Desanimada. That is me after the first day of househunting. Mentally prepared for small houses, I was not prepared for small ovens. The elusive Thanksgiving turkey will once again escape my own dinner table. I can hear you all thinking, “What’s a turkey?” It’s a lot, it turns out. I cooked a turkey or two in Mexico and they were pretty dismal, considering the uneven heating of the oven. Martita and I cooked a turkey in Brazil and it was so frickin’ hot that the kids were nearly asleep by the time it was served at nine p.m. The oven was acceptable – the climate and the unair-conditioned house made the exeprience unrepeatable. Spanish ovens are Chinese ovens or rather, the Chinese, who don\’t use ovens, put European ovens in their kitchens. My relocation agent told me that the Spanish don\’t like to cook which could go a long way towards explaining the ubiquitous hoofy hams hanging from the ceiling and the abundance of Manchego cheese. Can you see where this is going? A ballooning waistline. I might have to take up smoking.
I did not think anything could top tadpoles in a toilet but I was wrong. I\’d forgotten that in Brazil on my househunting trip I saw a tarantula the size of a salad plate crawling across the surface of a pool, an observation which the fraudulent real estate agent denied. I made the mistake of nixing the house and not the agent. Oh well, hindsight as they say … But today I saw a dead bat in a bidet, the little black body curled stiffly on its back near the drain. Remembering my house-hunting lessons of yore, I made Sr. Understanding and the agent verify that this was the case. At least this time no one lied and I remembered the word in Spanish for “bat”. The Chinese would tell me a bat in the bidet is a good omen but I was just creeped out. Neeeexxxxxt house please!
Then there was the Narco Closet, an entire basement lined with racks of clothes, primarily men’s. The house is rented by a young family of Colombians. The woman’s shoe collection rivalled Beyonce’s – racks and racks of Louboutins, Blahniks, Pradas, Guccis, Jimmy Choos. What little furniture they had was either modern or Chinese, a totemic little gold kitty cat set on the floor waving it’s arm rythmically to welcome us. Or not.
La Questa continues. Like Don Quixote, we may be tilting after windmills but something will turn up. Our guests might just have to sleep in a tent by the pool is all …. I’ll e sure to bring you a plate of ham and cheese with your coffee for breakfast.