May 17, 2015
I am still home alone even though I get visits from Yovany. Good thing I enjoy my own company ;-). Gary and Paul seem to be having a great time traveling together back in the U.S. and presenting their business plan to different contacts that they have made. They finished the cruise and are staying at Paul’s house in Walnut, California. Gary told me he is getting fat from eating all the good food on the cruise and at various restaurants. Should be fun to pick on him about that when he gets back! He should be home on May 23rd.
It has been raining steadily most afternoons and the seedlings are starting. In fact, it is 12:30 pm and it just started pouring rain. Thank goodness this shed roof is fairly new and I stay totally dry! Many of the seeds we brought didn’t sprout so we will be replanting things in the bald spots with fresher seeds. The corn and the squash are growing very quickly though. The radishes, beans (many different kinds), fenugreek, and many of my herbs are coming along nicely. I spend 2-4 hours daily weeding and/or planting manicillo.
Yovany and I walked the other morning. He got a clipping of a neighbor’s rose bush since he knows I like flowers. He also picked me an aster-type flower. When we got back to the farm he cut the long rose stem into three pieces and stuck them in the ground in my garden. He also stuck the aster cutting right in the dirt. The roses are starting to sprout already!
The farmers around here have a kind of yodel that they use when they want to signal to each other from long distances. Anyway, one day after listening to Yovany and some uncle in the distance yodeling to each other I chimed in with a yodel of my own . It’s the Tarzan call that Carol Burnett used to do on her variety show years ago, only my rendition is rather pathetic ;-). Yovany seems to like it though and he will try to get me going by doing the Tarzan call himself (he knows who Tarzan is)……
I don’t have to worry about anyone sneaking up on me while I am here alone. The dogs are a fail-safe alarm system. And the Latinos are terrified of Courage unless they see him off the chain and see how much calmer he is when not restricted. The indigenous people also maintain their distance when they see the dogs. One fellow who walked by when we were camping on the coffee plantation said, “That dog could rip your throat out!”.
Courage is a bit too strong for me to handle since he is a very friendly boy but he gets over-exuberant. He could rip your arm out of the socket if he decided to take off after something while walking him on a leash. Gary handles him most of the time. Courage just loves to be with people and prefers to be in the house right next to me rather than outside. He shoves his nose into my stomach or my crotch to ask for a scratch. And he makes no apologies for his brashness. Suni prefers to gaze out at the land and watch for things to bark at. She is more submissive and easy to manage. Both dogs get so excited when Beto and Yovany walk by that they get crazy with excitement and it is hard to calm them down. Beto pets and plays with Courage. Yovany is slowly getting more at ease but is still very leery of the big bruiser. Yovany does take Suni for walks on a leash occasionally. They both seem to enjoy that.
One day last week, the dogs were outside and I heard a bit of a ruckus outside…like heavy scraping of chain. I rushed out to see Courage sitting on the porch with his chain still on. I looked over the edge of the porch and I was horrified to see that the drill press that had been sitting on the deck was now totally dangling over the edge where it was suspended on Courage’s chain! This piece of machinery must be 40 or 50 lbs and I had a hard time unlinking the chain to release Courage. You wouldn’t have known there was anything wrong just to see Courage sitting there. The large weight didn’t phase him much. He is definitely sled dog material!!
Since I can’t drive the deuce ( I wouldn’t want to on our dangerous, rough roads in this village) I am kinda stuck here until Gary gets back. The hour walk to the bus stop is fairly steep and so I wouldn’t be able to carry the supplies that I need back to the farm. I need cracked corn, rice, cooking oil and a 40 lb bag of dog food among other things. I have been making cornmeal mush or rice for the dogs and mixing it with a bit of cooking oil, sardines if I have them, or I put in a handful of dry dog food. I have been rationing things so I can hold out until this weekend.
I have been watching movies (that Gary’s son put on a hard drive for me) and reading. I try to work on Spanish at least a little bit every day. It is still coming along slower than I would like. Maybe others find it easier but it is not an easy thing for me to learn a new language. I just keep plugging along, trying not to be too hard on myself, just knowing that eventually it will get easier and easier if I just keep at it. Maybe the brain synapses don’t fire off as much after you get past 50!
Until next time…