Monday, November 29, 2010

The day after Sunday

Yesterday may have been the laziest Sunday of my entire life, which included reading an entire Carl Haissen book I'd gotten from the library. A new Hiassen? A lazy day? It's like sushi and wasabi for me.

But finally, enough slugdom. Peeling away the cat, I took a walkabout  (ok, I walked around for awhile and then I couldn't turn down a ride to town), checking out bits and pieces of Culebra along the way. Town was quiet, after a busier weekend than we've seen in quite awhile. The rental car lots were full instead of empty, with holidayers returning their vehicles and heading back to their lives, hither and yon. Y'all come back now, hear? We'll be right where you left us.

The sun is out, the day is still new. Happy Monday!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

All is calm, all is bright

A Saturday morning with a Sunday feeling, following in the string of beautiful days like water droplets on cobwebs. Go take a walk in your yard, or around your block. See what you see. Shhhhhh...

Friday, November 26, 2010

Free Range Friday - Post Tryptophan Day

Feeling lazy after the big dinner preparation, friends and family gathering, early in the day late into the afternoon eating fest? Blame it on Tryptophan or just plain old wornoutness, there are some easy ideas for those space taking leftovers...

From Pham Fatale, a Shepard's Pie that reinvents yesterday's meal into something comforting and wonderful. From Closet Cooking, a slew of ideas from turkey sandwiches with cranberry sauce (and I will dearly miss mine, delivered by Ann, but 'this is a year like no other year') to turkey white chili to turkey pho.

I chose to not take any leftovers, too full in belly and eyes to even think about more food, despite the goodness of Lorraine's turkey and sides, , Ann's salad, Jane's flan, Teresa's stuffing, Peri's Death by Chocolate cake, my mashed potatoes and more. Instead, we loaded up a plate for Karen, who spent a beautiful day being too unwell to play with anything but the cats. Get better, Karen!

The sun shone, the water danced, the dogs chased and retrieved 2 x 4 drifters. We ate and drank and talked and laughed. Kai and Susan enjoyed the sea water while the rest of us were lazy in the shade. A good day. Another Thanksgiving on was done, gone the sun.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

So much to be thankful for!

This morning I woke up on the hilltop (house/dog/cat sitting) to a perfectly outrageous sunrise. Outside the wind was blowing and at 6 in the morning one of the churches was loud with singing (good music! happy music!), which was weirdly wonderful as the sun crested the horizon.

For some reason, the one thought clear in my head this morning was Walt Whitman. Now, I confess, I don't often think of Mr. Whitman (I'm more prone to associate the name with chocolate - the ones my sister would prod and poke and leave if not filled with her desired choice) and I have no idea why he was in my mind, but to honor that thought, here is a poem he wrote that seems right for this morning. Thanksgiving is, of course, an American holiday, full of myth and untruths, but it remains my favorite holiday because what's not to like about being thankful? And I am often overflowing with thanks, because after all, I am the Luckiest Woman in the World. America is in another wrenching convolution of its existence, in my opinion. Yet, I am thankful. Traveling its width this summer I fell back in love with the sheer beauty of the country I was born in. So take a good look around you all passes away eventually, but we do have now. Thankfully.

Unnamed Land by Walt Whitman

Nations ten thousand years before these States, and many times ten
thousand years before these States,
Garner'd clusters of ages that men and women like us grew up and
travel'd their course and pass'd on,
What vast-built cities, what orderly republics, what pastoral tribes
and nomads,
What histories, rulers, heroes, perhaps transcending all others,
What laws, customs, wealth, arts, traditions,
What sort of marriage, what costumes, what physiology and phrenology,
What of liberty and slavery among them, what they thought of death
and the soul,
Who were witty and wise, who beautiful and poetic, who brutish and
Not a mark, not a record remains--and yet all remains.
O I know that those men and women were not for nothing, any more
than we are for nothing,
I know that they belong to the scheme of the world every bit as much
as we now belong to it.
Afar they stand, yet near to me they stand,
Some with oval countenances learn'd and calm,
Some naked and savage, some like huge collections of insects,
Some in tents, herdsmen, patriarchs, tribes, horsemen,
Some prowling through woods, some living peaceably on farms,
laboring, reaping, filling barns,
Some traversing paved avenues, amid temples, palaces, factories,
libraries, shows, courts, theatres, wonderful monuments.
Are those billions of men really gone?
Are those women of the old experience of the earth gone?
Do their lives, cities, arts, rest only with us?
Did they achieve nothing for good for themselves?
I believe of all those men and women that fill'd the unnamed lands,
every one exists this hour here or elsewhere, invisible to us.
In exact proportion to what he or she grew from in life, and out of
what he or she did, felt, became, loved, sinn'd, in life.
I believe that was not the end of those nations or any person of
them, any more than this shall be the end of my nation, or of me;
Of their languages, governments, marriage, literature, products,
games, wars, manners, crimes, prisons, slaves, heroes, poets,
I suspect their results curiously await in the yet unseen world,
counterparts of what accrued to them in the seen world,
I suspect I shall meet them there,
I suspect I shall there find each old particular of those unnamed lands.

p.s. A big thankfulness from me for all who read this blog and support me with encouragement, new ideas, and thoughtful comments via the written word and / or seeing you in person, strangers and friends. And strangers who become friends  (yes, yes, and for all my friends who are just strange...hush now!)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Quick Thanksgiving Dinner Update! Pies!

At the cart this morning, Chris came up and told me I had to go look at Digna's island cranberries, that they were so beautiful I should get a photo of them. Island cranberries? I'd never heard of them. He manned the cart and I crossed the bridge to see these wonderous berries. And there they were, like tiny peaches...glowing, just like Chris said they were! Digna couldn't believe I'd never seen or tasted one, so I got to try a couple of them...sweet but more tart, they were delicious and I could only imagine how fine they would be in the baked goodie she had planned. It will be at El Batey tomorrow, along with the smoked turkeys Tomasito will be making in the smoke pit. Yum! I might have to have two dinners tomorrow...

Pies, anyone? One day only!

Later on I was looking down the street and Jacinto and Kate's brother (the artist behind Rigausol Art) were putting up the new sign for Susie' could I resist?
First of the season gratuitous Jacinto cute butt shot (of course there will be more!)
What a beautiful sign!!!

Turkey day is almost here, that must mean the Culebra Turkey Race!

Daphne didn't want to stop running...ever!
Of course, I, as usual, didn't know the race was going on (when the announcement truck came by my house yesterday, he was humming a tune and then was too far away to hear anything he was saying - nice tune though). Luckily I stumbled across it as I was heading home from town, but missing the best part...the children running. There sure were a lot of them and that was wonderful to see! As for the adults, they were still coming in, but I missed Raquel's winning, Monika second and Kelly third for the women, along with our usual athlete star winning the men's, with Lawrence second and Jim third. I think that's how it went anyway. The no-see-ums came out in force and I headed into the wind before the turkey presentations. Sorry about that!.

A great crowd of friends and families
Can you spot the winner of the men's race in this photo?
Yesterday started with rain but soon moved back to glorious blue, sunny skies with a lot of wind. Mid-morning saw a couple of critters hiding out from the sunshine. See the notch on the cat's ear? That means it is fixed, no more kitties from this one! Susie and Jacinto take care of a lot of cats that don't have 'formal' homes, getting them spayed and neutered as well as feeding and watering them every day. For them and the many others who do the same for animals in their own neighborhoods, I give thanks. The chickens are on their own!


It looks like another gorgeous day as we approach our day of Thanks around here. Melones, 2 p.m. if you don't have somewhere else to go (and there are quite a few choices, Dinghy Dock, Mamacita's, Susie's to name a few) - bring a dish, savory or sweet, your favorite beverage of choice, some mosquito coils would be a good idea just in case, and maybe some beach chairs if you have them. There are tables there, but as usual, the head count is elusive, so best to over prepare.

Have a windy Wednesday! We will. Start counting your blessings wonderful!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Culebra Odds and Ends

First, thank you to those who have written with offers of help, including donations, along with positive feedback and encouragement concerning Marsha's cats and Animal Welfare of Culebra. Each caring person means a lot and on behalf of AWC, here is one expression of thanks! The job isn't even close to done, but having hope is huge. Again, time is running very short; if you come up with one home for one cat, you've saved a life and enriched a home.

Some announcements here on a couple of local businesses! D's Garden, our wonderful nursery, now located down the street opposite from Genesis (take that street and go around to the end, and there she is) ready to make your holidays brighter! She is open Wednesdays to Saturday, 9-3. The phone # 787-435-9844. 

"I also have poinsettias baskets $13.00 red, basket of three color red/white/pink $14.00,  6" pot red $4.00.  Every month I will have a different type of sale."

Diane will let me know about the sale plants and I'll pass them along here. Check it out!

Smoke Tender Wow is going to be serving breakfast on the ferry dock! Breakfast burritos, anyone? Eggs and smoked meat sound good to me, or maybe a sandwich on homemade bread. There will also be sticky buns. Don't know what a sticky bun is? Go down to the dock and find out for yourself. French press coffee  and Old Fashioned sodas will also be available.

The 7 day a week hours are: Sunday - Wednesday 6 a.m. to 8:30 p.m,
                                            Thursday - Saturday 6 a.m. to 12:00

Full Moon parties included! Oops, missed that one! Pictures to come, just as soon as I get down to the ferry at 6:00 a.m. in need of a burrito... You can find Smoke Tender Wow on Facebook, if you like.

Susie's opens Wednesday! New and old mix on the menu, come see what she's doing in the kitchen this year! For a sample of what's on the menu (with more to be added), here is her website.

And, by the way...I've heard a number of people have canceled their holidays here because of the news about the ferry's and planes. It's not perfect yet (it never WAS perfect, we live on a freakin' island, for goodness sake), but the ferry's are running, planes are flying and people are getting here and out on a pretty good schedule, so pass the word. CNN spread the bad news, now it's time to spread the present reality!

I'm not JUST about announcing things for cats, plants and food, but that's it for now; something to chew on while you have your morning eye-opener of choice on this windy (here) morning. I think the rain might be done for the day...we'll see what happens next.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

One of the Paradox's of Paradise. You can help.

I am once again posting this , not only for Teresa, but for these animals who have known only two things in their lives, first, abandonment and then love, every time Marsha opened her door, her pocketbook and her and Ren's hearts to take them in. Now some of them are knowing an intensely  cruel death, by poisoning. Please read the following and if there is ANYthing you can do, suggest or encourage others to do to help give these cats happy, loving homes, contact Teresa or you can respond here and I'll pass it along. Thank you! MJ

Hi everyone, am sorry to report that we have lost more cats at Marsha's house.  As I'm sure that most of you know by now, homes are urgently needed for them. 

Poisoning causes a horrible death that we have not been able to stop in Culebra and we greatly fear for the lives of the remaining cats.  We are asking for your help in contacting all of your friends and associates to see if they would be willing to provide a
home for some that are great pets and/or others that are great mousers for yard/grounds duty!  The cats are being taken care of and fed twice daily, and continue to receive Tender Loving Care as much as is
possible. But Marsha and Ren's house is going to be vacated in December and the situation is becoming more urgent with each
passing day.  And the poisoning situation won't wait until December, it takes lives at every opportunity.

These are beautiful adult cats with wonderful personalities and sweet dispositions.  All have been spay/neutered and given veterinary care.They deserve to live full lives, and if we all spread the word about this wonderful cat adoption opportunity, then I am sure that we will succeed in finding homes for them.

If you know of any of your friends either here or in the states that might be looking for a cat, please ask them to consider one of these. I have photos and history of all of them.  Some are indoor-outdoor cats, some prefer to be outdoor all of the time.  Most of them like to be around other cats and some are better than others around dogs.
Most are absolutely wonderful with children. They are affectionate and eagerly seek a kind gesture, a loving scratch behind the ear, and sometimes also a lap to sit in!  A few are still a little new at the "pet" concept and would make terrific farm or yard guardians,helping tremendously with rodent control.

Please open your hearts and help with this situation.  Just a phone call or a reminder to your friends can reap incredible results.  Most of the Culebra dog and cat adoption
successes are the results of casual conversations and unplanned networking, so imagine what all of us acting together can do!

Thank you for any and all help or suggestions.  For information on any of the cats or to arrange a visit to meet them, please contact me via cell or email.. 787-409-6380 and

With sincere gratitude,
Teresa, on behalf of  Animal Welfare of Culebra.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Do you know where your thoughts come from?

"If you can influence the leaders, either with or without their conscious cooperation, you automatically influence the group which they sway." Edward Bernays

Have you heard of Edward Bernays? Dubbed the 'Father of Spin' he was one of the first to start the now multi-faceted field of public relations. If you take a moment to consider  why you think the way you do about...well, anything, from what you eat, to clothes you wear, to the way you vote, consider what the man who launched a thousand products (yes, I'm exaggerating, no, I might as well not be exaggerating) had to say about how we perceive our world. What does this have to do with Culebra? Think about it.

"If we understand the mechanisms and motives of the group mind, it is now possible to control and regiment the masses according to our will without their knowing it," he argued in Propaganda, one of his first books. In a later book, he coined the term "engineering of consent" to describe his technique for controlling the masses.
"The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society," Bernays argued. "Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. . . . In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons . . . who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind."

Here are some ads from, incredibly, not that long ago. Compare them to what you see on television today, from commercials, to nightly 'news', to products, to politics...where is YOUR *truth* coming from? Just a thought...

Thank you, Mr. President! You look dashing!

They'd walk a mile for a Camel...if they could

Absolutely safe! Papa said so! Oops, my doll is dead, Papa!

(don't do it!!! Soon you'll be opening everything! Let the big strong man do it)

The dentist thanks's that diabetes thing going for you?

A sure and certain way indeed...


Smoke for the children's sake!

Lucky they are easy to swallow, Friends for a Fair Form, I hated that spaghetti slurp thing I used to have to do.

A quiet baby is a Blazt'd baby!

I can't even comment on this no, not good for me to go there

It's amazing that men just don't wear ties in bed anymore...

Love my Bloody Mary's...that's what alcohol is for

Damn, I didn't even know you could

have a cigarette hangover! 
Thanks, Ricky and Lucy!

A composed and useful life...hmm, do you have to be a senior to get this? Do I need a cane?

Hell yes, I'm thriving! And I'm cute! Darn cute! I'm high as a kite! I LOVE dusting, and anything else I can do because I haven't sat still in 3 years!! Is that lint on your suit? I hope your boss is coming to dinner because I just made a 74 course meal! Kellogg's! You did pick up the Kellogg's, right??

Thanks for the ads, Lorraine! Of course, my twisted mind took them somewhere else completely. Did ANYone ever think that Chase & Sanborn ad wasn't just a wee bit kinky?