Squatting, It’s Not a Yoga Position

  I swore I wouldn’t post anything on my blog about squatters and squatting until our interminable legal case has been tried and a verdict rendered, but I couldn’t help myself this morning, and besides our case may outlive the Dickens’ Jarndyce v Jarndyce so I might as well forge ahead. Squatting in Costa Rica is aContinue reading “Squatting, It’s Not a Yoga Position”

Attacked by Gusanos!

“Edible: Good to eat and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man to a worm.” —Ambrose Bierce (The Devil’s Dictionary) For those of you who read this blog and live in northern urban centers, theContinue reading “Attacked by Gusanos!”

Hand Gestures, Costa Rican Style

Today, on our return from marketing, I saw a man on a bicycle greet a friend. As they passed, one gave the other the standard non-verbal Costa Rican howdy-do, a raised arm, in a sort of reverse chopping motion, a flick of the wrist, and the index finger snapped forward. It’s fluid and concise. IfContinue reading “Hand Gestures, Costa Rican Style”

Truck Trouble for the New Year

Our truck is 26 years old. It is a Jeep pickup and one tough vehicle. In fact, it’s the oldest vehicle still operating down here on this Atlantic coast, a place with punishing salt air that plays havoc with metal and all things electrical. Or, I should say, it was operating until the Saturday before NewContinue reading “Truck Trouble for the New Year”

Thoughts On Memoir and Angles of Repose

Finding the angle of repose, that easy place where story flows is no easy task. First, pour your heart out on the page until a pile forms— sufficient text for a memoir, say. (Example: if the memoir has 360 pages, write M=360) Using a life span and brutal honesty, measure the amount of truth versusContinue reading “Thoughts On Memoir and Angles of Repose”

Advent, Aguinaldos, Honest Mistakes, and 12-Step Reminders

We finally got a long-awaited appointment with the Agrarian Court justices in Limón two weeks before Christmas. We needed to discuss our case. It’s a long story, the subject of a memoir, actually, but you cannot write a memoir while you are still living the events. So, for the moment, it’s just life. I willContinue reading “Advent, Aguinaldos, Honest Mistakes, and 12-Step Reminders”

WNFIN, Dredging Up the Past, and Baking Literary Cakes

  “Writing or making anything—a poem, a bird feeder, a chocolate cake—has self-respect in it. You’re working. You’re trying. You’re not lying down on the ground, having given up.” ~ Sharon Olds   I have never done NaNo before, the national novel writing challenge that encourages people to write a novel in a month. I’dContinue reading “WNFIN, Dredging Up the Past, and Baking Literary Cakes”

Tribute to My Father (read by a friend today at his memorial service)

Morgan was not the easiest father in the world. My nephew, Joshua Reiss, once remarked when he was quite young, that there were two kinds of grandparents:  hard and easy. When Rosina asked him which she and Morgan were, Josh responded—and without hesitation, I might add— “hard grandparents.” But, the older Morgan got—or perhaps theContinue reading “Tribute to My Father (read by a friend today at his memorial service)”

Essay is Live at Blue Lyra Review

“The words a father speaks to his children in the privacy of the home are not overheard at the time, but, as in whispering galleries, they will be clearly heard at the end and by posterity.” -Jean Paul Richter, writer (1763-1825)   I am happy to announce that my short nonfiction essay, Death Comes Calling,Continue reading “Essay is Live at Blue Lyra Review”