Thursday, August 21, 2014

An Afternoon at Casa Angelitos






Perched like a great eagle’s nest atop a hill overlooking San Miguel de Allende, the Casa Angelitos has an incomparable view. Though we have no dearth of boutique hotels here in San Miguel, this one stands head and shoulders above most in it’s warmth and beauty. Tastefully decorated with beautiful Mexican art and furniture, the architectural design is open, airy and built naturally into the cliff on which it rests.




And what a venue for a party! Last Sunday afternoon Todd and I were lucky enough to be invited to join in the celebration of Roger’s birthday. Having taken many pictures of Casa Angelitos, Todd is quite familiar with the property. For me however, this was my first visit and  the first time that I had met Roger Jones and his wife Rosana, the proprietors of Casa Angelitos. They welcomed us to their home with such warmth and charm that I was fairly bowled over.




Two of four or five dining areas offered at the party




No stranger to good food, Rosana runs the Vía Orgánica, an organic vegetable shop and restaurant in Colonia Guadalupe, here in San Miguel. For Roger’s birthday she put on a spread I can only describe as spectacular. Beautiful organic salads, (my favourite was the beet), three kinds of fresh sausage supplied by Antonio, our local creator of Italian and Sicilian style sausage, a wonderful tort with fresh raspberries, strawberries and blueberries that Roger had just brought back from the Lake Chapala area, and much much more.



This kitchen certainly inspires great meals


For dessert, among many other things, we were treated to cinnamon rolls that would put Cinnabon to shame, which Rosana told us her daughter Isabella had casually whipped up at the last minute. This all began with mimosas, then wine with lunch and I finished off with some nice sipping tequila. Life is good!




The house flows seamlessly from one section to another and one level to another.






The suites are elegant and spacious




And the décor warm and inviting




Roger, Rosana and Isabella, thank you so much for your hospitality, you are very gracious hosts.


As is often the case, all the photographs in this post are courtesy of the remarkable talent of my husband Todd McIntosh

Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Thin Line


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Robin Williams 1951-2014

photo by Wikipedia

They say that there is a thin line between genius and insanity. I believe that there is a thin line between sanity and insanity. The death by suicide of Robin Williams two days ago, has affected me, like millions of others, quite profoundly. There is no doubt that the man was a comedic genius and that such talent will be greatly missed, but clearly there was another side to his manic public personality.

It is this connection between great talent and emotional disorder that interests me. Most certainly I can lay no claim to any great talent but I am intimately familiar with emotional disorder. My mother suffered from depression, my cousin suffered from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and I take a little pill every morning, without which I become psychco bitch from Hell.

Is there a relationship between talent, genius and chemical imbalance? I also wonder if that relationship carries even further to include addictive personality. Robin Williams not only battled depression but also cocaine and alcohol addiction. Is this simply an unfortunate side effect of living the life of a celebrity, or does it go deeper than that?


Judy Garland 1922-1969

Photo by Wikipedia


"When you have lived the life I've lived, when you've loved and suffered, and been madly happy and desperately sad -- well, that's when you realize you'll never be able to set it all down. Maybe you'd rather die first."


The pubic suffered another devastating loss in 1969 with the death of Judy Garland, certainly one of the greatest talents of all time. Although the official cause of Judy’s death was, “Barbituate Poisoning (quinalbarbitone), incautious self-overdosage, accidental”, the statement above does make one wonder. We know there was no dearth of emotional problems in Ms. Garland’s life and she, as well, counted drugs and alcohol abuse among her personal demons.


John Forbes Nash Jr.,

photo by Wikipedia


John Forbes Nash Jr. A beautiful mind. A mathematician, a genius, a Nobel Prize laureate and a schizophrenic of dramatic proportions. And he is not alone. There is some scientific evidence that there is a higher incidence of bipolar disorder in creative people such as painters, musicians, actors and poets than in the general population.

Writers Mary Shelley, Virginia Woolf, and Ernest Hemingway, composers Irving Berlin and Sergey Rachmaninoff, as well as painters Paul Gauguin and Jackson Pollock were all geniuses believed to have suffered from bipolar disorder. (Patient Health International). If there is a link between genius and creativity and psychological disorders, it seems sad to be given these gifts only to have to suffer for having them.




Thursday, August 7, 2014

Kamikaze Cats



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Thursday Morning Massacre


There has been a marked elevation in the level of destruction around our house lately. Maybe it’s a full moon. It can’t be Spring Fever, it’s August. Candles are being flung off the candelabra on the back patio. Large candles.

The poor harassed, tailless lizards that I find around the house and evacuate to the vacant lot across the street, are escalating in size. The one I found the other day was about six inches long, even with the lack of a tail. As I rescued the poor thing from under the bathroom cabinets, I noticed the malevolent gaze of three cats peering around the corner. Were they snickering?


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“Don’t look at me, I don’t even have any teeth!” 

(not that that slows her down)


I swear the mice are getting bigger as well. I sure hope there are no rats in our back yard. Perhaps it is the lack of freedom during the night. Of late, we have been locking the cat door about the time it gets dark as our cats are not the only ones using the cat door. Firstly we can’t afford to feed the entire neighbourhood, and secondly not all the animals welcoming themselves into our home are cats.

The other night one of the motion sensor lights along the side of the house was activated and spotlighted on the wall outside the window was an opossum the size of a small Labrador retriever. Imagine the fray, not to mention the smell which would permeate the house, if our kamikaze cats laid into that beast in our kitchen.



“What? I didn’t do anything!”

photo courtesy of Todd McIntosh


The day before yesterday I relieved Kashmere, pictured above, of a small dead bird. He was not impressed. Perhaps that was the catalyst ( no pun intended ) for this morning’s debacle. I awoke to find the living room rug full of feathers. Following the feather trail into the kitchen and out the cat door ( no I did not go out the cat door, only the feathers did ) I discovered the site of what could only be described as a massacre.


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Oh my, this can’t bode well.


As I peered in confusion Todd explained that before I got up this morning our three charming kitties had taken down a full grown pigeon. A really large, full grown pigeon. The pigeon now resides in the trash can out front awaiting pickup on Friday. The cat’s are carefully monitoring the trash can, probably waiting for a chance to haul out and eat their kill.


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   “Yah, I did it, so what? Yawn”

Right now I would trade all three of them in for a dog.