The summer scene

WE’RE WELL into summer, and every year or two I like to take a photo from the upstairs terraza to show changes in the Hacienda compound.* One shot, years back, showed a place in progress, rather bare.

But this is 2014’s scene, fully developed:


And looking down to the left. The nopal tree is at least 13 feet tall, and the bananas are even higher. On the far side of the ochre wall is the sex motel:


Now doing a full turn to the right, out toward the back. That angled tile roof behind the red wall is relatively new. That’s where I keep the lawn mower and garden gear:


Abel, the deadpan neighbor who cuts the grass every Saturday morning, had done just that about an hour before the photos were taken. I planted 95 percent of what you see with my own grubby fingers.

I like living here. You really can’t beat it.

* * * *

* Yes, compound. I like to think I’m kinda like the Kennedys. Or the Bushes of Kennebunkport.

Life’s compromises


Missus Bones hides between the datura and the bananas.

Can you see her?

When it started raining a few weeks ago, we heard excitement in the yard, a sort of frenzy. Everyone was speaking at once, from the worms to the grass to the fruiting trees to the birds, even the snails and the stone sidewalk.

Missus Bones, however, kept her own counsel. She does not chatter.

This photo is a surrender of mine. Shortly after Easter, when Google put a picture of César Chávez on their home page to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, I grew so incensed at the Leftist effrontery that I erased most every aspect of Google from my computer, and that included Picasa.

I found a decent, free (because I am cheap) alternative called IrfanView, which I have been using since Easter. But it just ain’t the same, so I have ignored my principles and returned to Picasa. I should be ashamed of myself.

Life entails compromises, sometimes smelly ones.