at all wrong in living in a Cat House.
Unless you have issues with cat hair.
Meowing.
Litter being tracked through the room.
Cat hair.
The sofa from Argentina being used as a scratching post .
Litter on the carpet.
Cat hair.
Snuggles at night when the lights are out.
Purring at odd hours of the day or night.
Getting a head butt for no reason but love.
Cat hair.
Having to submit to being washed because I am never clean enough .. apparently.
Especially when I just get out of the shower ..
Purring for no particular reason but love.
Cat hair.
Nothing eases heartache like a cat.

Friday, October 16, 2015

My Deer ...

Every night about this time, Minette and I go on Deer Watch.
The fields and forest behind my home, and the forest and lake behind the house across the street, are the hangouts of the local deer population.
And to get from one to the other, the deer have to go through my back yard, around through the side yard, stopping in the front yard to have a snack on whatever those flowers are that tempt them every night .. then they have to cross the street.

Minette alerted me to them one night, standing at the window, all stiff and in a kitten hunting pose.
She saw them out there way before I could pick them out in the shadows, the little bit of light coming from a street lamp ..
All the homes are dark, small porch lights are the only light other than the moon .. and street lights.

The first time I saw them .. I was looking straight at them and did not see them, they were so still, under the tree .. then the baby moved .. babies, they just can't stay still.
And I , whispering to Minette, watch them every night now .. we are enchanted by them.
A small family who travel from the forest and fields behind me , through our property and across that scary road to the gardens and woods beyond.

When I see them, Minette and I are really still .. I whisper to her, she is just frozen .. when the deer are out of sight, she relaxes a little. I know it isn't for the same reasons but I relax too .. they made it across the road with their fawn and a car did not hit them.

Tonight Minette was looking, I checked but saw no deer.
Then I heard a car coming and heard the honk.

I jumped up and ran to the window  ... please, God, he didn't hit them, didn't hit the baby ...
Minette is all stiff and alert ...
They were all there, safe ... no cars were coming .. they cautiously ( and too slowly for my comfort) crossed the street, baby fawn and mama, to the other side and on to the bog.


I am going to put a Deer Crossing sign out ... threaten people to slow down. . the speed limit is 35 .. 55-65 is the norm. Which bothers me so much because there are small children living here too.
And this is not a highway.

So tonights Deer Watch was full of tension and a sweet baby fawn with its mama and everyone made it safely across.

I am considering buying carrots and celery and put them out there for them to find tomorrow night.
If I am here this winter, I am getting a bale of hay from the farmer up the hill. For my backyard.
For my deer.


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Remind me again

                    Why did we move away from Buenos Aires ?

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

At the Library

2 blocks from our home was the Biblioteca .
There were no books that we would be reading but the building is so amazing, so fantastical .. I loved it. There are benches where you can sit outside and read and admire the place.
Behind it are part of the parks that stretch along the big Avenue Libertador for many blocks ..
It is the Bauhaus style of Architecture .. 
We listened to some concerts there .. but mostly we were there in the parks each day with Tate, sitting on a bench, soaking in the Wonderfulness of living in Buenos Aires.





Monday, October 12, 2015

It Was A Good Day

Merlin has settled in to his new life here ... he seems to have adjusted quite easily.
Minette might be having a harder time with it. She likes him and they often are found sleeping next to each other , at afternoon nap times but she still gets all huffy and stomps out of the room if I am seen holding him and talking love talk to him.
If I try to hold her after I have been holding him, she will struggle to get away and will leave the room.
She has a lot of attitude, my little Minette.
Merlin ... no attitude at all.
He is old and sweet and dear. 
He has bad eyesight, he might be a bit hard of hearing and he is missing a few teeth.
But he is no longer all boney and frail feeling and he has been seen playing like a kitten with a new toy someone bought just for him.
He enjoys nothing more than a good pillow and some sunshine for his naps.
And at night, he is there on my bed, waiting for me to settle down so he can get his beauty rest.
He never meows. He never hisses or acts unpleasant in any way.
He does purr .. very loudly. Very sweetly.
It was a Good Day when we found Merlin.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

It Happened Again Today

First I heard the geese .. the cats were glued to the glass doors... looking at what I could not see.
I went to the sunroom and slid open the glass doors then we all heard them .. the starlings.
At first I could just see a few flying around in the back yard, coming in from the fields beyond ... then they got louder ... then I saw more ... and more ... a huge black cloud of black birds .

A Murmuration ... they swoop and swirl and fly into the sky then down into the tree tops and stay a short while then as one they all lift off and fly on .. to wherever they are headed.

I have seen this twice now - in person. Once before on a video when I didn't even know I would be living in a house , much less out in the countryside.

It is mind blowingly wonderful ... Nature in it's glory ... the sight and the sound.

Here is a video , since you know I am not up to filming one of my own.
But the thing is ... they all do the same thing, make the same sound ... just different locations..

A MURMURATION

Murmuration


Saturday, October 10, 2015

It is a Crazy World

And some of those Crazies have discovered my blogs. Especially Minette and Merlin .. oy !
I have had to change the Comment section a little, to avoid being buried under insane comments from , so far, only one lunatic but it was enough to make me tighten up the security.

Sorry, I appreciate your thoughts and comments and interest and I want to read those comments .. I just need to keep the insane a little farther away.

Thank you !

Friday, October 9, 2015

La Negra

La Negra - Costurera

Friday Fotos

Because I am too lazy to think of anything to write about .

Palermo Soho - good shopping, good eating .. favorite Sunday destination
Signs of Spring
Museum of Modern Art ... we just walked over there any time we felt like it . 
View of the Neighbors across the street
National Library in Spring
  

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Words

Step -Sister Ugly ... someone ( clever) posting a comment on a fashion blog .. about a cute girl in a cute outfit with the ugliest clunky shoes ... labeled it perfectly Step Sister Ugly.

Now before any knickers get twisted, I am a step sister. I do not take offense.
The step sister to Cinderella should be offended ...

Lately I have been getting such a kick out of reading the comments and posts of my fellow bloggers.

One of my favorites ( not that I don't love every single one of them ) is Going Gently.
Partly because of the words and expressions used by everyone on there .. but me. The American.
But I just love reading the blog ... he is a big softie .. loving his dogs and neighbors and partner and just being a Treat.

A Treat. That is what my husband said to me, in the earliest days of meeting him.
He told me I was a Treat. It was easy to pick that word up and use it for my own.
He was a Treat. One that doesn't come along often and you are extremely lucky when you recognize it and keep it. Treats like him are for keeps. A Keeper.
Another good word.

I have a couple of friends who are Keepers.
My cats are keepers lol.

Do you have someone who is a Keeper ? Do they know ? why are they are Keeper ?

Your own children goes without saying .. although there have been times that I remember wishing someone would make me an offer, here, take her for a while, she is yours.
or you think he is cute ? you take him then !

My cats are keepers. Minette because I have had her since she was just weeks old .. she lived through so much at that wee tiny age ... and is now a fierce little girl .. she doesn't take guff from anyone !

And then there is Merlin ... can a cat get any sweeter ?? I doubt it !
He lays on the sofa ... it is sometimes hard to tell the head from the tail .. a great pile of soft hair.
If you get close and whisper his name ... say I love you ... you hear the purring start.
I don't even have to touch him ... all it takes is I Love You.

Try it with your pet.
Try it with your partner .. your sleeping child ( like there is anyone on here with a child that Doesn't do this ??! )

Whisper .... I Love You ..  you are a Keeper too, by the way.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

First sights ....

       One of our first nights in Buenos Aires. And one of many fabulous sunsets.

Such a beautiful place .....

It is a gloomy Sunday, at least it is dry and not miserable and stormy as much of the East Coast gets battered by storms.

We will probably get rain but I don't think it will be much more than that.

So for now I am sitting here trying to decide what to do today .. besides daydream about moving back to Buenos Aires.
Every day my mind just goes back to that.

So I will share some photos with you and you can sympathize with me , of course she wants to go back to such a beautiful place !! 









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