Thursday, May 20, 2010

Marcelo's Island - A Short, Illustrated Story

Gastón invited us to his friend Marcelo's island.

So now Nile has been in a car, on a plane, in a boat ... we will have to take her on a train soon.

We rode in Marcelo's speedboat about 20 minutes to the island. The island is in Tigre, off the coast northwest of the city and at the confluence of the river and ocean.
Gastón, Marcelo and some other guests had spent the night on the island and made the trip back to pick us up for the day.

Capitán Marcelo.

At one point we could see the Buenos Aires city skyline in the distance.

As we approached the island, we were greeted at the pier by Marcelo's dogs, Cocoa ("Co-CO-ah") and Alfonsita, a.k.a. "Foo-fee."

Foo-fee is Cocoa's mother. She has borne 60 puppies in her life, and has a very strong maternal instinct. She displayed it toward the cat, trying to get it to nurse on her (!) and when I was nursing Nile, she stood protectively by me, barking at Cocoa to get him to take his solicitations for petting elsewhere.

Also, the wind had been up during the night and had brought the tide so high that it had flooded the yard.

Jose, the groundskeeper (above), walked Nile across first to entrust her to the care of the waiting houseguests.

He returned with a pair of rainboots and we each took a turn wearing them to wade across to the house.

A couple hours later, the water had receded to reveal the yard.

Marcelo (and Cocoa in the background) surveying the grounds.

The garden has this pretty fountain imported -- like many Argentines themselves, including Marcelo's family -- from Italy.

The property has the most beautiful flowers, true "late bloomers," as it is nearly winter here in the Southern Hemisphere.

"Solanas" is the name of Marcelo's place.

The backyard was still flooded, but it eventually drained before we left.

One thing you don't know about me (except for you, Mom and Dad) is that I have an uncanny ability to find four-leaf clovers in virtually any clover patch.

Nile slept ALL DAY. She would seem semi-conscious like here, where she is smiling, but she kept her eyes shut. She is so sweet. And portable, for now :)

Jose prepared the asado (bbq) in this nifty mud oven. It is not the typical Argentine parilla, which is more of a grill. Marcelo made this oven himself with mud from the earth on his island mixed with ash from the parilla.


Just when I thought we had the most delicious spread in front of us ...

... Jose added this huge tray of awesomeness to the table. The meat you see with the rib bones is a cut called "asado," (confusing because "asado" is also the name for a bbq in general). Let me just say that  "asado" was the most AMAZING meat I have EVER tasted. It was so flavorful and totally tender, cut-able with a fork. It had a lot of fat on it that just melted in your mouth! I mean, I was consciously eating chunks of deliciously flavorful, oily fat, that were SO amazing, I am dreaming about it right now.

The ducks swam around as late afternoon slipped away to evening.

 We said goodbye to Cocoa.

And Princesa, the cat.

Night fell early.

The ducks were asleep.

We sped, noisily, reggaetón blaring, through the night toward the lights of the city.

The boat was put away and we went home.


a mermaid said...

I hate it when people punctuate after every word for emphasis, but,

ARE. YOU. KIDDING. ME. !!!!!!!

This is all in a days fun for the Waltons. Your life is so unreal. It's fun to be included like this.

Wouldn't it be fun if you printed this up in a little story book for Nile to read? DO IT! :)

Bfiles said...

have to comment on all these posts.

how awesome was this! I loved how you told this story. You guys obviously have the right friends! And you're brave to take the baby! I was a little more paranoid w/ baby #1. :)

modestmuse said...

Luckily she sleeps all the time, so it's easy!

And Stephanie, I like the idea of printing it up ... I guess send it to Apple or something?