I gave my card to Debby

Not little Debby, the face of bad pastry. Debby, the Croatian immigre to Montreal, the barista who saw me standing outside her little coffee shop and brought a treat out for our dog and an offer to bring him inside. “We’re pet friendly,” she said. Truer words. Debby loves dogs and took our passage as opportunity to lavish a little love (OK, a LOT of love) on Satchel. “I love animals,” she says, squatting next to Satch and stroking his […]

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For a great haircut

I went to Lagos, Portugal, and got a the best haircut I’ve gotten in years. I won’t say I went to Lagos to get a haircut, but I did go to Lagos, and I did need a haircut, so I started looking for a barber. Barber shops appear fequently along the sidewalks of Portugal. Prices are cheap. The local men look trim and neat. A perfect chance, as they say, to sample the local wares. Not, in noting this, to […]

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Last thoughts of persons victimized by the charitable impulse to share some scraps

On the off-chance that this document survives what now appears inevitable, I want you to know that it all occurred not out of malice, nor with any indifference to the slippery slope that begins with simple charity, but simply because we couldn’t resist feeding the little kitty. It’s not fashionable for a guy – a non-gay guy, that is – to admit having a soft spot for cats. It’s why I’ve had dogs for years. I know, the cynics among […]

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Start walking, keep walking and don’t stop walking until you are full

How can anyone experience anything of a place at the speed of auto-motion? Cars and buses are great for moving us from Point A to Point F and quickly past Points B, C, D and E. What do we know of the in-betweens after we arrive at F? “Who cares; we were going to F.” Sometimes, if we have a broken wrist and F is he hospital, we don’t give a rat’s ass about B, C, D and E. Just […]

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Collectivos, buses provide cheap transit path to rich Oaxaca experience

With three weeks remaining on our two-month stay in Oaxaca, I took a collectivo out to the airport yesterday. “A what?” you ask. It’s a local transit option, a little bit taxi, a little bit bus, and a whole lot more. The driver asked me where I was going after I reached the airport, on the assumption that I must be flying. Nope, I told him, just picking up a rental car. As I spoke with him, it struck me […]

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Waiting on a shaky premise for the garbage man to come

Streaks of apricot light dance above the eastern horizon, a band plays somewhere down below, and fireworks pock the Oaxaca dawn as I haul the garbage can down free-form concrete pavement one block to the corner, and grab a seat on the curb. It’s 6:30 a.m., 13 days before Christmas, and I’m waiting for the garbage truck. In pidgin conversations with our lovely neighbor, Celia, I’ve learned (I think) that the troca de basura will arrive at 6:30 this Saturday […]

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July 2021