Aesthetics

When I arrived here,  my apartment was so spare; minimal furniture, utensils, and decorations. I felt a bit deprived. I took down all the Catholic iconography except for one in the foyer and I rearranged furniture and changed curtains and brought back posters from Louisiana when I came back from Christmas. The posters are really…

El Gimnasio (the Gym)

The warm weather and thoughts of mornings at Pensacola Beach and evenings on the porch at Landry's led to the online impulse-buy of a new summer dress. Putting on shorts brought me to the unfortunate realization that my thighs didn't look so great; in fact, they looked like they should never see the light of…

Sun, Water, and DNA

I love sunshine.  I love water. The combination of the two equals Heaven to me. My oldest brother once told me that the Morgan clan originated beside the sea. Our dad was born in Lakeland, Florida. I was born and raised in the piney woods of Louisiana, but wherever I am, I feel the pull…

Paseo Colon

Every Sunday morning Clazada Cristobal Colón, one of the main avenues of the town center (el centro), is closed to motor traffic for about eight blocks and opened to pedestrians, skaters, and babies in strollers.  Starting at 9 a.m., there are art exhibits, music events, car shows, and an antiques market. There are kids' basketball…

La Plaza Mayor

"La Plaza Mayor" just means the main square of the town. The one in Madrid is one hectare (10,000 square meters) big. The tourism website for Torreón describes this main plaza as 12,000 square meters. I didn't measure it, but I guess it is about like a square city block. It was finished in 1914.…

Evening Storm

In Louisiana, it rains a lot.  In El Norte, not much. In fact, from November to February, there was one evening shower at my house. But one evening, I was caught in a storm. As I was getting ready to close the kitchen for the night, I realized that I didn't have enough coffee for…

Sunrise

The morning after the karaoke party, having been awake since three o'clock, I was ready for breakfast by seven. And I was out of eggs. So I got dressed and went to 7-Eleven. When I stepped out into the street, I could feel the sea. It was like being next to a beach. Of course…

Tamales

On a Sunday morning, my landlady opened the foyer door and called out, "Miss?" She does this sometimes because it's easier than tapping on the door and waiting from me to run downstairs and unlock it. Usually, she is bringing me food. On this particular weekend, she and the family had been to a party…

Sleep Schedules

The karaoke party started at three a.m. Maybe it's my Northern European genes, but my body thinks--nay, truly believes--that it should be resting when it's dark outside.  I go to bed too early and wake up too early for a part of the continent where people don't eat dinner until ten o'clock at night. So…