Archive for July, 2011


I met Zoya two years ago when she was a few months old. Her mother lived next to Cascarabbias and I saw her one day as I was on a walk to admire Casca. She was so incredibly cute, I wanted to take her home with me. But I was living in San Miguel at the time and couldn’t. Anyway, I didn’t adopt her, and I never forgot her.

Recently, Fernando and I have been seeing her downtown. We surmised that her family did what many people do (mostly with female pups), and kicked her to the curb as soon as she grew out of the adorable puppy stage. Usually we bump into her at Embajadoras where she begs for scraps at the eateries there. We feed her and take her to a grassy area where she and Farley play. It’s so much fun to watch them chase each other. She walks home with us for more food and water, and then back to wherever she goes.

One morning, she was outside when I was leaving to take Farley on his morning walk. I took the dogs for a 90 minute hike behind the mountains where I live, between and beyond the two crosses and then back on the road that leads to the dam. They played the entire time, jumping in water and chasing each other up and down the hills. Everything was illuminated by the morning sun, and I could occasionally hear the bells of Guanajuato chiming in the distance. That was the day I fell in love with her.

Fernando and I have both been thinking that we would like to keep her, but we don’t have a yard, and our landlord won’t let us have two dogs. Maybe we’ll find a new place to live, one with a yard, but I don’t know… we’ve been looking for awhile, and nothing has turned up. One thing we plan on doing as soon as possible, is get her spayed before she starts producing litters, perpetuating the homeless dog population here which is difficult to see. We want to do this in the new few days.

So she’s here with us this weekend. Farley is limping along and happy to have a friend to roll around on the ground with. We’re keeping our curtains closed so nobody sees we’re harboring a beautiful lady who needs a little attention now, before things take a turn and she has to find scraps on the street for not only herself, but hungry babies.

I’ve named her Zoya, which is Ukrainian for Life.

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3 years

Today marks my third year anniversary of living in Mexico. Three years ago, Fernando and I embraced one another in the Cancun airport knowing that we wouldn’t have to say goodbye to one another again for a long time. It was a nice feeling to have some permanence with him when everything else—Where would we live? What would we do?—was beyond grasp… as if behind a veil of fog, waiting for us to step through and encounter it.

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Belen longshot

Here, I’m standing at the exit of Belen’s meat market, ready to go to the outside and check out all the fish.

In other news, Farley got bit today by a German Shepherd on our morning walk. So many people keep their dogs chained, or on roofs, or alone in their yard. In turn, the dogs turn mean and vicious. This particular dog was able to get a hold of Farley’s foot and face through the cracks in his fence. As much as I wanted to kick that dog in the teeth, I realize his aggressiveness is to due the ignorance and/or laziness of the owner. Anyway, Farley cried and cried and I gave him little hugs in the middle of the road as he held up his bleeding paw for me to look at while milking all my hugs.

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Painted on a wall along the boardwalk boulevard in Iquitos. I would replace the word tourism with terrorism.

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Blue Bowl Honey

This woman sold honey from a piece of a hive she carried around in her blue bowl. The bees were buzzing as she scooped out a spoonful of honey for me. I didn’t ask for a tester, but it was good!

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Trash fest

These vultures are on the other side of the boy flying the kite. The steps he stands on lead to this shanty town, Belen.

Belen sits on the banks of the Amazon. When the water rises, the stilted houses rest on the river. Trash moves in and vultures feast.

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Belen Kite

A boy flies a small, white kite on the steps that lead to the slums of Belen.

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