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.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Starting Over

Starting over in a new land .. It has its Ups and Downs.
When it is with someone you share everything with or if you are on your own for the first time since you were 20 .. it can be scary, thrilling, life changing, wonderful, not so wonderful. Just like Life.

I did it on a very small scale here in Florida.
I brought my old cat Merlin and my young'un Minette but when I arrived in Florida, I inherited Honey .. my mom's cat.

So here I sit, in a condo in Florida, thinking fondly with a bit of sadness for the home that I loved and the city I loved and the life that I loved ... in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Surrounded by cats ... that I love.
It is sunny and the skies are bright and blue and there must be something going on Military-wise because Navy jets are flying over ... low and fast . I am thrilled. It is like having a private air show, just for me and the cats. Though they don't seem as impressed as I am.

It is Thursday.
I woke thinking it was Saturday.
Oh well, if you think about it, every day is Saturday for me now. Unless they are Sunday.
I rarely have appointments to keep although I did have one recently and totally completely forgot. I think I remembered the next day ...

 I was thinking of driving to St Augustine today .. I have not been there in many years and I know it won't look like it used to but the Spanish architecture and being right by the ocean makes it such a lovely place .. It is at the top of the To Do List.

                                   The Old Fort - St Augustine 

I promise a Trip Report .

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Another Beautiful Day

There is a change of scenery.
The sun's not shining down on me, the need for sunblock and sunglasses is lessened.
I know in the winter in New York, I dreamt of warm sunshine and not having to wear scarves, gloves, boots, socks and coats and ending up walking around like a well wrapped Zombie.
Summer in Upstate NY was short ... fabulous and not too hot and cool nights and it smelled good with all the mown grass and flowers and clean air.

Here I enjoy sitting out on the lanai, where Things cannot bite/sting/infect me and the cats lie in little warm cat comas and I listen to music and read.
I miss walking up to the farm at the top of our hill/road and talking to my friends the Highland Cattle.

The crazy wall-eyed Billy Goat who would just as soon butt me as look at me.
The sheep, all gathered in a close little group .. with a tiny lamb hidden among them .. chewing .. all day, just chewing.
And the dear Rescue Horse. A retired, scarred horse that the farmer rescued. I don't know if it was lonely being the only horse but it sure was well set, food whenever he wanted it, a massive barn and stall, company if he wanted to chat with a goat or sheep and me ... I told him all my troubles, I wept on his shoulder .. well, sort of ..

So here I am . In Florida. Where it is sunny and hot and flowering and where I get lost all the time and I still have no clue who my neighbors are and the only wildlife is the armadillo who came out of the woods and the bright green snake that came out of the grass ..

I have been thinking of the lines from a film .. Miranda Richardson, living in South Africa..
Walking out the door of her home and lighting a cigarette and saying ..
"Another F*king Beautiful Day"....

So today is cloudy and overcast and maybe not so hot and I like it.
Another Beautiful Day .

Monday, September 26, 2016

That Moment

It has been a quiet day, just me with Minette, Merlin and Honey, hanging out on the lanai, in the living room, upstairs on the bed .. we all have been totally boneless and 3 of us were very cat-like.
Well, maybe I was the one that was cat-like, they were just being themselves .... cats.

There was nowhere to go, nothing to do and no one to do it with and I was fine with staying put.
It has been sunny and warm but not too much, it has been a really nice day.

A tiny wave of sadness from being alone so much hit late in the day .. so I went out to the lanai to read and look at the woods .. Minette and I are always on the look-out for another armadillo.

As I was sitting there reading .. I heard this sound ... and smiled.
I knew what was coming .... first it is a whine ... high and shrill and far away ... then you can hear it clear and close ... the high pitched scream of a US Navy Jet flying low overhead.
Then he was over us ... then gone ... I got goosebumps ... I could also see it very clearly, they fly low over this area because the base is close, by the edge of the river ...

Why do I love that sound ? Why does it make me stop and listen and smile ?

I was born in a hospital, on a US Air Force Base . My Grandfather was a Marine Drill Sergeant.
When his friends would visit our house, they would salute me.
My mom remarried and we went to live in Hawaii .. Navy and Air Force jets everywhere, all day.

Then we moved to North Carolina and everything quieted down.
But when they had those Air Shows, we would go sometimes and I would get such a thrill.

I have not been to one of those shows in many years.
But now, here in my new home... they fly over pretty much every day.

And I am thrilled for that moment ...

Sunday, September 25, 2016


I have Bags Under My Eyes.
Things Happened but   why do I have more wrinkles around my eyes, or why do the cats sleep after they see me up and drinking coffee but not while I am in bed , huddled in the blankets... moaning ... shut up ... go to sleep ... waaaaa...
Ever hear a cat snicker ?
Well, they do.

I looked in the mirror.
I know, big mistake first thing in the morning, too early in the morning .. my eyes .. my eyes.
I lost a bit of weight, you would think the bags under my eyes in the morning would be smaller.
Is all the water in my body retained under my eyes ?? I thought it distributed itself all over .. like fat fingers or a full bladder ... but no .. it sits there on your face, under your eyes ... telling the world ..
Look ! she had too much MSG last night ! 
Look at this woman ! Too lazy to cook but not too lazy for Ramen Noodles !

When I was much younger, I never knew anything about bags under ones eyes.
I was a skinny little thing who dreamt of having to wear a larger bra size.
Sometimes life is just not fair.

* I do know that people wake up with much worse issues in their lives and I know that what makes me laugh is not what makes everyone else laugh so if this offends you in any way, I apologize and urge you to not read my blog anymore... because sooner or later, I am sure I will say something offensive again ... I know, it isn't fair but that's life.*

                          This little sweetie is a future Lancome Under Eye Concealer user ...

Friday, September 23, 2016

An Everyday Sight

We used to walk past these buildings just about every day. The tile work on the sidewalk, the colors, the gates and design .. are just fabulous.
This is what I am homesick for ... just taking a walk and seeing things like this .. an everyday sight..

Thursday, September 22, 2016

A Cat in a Basket

You have to be careful at my house these  days.
You never know what you will find ..
A cat in a basket.
A kitten in a closet.
Your chair is no longer unoccupied.
You must keep that door to the pantry closed tight !
There are water dishes Everywhere ... and they still try to drink from the sink.
The grocery bill is higher. I don't eat more.
I buy litter and cat food.
Cat beds, and pillows and toys ... these are known as Cat Dollars and don't count when spent.
I am getting paid back though, in ways that are more valuable than any dollars.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Girl Talk (Cat Week)

I have to talk to them more and talk to humans less.
These cats relieve stress, make me calm, amuse me and they seem to love me.
Who needs humans ?

In this photo, they were considering going down to the lanai and napping there or should they stay in the house with the a/c and just  chill...

We all decided to stay in and chill.

Cat Week Continues ......

Saturday, September 17, 2016

A Good Thing

I have always , it seems, been enchanted with the sky . Sounds goofy but I tend to pay a lot of attention to the way the skies are , especially in places I might live in. Argentina had fabulous skies, it is very flat and the air is clean and clear. So it makes sense that the skies are beautiful.  The sunsets are fabulous.

Here , above, you have my Florida sunset. A couple of nights ago.
The US South, wherever you go, you are going to see Pine trees. The pines here are very tall.
Then there are the evergreens, like big fat Christmas trees, so there are beautiful mixes of many shades of green ... with lush soft green grass.
All coming together to fool a person into thinking it must be the middle of summer and not winter or fall. This is all fine with me, I saw too much snow and bare trees in the recent past, I can enjoy the sight of all this Green for a while.

It is very flat here, the skies stretch out for wonderful views.
The clouds coming in off the ocean are massive and full of character. Not small puffy little white cotton balls, these clouds have oomph ! They are big, and look solid ... they are the clouds a child would lie in the grass on their back and look up at and see the shapes and think that they are animals ..
I remember seeing an elephant cloud when I was a child. The big cloud ears, the cloud trunk .. my mom agreed, it was definitely an Elephant.
She was very good at encouraging a child's imagination. Even when she would say to someone, that child has Some Imagination !!  It was always a Good Thing.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Yes, I miss Buenos Aires ..

An Autumn Day in Buenos Aires.
Every day we would walk from our home to this area, maybe a 20 minute walk .. and buy scones, fresh from the oven.
Then we would sit in the park and have a scone, talk about the days plans then walk back home.
Buenos Aires does have its seasons , just a bit milder than where I have been used to .. NY.
I missed BA winters since I have been back in the US.
No fear of being buried in snow for weeks at a time.
No terrible bills from the gas/oil/heat people.
Even when you are all alone, when the weather is nice, you can be outdoors, out among other people.
Being snowed in for months or just staying indoors away from frostbite .. gets to be dreadful for a person alone.
I found that it took / has taken a while, to shake that off.
I am alone but not , now.
I am able to talk to people and see family or friends easily.
People are friendly here.
That is the way it was in Buenos Aires. People were friendly and warm and curious about Why we moved there .. and of course, everyone wanted to meet Tate , the Pup.
So .. yes, I miss Buenos Aires .

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Our Lady of Pilar

After reading comments in a previous posts about certain places in Buenos Aires, I thought I would post photos, so everyone can see what we were talking about :)

My home was on a wide boulevard that started at the end of the street where there were miles of fabulous parks and a few wonderful museums.
These were some of the sights along there ... in my neighborhood .

This is Our Lady of Pilar,  the second oldest church in Buenos Aires .. Franciscan to begin with.
There is a beautiful Cloister, the bells ring for all occasions and sometimes you can hear singing behind the high walls ... it is lovely.

Feline Tomfoolery

​I was getting ready to take a shower, beds made, cats fed and feeling the need for a cat nap .. all was quiet and peaceful.
Then Minette came into the room.

I accidentally kicked a little ball with a rattle inside ... the  Feline Futbol Game commenced !

It was hilarious, Merlin just watched, he said I'm too old for this tomfoolery.

I sat on the floor and cheered on the kitty, giving  applause at the appropriate moment and had a few laughs.

Merlin just closed his eyes and sighed .. 

Honey was too full of her breakfast ( and Merlins and Minettes) to do much more than roll over in the sun and nap some more.
Minette thought they were all Party Poopers but she took a nap and then climbed up on her Lookout point on the patio so she could keep an eye out for intruders.

* we have seen 1 armadillo and a few birds and one bright green snake so far *


I am the daughter of Earth and Water
And the nurseling of the Sky.
I pass through the pores of the ocean and shores
I change, but I cannot die.
For after the rain when with never a stain
The pavilion of Heaven is bare,
And the winds and sunbeams with their convex gleams
Build up the blue dome of air.
I silently laugh at my own cenotaph,
And out of the caverns of rain,
Like a child from the womb, like a ghost from the tomb
I arise and unbuild it again.

Percy Shelley

Friday, September 9, 2016

Just So Beautiful

I took this photo from my bedroom window a week ago. I am enchanted with the skies here .. I guess being near the ocean , I don't know, the air is so clean ? the skies are just so beautiful and the sunsets are amazing.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


Because of spammers, unsolicited personal advice and internet garbage, I have had to tighten up my comments section.
Anyone can comment, it just has to be seen by me before publishing.
Sorry, annoying, but that is the way it is.
Comments are always welcome, I love hearing from readers, but I really don't need anyone giving me advice on what I should do .. life-wise ... so thanks anyway .

Insane Kitten Alert

She is totally insane. I can swoop her up, making her catch her breath and bounce on the bed with her and she just purrs louder. She is the most fearless little cat I have ever had. or met !
She loves hiding behind things and attacking .. now that there is a new cat in the house... she seems to be getting braver. She attacks poor Merlin the most.
Honey would just thump her and she would be sorry.
Honey weighs about as much as 3 Minettes.
And being a plump kitty, Honey is calm, sweet and loves to nap .. with the stairs here, she is getting more exercise than she ever had so I am hoping she will slim down some ... better for her!
She is here, by my foot, sleeping.
I inherited her.
She adopted me.
Minette and Merlin seem to be perfectly fine with the whole business.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

I Want To Go Back ....

I want go back to Buenos Aires !
I want go shopping and see friends and family and buy shoes and listen to the music in the park and shop and eat helado ... chocolate helado ..

I need to see old friends.
 I need to see new things that have happened, been built, been removed, changed in the City.
I need to hear the music, wherever I go.
I need to spend a Sunday in the Feria in Recoleta, taking photos, listening in and seeing how much I still understand, enjoying myself.

I need to take a solitary walk through the Recoleta Cemetery.

I need to visit the places where my husband and I spent our time, enjoyed our lives, made such wonderful memories.

My list keeps growing, things to do, places to go, people to see ....

Music ... I need to hear the music. All you have to do is walk down a street, there will be music coming from somewhere .. I want to go to a concert .. I will stop and listen to the street musicians.
I will buy more to have for the days and years to come.

Food ... there really isn't any particular food that I miss. The helado (ice cream) is pretty good, the scones from our neighborhood bakery ( L'Epi ) were wonderful as was anything else they made ..
I would like a pizza. I don't like pizza. But I loved the thin crust pizza in Buenos Aires.

I would like to go to Felix ... Felix opened a tiny , really, tiny ... restaurant in Recoleta .. we walked over there in the afternoon, made reservations, went to the park with Pup.. had a lovely day .. that evening we had a nice walk to Felix where we ate a wonderful dinner and slowly walked home through the streets, late at night, with people still out in cafes and walking and enjoying the evening.

I want to buy shoes. I loved buying shoes in BA .. I love buying them anywhere but BA was so fun.
I am wearing my red ballet flats as I type.

I want to go to Puerto Madero. Sit at a table outside in one of the many cafes along the Waterfront.
Admire the city, the amazing skies and just soak it up, listen to the voices and languages and music.
Wherever you go .. there is the music.

I want to go to some of the places where we never got to visit, in all those years, we kept saying, next week or next month and time flew by and we never did it ..
I want to go back to San Isidro on a Sunday. To the Feria and mostly to take a walk in the area .. we talked about living there if we ever got proficient enough in Castellano.

I want to go to Tigre and go out on a riverboat. Just be out on the water for a few hours ..
See the homes above the water, see the birds ... Just Be There.

I daydream of renting a place, flying down with the cats and being a part timer.
I daydream about renting a place, flying down with the cats and deciding to stay.
Or at least come back and pack, then go back home to BA.

I think I will be taking classes soon .. I want to be better at my Castellano, even if I only get to go there one time for a few weeks ... It would be better for me, being alone .. I was never there alone.
But I won't really be alone, I have friends there ..
I used to be one of the people who lived there..

Friday, September 2, 2016

She Came and She Went

Oh that Hermine .. she was a sly one. No word of her, no hint she might want to visit, then suddenly that is all everyone could talk about.
Then she went from a "Tropical storm" to a bonafide "Hurricane" and they couldn't stop talking about her.
So much so that I was up late, talking madly to cats, frantically moving too heavy garden furniture into the living room, off the patio ... closing all shades and doors to rooms that were not going to be used for a day or so .. making my bedroom into Hurricane Avoidance Central.

This is the place you go to and know there is a Safe Place if things get scary .. My bathroom is huge and has a separate room inside it for the toilet and a closet for towels and linens and room for a terrified city slicker and her cats.

Minette is all eyes and ears and looking at everything.
Merlin is just sleepy and slow and purrs when I say his name.
Honey, my newly inherited baby cat ,the size of a small dog ..  doesn't want to be picked up, doesn't want to stay inside, doesn't want to share ... you know how that goes .. there is always one difficult child who just wants to be difficult.

So I made everyone Come To Bed With Mama and prayed for the best.

We all slept through the night like babies/kittens.
We all mosied downstairs when we made sure there were no odd noises, no storm sounds .. just quiet.

The inside of our home is perfectly fine ..
The lanai was wet in places where the rain blew in.
All furniture had been moved inside so it was a matter of letting the sun/wind dry it all and I dragged everything back out there and the cats joyously hopped onto their favorite pillows on their favorite chairs and took naps.

I just sat there and appreciated the sight of all those tall trees, still standing.
The sight and sound of a peaceful forest full of small creatures and the sun shining on all of it.

Big fat fluffy white clouds have come and gone all day.
Cats have napped/ are napping, I have managed to lower my stress levels by just being here, watching them, listening to the wind and watching the clouds skid across the blue blue sky.

Once again, All is well that ends well.

Hurricane Hermine

Hermine has been much talked about , at least on local news channels. I started to limit how much I listened to, trying not to get too anxious and afraid.
I live in a new home that should be up to all kinds of codes but it is also full of windows, walls of glass. With a pine tree forest out there ... tall pines.

The cats are not behaving like an animal that senses danger.
LOL ...
Nor am I.

I made sure all my plants and pots and furniture were inside, the patio / lanai is bare and empty and very confusing to a certain old cat who likes to go out, drink from the antique bird bath, that has become his favorite water source . His favorite chair is not there for his morning nap. One of his morning naps. Where is everything ?
He looks at me as if he has been betrayed and he slowly comes back in the house, bereft .. no matter how much explaining I do .. the word Hurricane means nothing ...
He just wants things to be exactly the same as always ... that makes him feel secure.

Minette is her usual little powerhouse, zooming around, checking on things, figuring out that the food in Merlins dish is better than hers ... the same exact identical food.. so she eats her breakfast and waits for the opportunity to dive into everyone else bowls too. Gorgeous little piggy.

And Honey ... Honey might be the size of a small dog but she has beautiful table manners.
She eats , then goes to take a nice bath and nap. She leaves everyone else alone and is grateful for a small snuggle or kisses .. then a nice nap.
She has learned what the important things in   life are.

I will just hope my power stays on, nothing falls on the condo and everyone stays safe...

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sunset in Buenos Aires