Book life comes full circle.
While book lovers all over the Internet are comparing modern times to George Orwell’s 1984, I was compelled to reread 2009’s The Return by Victoria Hislop. It’s a novel about Englishwoman Sonia, who is drawn to a cafe in Grenada, Spain. Through that, she learns much about herself and about Spain’s Civil War.
Sonia, our modern-day protagonist, leaves her stuffed-shirt husband at home to celebrate her best friend’s birthday in Spain for a few days. They book salsa classes in advance of the trip but Sonia is also drawn to flamenco. She is enraptured by some old flamenco posters at a cafe she happens upon. Miguel, the elderly cafe owner, takes a liking to Sonia, and she to him. Dance and the cafe become central to her visit. In the course of the novel it all ties together, even Miguel’s youthful involvement. Continue reading Returning To A Beloved Novel And Learning About Fascism
A snowy day is the perfect day to browse the archives for a shadowy Photo Challenge picture.
And what better than a tree looming over a normally busy street that was closed to accommodate a nearby summer street fair! Continue reading In the Shade of a Shadow Tree
Atlantic City ‘s Art Walk is well worth a visit.
The mile-long path borders marshland in the Marina District, crosstown from the Boardwalk that we usually associate with AC. On one side of the path is beautiful shoreline, which is desolate in the winter. The paved path undulates like the shoreline it follows. Continue reading Shoreline Solitude in Atlantic City
About 399,999 protesters and I shut down Midtown.
I attended the Women’s March on New York City with a friend and the Center for the Women of New York. We assembled in a midtown hotel lobby where I bought a commemorative pin and sash from the Center; they need the money and I wanted a memento that I can use again. I helped myself to complimentary coffee as added fuel. Continue reading Not Being Silent: The March on New York City
I’ve been trying to write a sweet post about decorating with light for the past week. But the inauguration had me too sad for pretty word pictures.
I wanted to show how I used a combination of tealight candles, battery-operated candles and battery-operated Christmas lights to transform the dark end of my living room. I wrapped bright lights around the top of my decorative lighthouse and I like it so much, it will stay that way all year long. It seemed appropriate to create my own personal beacon. Light is safety; it prevents bumps and bruises. Light shows what things really look like; a truly lit object will show its details and flaws. Continue reading The Light At The End…
New York City is five counties of unique areas that need names, as well as addresses, to locate. They are worth the hunt.
They are so wholesome that they opened this shop immediately after last year’s blizzard. The hearty lamb meat pie was delicious. Continue reading Naming In New York
It’s been a mild winter so far here in New York, but we all know the snow is inevitable. Continue reading Winter Resilience And Fun
Christmas is eagerly anticipated worldwide right now. In my corner of the planet, I am also looking forward to the results of renovations on my apartment building.
The modernization started about a year ago and I see beautiful new workmanship every day. Dated pink wallpaper was replaced with serene, sensible beige. Moldings were added with drops a few inches from the ceiling to hide cable wires. The elevators were replaced with taller, safer ones. Marble flooring is being installed, which actually worries me: the inevitable icy winter weather will cause wet, slick floors. And you really don’t want to slip on marble. Continue reading Anticipating Christmas and The End Of Renovations
Midlife is a strange and exciting time to be job-eliminated.
I had a lifetime of caring for other people (I am the oldest of five so the responsibilities started early.) I can now sensibly think of shifting gears and earning a living at work that I love. But what? Continue reading New Horizons: Things Are Looking Up
I have a love/hate relationship with gift cards. Yes, they are convenient and show the recipient some consideration.
The bank or retailer is holding on to your money until the card is redeemed. Not only are you lending them your cash for free, but banks actually charge you for the privilege. Hey, at least throw in some nice packaging! So as a public service, I visited local retailers and gathered some helpful intel: Continue reading Which Gift Cards Are Worth Buying?
The calendar and political climate have caused New York’s Union Square to make dramatic changes in just the past two weeks. Politics and the holiday shopping season collide.
Many gathered at the park to speak of their discomfort with the presidential election results. It was a friendly scene; I thanked one speaker for urging protesters to select one thing to be activist about rather than be overwhelmed by the big picture. This turned into a casual conversation between two people who were, clearly, older than most of the rest of the attendees. This is Union Square at 14th Street on November 10: Continue reading Union Square’s Seasonal Transformation
I suspect every American knows that the best thing about Thanksgiving is the leftovers.
The sheer amount of food on the holiday can be overwhelming, especially if you are hosting and have to figure out where to put ALL THAT FOOD. Continue reading Bonding Over Thanksgiving Leftovers
Distracting myself from 24/7 news coverage of the U.S. presidential election with this picture of apples and a pear. I couldn’t resist the tiny ones at the farmer’s market; they were so cute! Continue reading Cheerful Little Apples
President-elect Reality Show Host has shown open disdain for Hispanics, and that doesn’t bode well for me. Long ago it was preferable to “pass” for an another ethnic group rather than look Spanish. I can but have enough self-respect to answer honestly. “What is your heritage?” “What is your ethnic group?” “Are you [fill in locally acceptable nationality here.]?” Hispanic. Continue reading It’s No Longer Enough To Be Born In America: A Midlife Hispanic View of the American Presidential Election
New York Suffragists
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.
That’s the simple beauty of the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, granting women the right to vote. It was ratified in 1920, meaning that there are women alive today who were born before they had that right.
Continue reading Breaking Fashion Rules to Celebrate My Right to Vote
This year, my sister and niece are organizing a new way of exchanging Christmas gifts, and I couldn’t be happier.
Each family member over high school age buys one gift valued at up to $50.00 and brings it wrapped. Each recipient will be assigned a number. Number one selects first, number two second, and so on. You get the gift associated with that number or you can “steal” a gift that has already been opened. I’m not sure if that would be funny or cause some sore feelings, but I’ll go with the flow.
Our family members in the scheme will range from college age up to, well, me. Boys and girls. We are neither fancy nor cute, mostly suburban working class. And after some retail research, here are some ideas: Continue reading Holiday Gift Shopping Made Easy
On a bright day with shiny blue skies, an ordinary office building becomes a grid for the surrounding trees and parking lot.
From the third floor, those cars look like art: