I got two coins in my change last Thursday at the feria. They are the same diameter, though one is slightly thinner. Here the thinner one is on the left. It’s quite plain, not at all distinctive, and just looks cheap compared to the one on the right. When you flip them over, the distinctive one clearly states its value. The other you really have to take into bright light (as I did for the picture) in order to read. Yes, that wretched coppery coin is…Continue Reading “The coin nobody wants”

We were working feverishly at our chacra (mini-farm, 14 acres with small house) in preparation for the arrival of a tenant, the second Canadian-dwelling family member of Germany-Russian neighbors who really wanted to rent. Alas, also the second Canadian-dwelling family member of Germany-Russian neighbors who cancelled his trip at the last minute. (Can you guess to whom we won’t be offering to rent in the future?) I thought it a good idea to flush the rooftop water tank (which overflows back into the well) by letting the…Continue Reading “The Great Backhoe Heist”

Knowing my fondness for quirky Uruguayan handwriting, Syd sent along this gem: 1 something times maybe 20, or 20 liters, and one of the worst attempts at a 9 that I’ve seen yet. His annotations are in dark red, but why stop there? What’s with the month scribble? And since when is a 7 simply a crossed 1? What’s starting to make sense is that this handwriting actually mirrors the way many Uruguayans speak. Not all, but many, especially the important people like electricians, mechanics, and…Continue Reading “Starting to make sense?”

This morning, in my maybe-sorta dare-you-to-grow garden, an ambitious squash plant aspires to — what? A penthouse apartment in the avocado trees? Most noteworthy about this image is what it lacks: shadows. After weeks of blistering sun, the temperature dropped dramatically overnight (90s – 70s F, 30s – 20s C). Unlike the last few weeks of forecast nonexistent thunderstorms, this time they got it right. We’re delighted, though reminded that *sigh* winter in Uruguay comes not far behind.