Tuesday, July 10, 2007


Yesterday was 9 de Julio, Argentina's independence day, so we planned to spend the holiday at the Ecological Reserve but the weather turned out to be freezing cold and drizzly and then it started SNOWING!!! Mike did not believe me at first when I said it was snowing but then the little flakes got bigger and whiter and fluffier and started piling up into little tiny snow-drifts everywhere and there was no doubt about it. This is the first snowfall in Buenos Aires SINCE 1918!!! As night fell, the streets were completely full of people running around like crazy and dancing in the snow and every single person was taking pictures with cameras and cell phones and camcorders. There were flashes coming from every direction at once. Almost every window and door had people hanging out of it watching the snowy action! We got in a cab and the driver told us that at age 47, he had never ever seen snow before in real life. The snow was a nice diversion from the unfortunate fact that most buildings here are not adequately or heated to deal with anywhere near freezing temperatures. Last night we sat down to dinner inside a parilla with our coats and mittens on, and our breath was coming out in clouds over the table!

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I just watched a new Argentinian movie called XXY. It's a very tender story is about Alex, who is 15 years old and who is both sort of male and sort of female, learning her (his) own sexuality, struggling with loving parents' expectations and facing curiosity and abuse from others. (S)he lives with her parents in an isolated area on the coast of Uruguay. The beach is beautiful and I thought the minimal, blustery setting was an apt setting for Alex's sullen and endearing and willful personality. Part of the plot follows Alex's sexual relationship with Alvaro, a boy whose family visits Alex's parents. I also liked the relationship between Alex and his(her) marine biologist father, who is trying to overcome his own expectations and understand who Alex is growing up to be. The dialogue is sparse but important, so I think I might have missed some key points since I was watching in Spanish without subtitles. But I think I got most of it and I thought it was really good. There's a story synopsis here and a preview here.

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Sunday, July 01, 2007

Amy Sawyer on homelessness in Asheville

Asheville & Mountains
kudos to the fabulous and eloquent Amy, whose editorial I just read in the pages of the Asheville Citizen Times.

The Root Causes of Homelessness Are What To Attack