Protected: A Lesson in Botanicals

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.

from Tango, an Argentine Love Story

I’m being eaten by mosquitoes on the terrace of La Pharmacie, a restaurant in a former old drugstore on Charcas. But I wouldn’t dream of wimping out and saying, “Let’s go inside.” My thick-skinned companions, photographer Alison Wright and writer Lynn Ferrin, live in San Francisco, where fog limits outdoor supping, and they want to eat al fresco. As uncomfortable as I feel, I realize I’d probably jump in the contaminated Río de la Plata if they asked me, so I sit tight.

Tango-dancing Buddhist Falls from Grace

. . . and sees the Light It was fall in Buenos Aires, which is spring in the States. Late one morning, light poured through my two open terraces into my eighth-floor Recoleta apartment. It was the soft but vibrant autumnal light that always arouses such nostalgia in me. So, before setting to work at […]

Why Tango is Yoga

“Lo que a muchos averguenza, a otros hacer gozar.” “What shames many, gives joy to others.” -Caption to a tiled mural that features tango dancers, Retiro subway station, Buenos Aires, Argentina Following is an excerpt from Chapter 8. Falling Down and Getting Back Up Again, in my travel memoir, Tango, an Argentine Love Story (Seal […]

Savoring Patagonia

Dark peaks, many still cloaked in snow, rag the horizon. Besides the druid-like towers, a formation called the Cuernos del Paine rises above Lago Pehoé, one of many lakes we passed, whose waters seem to come in three shades—emerald, aquamarine, and sapphire. When the relentless wind blows, it’s a sight to see hundreds of frothy white caps stand up and dance on their rippling waters. wild hares browsing, and horses running loose from a nearby estancia. Milky Way achingly close. The sky is so dense with stars,

Protected: Las Garzas de San Blas

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.

The Pleasures of the Table

The Pleasures of the Table appeared in France, a Love Story, ed., Camille Cusumano, 2004.

A Splendid Duck

THE MOST memorable duck I ever ate was a canard cooked up slowly, willfully, by my friend Suzanne when we were on a summer work program in France. We were young and impoverished students, enriching ourselves in one of the world’s finest cultures. But pommes frites and salade niçoise could go only so far in making a student from Texas (Suzanne) or New Jersey (me) feel culturally superior. So every few weeks, Suzanne, who at twenty-eight was more worldly-wise than I (age twenty), seduced a couple of men. They would, for the pleasure of our poulet-de-printemps company, wine and dine us. The truite, biftek, and coq au vin were superb, if not free; the men–who always seemed more ravenous at the end of the meal–always expected un petit peu de sexe.
Never mind that there are other names for such an arrangement. It was all soul-blackening premarital sex, as far as I, not long out of Catholic girls’ school, was concerned. (And feminism wouldn’t reach my neighborhood until a year later.) Somehow I always got out of paying the postprandial price. On the other hand, Suzanne, obviously one of those libertine Protestants I’d heard about, would on occasion have no qualms about delivering “les goods.”