Tuesday, February 7, 2012
2011 was not a banner year for the blog. Sometime last March I lost the ump. I never really had the time, I just made it work between tantrums, feedings and not getting enough rest.
We are still here in Buenos Aires, living and working, raising our two daughters and making a life in a still quite foreign land. Why we continue...that's up for discussion all the time. Argentina is no longer a cheap place to live. I can't afford to shop for clothes, buy toys for the girls or eat out much. We have been priced out of the real estate market for the size apartment we would need. Our landlord recently told us that when our lease runs out in October, she will try to sell this 3 bedroom flat for a staggering $725,000 - yes, that's in dollars not pesos. And don't forget there are no mortgages here. To buy you must pay 100% in cash. Where is all that money coming from? How do argentines afford life? another mystery. The soy farmers have and continue to do quite well. Anyone with land in this country is rich rich rich. We went to the ranch of an expat mom friend and her argentine husbands last weekend. Her in laws grow soy and corn, run a private equity firm and several dry cleaning businesses. I guess someone in their family will be able to buy our apartment or something like it.
Next month marks our 5th year of living in Argentina. I turn 40 in August. It's been two years since I set foot in the US or outside this country. I am itching to travel again. In October I'll go to Northern India for two weeks with my good friend Jen. Hugh will take care of the girls along with our saintly live in helper Aurelia.
I've started giving away their clothes and toys to needy new moms. Yes, its official, this uterus is closed for business. There is a not so small part of him that grieves for his shattered dream of 4 little girls all trailing after him in a chorus of daddy daddy but I share no such fantasy. I'm still as shocked as the rest that parenthood factored into my life at all. Valentina is at a glorious age - enter the "whys". Why did I come first and not Maxima? Because you two talked it over in the sky and decided that you wanted to be the big sister and she wanted to be the little sister so would wait and come later. Why don't we eat on the floor like dogs? Why doesn't Aurelia speak English? Why can't grandma take a train to visit us? Wonder Wonder Wonder. It's mostly wonderful these rich conversations but I do dread the inevitable "why don't you have a papa?" Please give me a few more years to prepare for that one!
Utta is as usual asleep on the couch snoring up a storm. She's survived two operations in the last year or so to remove cancerous tumors. When they return (we've been assured its just a matter of time), we'll probably not put her under again as its a real stress for a bulldog to undergo anesthesia and the recovery. Also, she has some sort of degenerative spinal condition. She's not in pain but we have to be careful about her jumping up and down off the sofa. Fortunately, her quality of life is still great. She's surrounded by people all day, and thanks to Maxima's horrid table manners, laps up all kinds of goodies from the floor during mealtimes.