Archive for September, 2014

IB Bremen lunch

Lovely Mild Weather, Wonderful People, Four-Legged Lilliputians, Printmaking and Painting

More than anything else I wanted to paint this summer. Though I’ve made my living for many years doing printmaking, a painter has to paint. So I made up my mind to devote this summer to oils and pigments on canvas. In the end it was an eventful summer–including a brush fire that ravaged 2,000 acres of foothills just four kilometers down the valley from us. And, thanks to an old friend who showed up unexpectedly I even managed to squeeze in some painting.

May at Our House

The month of May in Granada is quite summery, at least by English standards. This one was made memorable for me by the Toronto artist, Jennifer Morgan, who wrote to ask if I could mount a one-day workshop for her and six other members of her family. Nobody had ever requested anything like that before but I said sure, we’d give it a try. The Morgan family solarplate experience turned out to be a big success, thanks in large part to the uniformly high level of artistic talent of Jennifer’s entire family, starting with her mother, the Canadian novelist Bernice Morgan.

Then mid-month Mike finally got to meet Patricia Wood-Wynn from the Spanish Tourist Office in Chicago. They had exchanged emails for a couple of years but had never met till she showed up in Granada shepherdessing a group of American travel writers. The evening before they arrived Mike took Patricia and a reporter who arrived early for beer and tapas at one of the sidewalk cafes on the Paseo de los Tristes (“Melancholy Walk” because it used to be the path up to the Granada cemetery.) The terrace is located directly beneath the Alhambra fortress and palace, perched high on the opposite side of the Río Darro. The monument–lit up on summer nights–made a profound impression on the two midwestern girls, who kept repeating: “I can’t believe I’m sitting here in Granada right underneath the Alhambra!” (more…)

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Dolly Brown

Maureen and Cuca’s July

July was full of surprises. After two months of what we assumed was a false pregnancy our nine-year-old Shih Tzu bitch, Cuca, gave birth to her first-ever litter, two lovely female puppies. We named them Dolly Brown and Pony. This birth, we are told, is the equivalent of a 55-year-old woman having her first child. In two-and-a-half short months Dolly and Pony have developed from a couple of blind worms, capable only of sucking and sleeping, into semi-professional hell raisers adept at harrassing the cats, digging up flower beds and chewing up anything that even remotely resembles a shoe. That is to say, they are a delightful addition to our family, providing untold joy every day. Pony is more Shih Tzu and Dolly (above) more terrier so, as you can understand, we’re obliged to keep them both.

While we’re on the subject of pets, do you remember Rosie, the pussy from the pantry? She had her first litter, too, just a couple of weeks before Cuca, so her two kittens, Alley and Dolly Black, can run a bit faster and jump a lot higher than the pups. Lucky for them.


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