I have a daily phone call with Laura and Salma. I use Skype and call computer-to-computer to it costs nothing. This morning I sang the ABC's to Salma and Laura told me that she bobbed and danced to my voice. Linda has some potted ficus trees in the house and apparently Salma is getting great enjoyment out of scooping out the soil and dumping it on the floor. Laura took her to Target and chased her through the clothing aisles and Salma loved that.
I have to cut Rosa's hours back to two days a week but I can't bring myself to do it, so I've tried to find someone to hire her on the other three days. I posted a message on the Valleros website. Corrin, who says she desperately needs someone to do housework, has agreed to employ Rosa one day a week. So I still have two days to fill.
I went for a night walk with Rudy. At about 8:30 pm we set out to visit his property. He is in the middle of building a home. The property is in an isolated location. Rudy warned me that the gate might be locked, but that we could squeeze through a gap. It turned out that his workers had strung barbed wire across the gap, but there was a small opening at the bottom so I got on my stomach and shimmied through the dirt. "Go on," I said to Rudy. "It'll be just like boot camp forty years ago." So Rudy did it too, and we proceeded to his property with dirt all down our fronts. The trail crosses a small stream (you hop on three stones), and up through a wooded area to the site of the construction.
There was no moon, only bright stars, though of course we had our wind-up flashlights. We toured the property and Rudy explained the layout to me. The wind has grown quite strong at night lately and it kept picking up fine sand from the construction and flinging it into my eyes. A frog had gotten into the house and was trying to climb the wall. Huge clouds of mist obscured Cerro Gaital in the distance.
I love walking around El Valle at night. It's all wind in the trees, mountains, clouds and stars. Wandering dogs, frogs, sometimes ñeques or opossums, and the occasional silhouette of a sloth if you're lucky. Sometimes youths making out in the shadows.
We walked out the long way, along the Casa de Lourdes road, and parted ways on the Los Capitanes road. Returning home I detoured through the far end of my yard and stopped at Zippy's grave to say hello. I found Li'l Fishy outside and meowing at me her unhappiness at being left alone. Now I'm back in the office and she's in her box next to me, happy and purring.