Havre Daily News - News you can use

Articles written by Sondra Ashton

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Looking out my Backdoor: The rain in Spain(ish) and assorted nonsense

Rain, “lluvia” in Español, pinging on my Mexican tile roof, sounds like the clatter of typewriter keys hitting the platen. Do you remember that rapidly rattling noise? Woe is me. These old bones...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: My 'almost-Mexican' fiesta

This was not my idea, to have a party. It was sloppily put together. Any party, even pot luck, takes a lot of work. I didn't really want to do it. I was tired and in pain from the long bus ride. Bah...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Adept in the ways of sloth

Nobody told us. Well, nobody told me. I’m from a family of workers, obsessive workers, one might say. In my family, sloth is a mere breath removed from slovenly and slatternly. Nobody ever said...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Beware the devious AI toothbrush

“This is the way we brush our teeth, brush our teeth, brush our teeth. This is the way we brush our teeth, so early in the morning.” News headlines to nursery rhymes, that’s me. When I read...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Phase of moon, juxtaposition of planets?

Ever have a day when everything you touch turns to mud? For one thing, it is raining. Tropical Storm Priscilla hovers off the coast in a direct line up and over the mountains to the west. Not far in...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: October, Sweet October

Editor's note: See Festival photos at www.havredailynes.com. October is the sweetest month, well, unless one is up to one's hocks in snow, and not the first snow of the year at that! Betrayed by Septe...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Micro slice of a simple life in paradise

When one lives in a tiny community, little things can tend to balloon into huge importance. When I say “small community,” I don’t mean a place numbered in four digits, where you might recognize...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: What you gonna do when the lights go out?

Stand on the curb of any street in any town in Mexico and look up. No, not that high. Those are just the ubiquitous buzzards, turkey vultures, also fondly, tongue in cheek, called the Mexican Eagle....

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Sometimes a silly notion

After two weeks at a beach resort in Mazatlan, I wanna go home! Not that I don’t love it here. I do. I do. What is not to love? Fantastic balcony view. Comfortable room. Staff who treat me as though...

 

Grass is greener, both sides of the fence!

One day last week Leo asked, “Had breakfast yet?” I grabbed my bag and we headed to the gordita place. I’m certain there are a hundred gordita places in Etzatlan. This one is on the man street;...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Dear Havre Daily News

I have turned into my father and I don’t like it. When I lived in Washington, I used to almost dread Dad’s phone calls because they too frequently meant that somebody we knew, in the family or in...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Sitting in my corn field

Used to be, if I had a serious deadline, I would work all day, work all night, work until the project was finished, ready to deliver. Ah, well, that was then. “Used to be” is like paint, it...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Missed my calling

Today I bring you the banal, the mundane, my trite self-discovery in household hints. Soap-pads Ohso Special. Also known as SOS or, in Español, “fibra metalica.” Can you believe I could not find...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: The quality of light

My backyard pulls me out of the house. I take a book with me, as always, but cannot focus when surrounded by such magical glory. This is the same yard, the same beauty, the same powerful stillness...

 

Out my Backdoor: Strange days and strange ways

Do you ever wonder if the big ol’ sun up there looks down and thinks, “Those are some mighty strange beings down on that little ball of mud, especially that one there, standing by the mango tree,...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: The color of laughter

Yesterday my computer went strange on me, would not let me make any of my usual connections. So after trying everything I knew (not much) I phoned my son for help. Ben was at work, so he said he’d...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    July 25, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Piecing a partial picture patchwork past

DNA and ancestry search sites are the latest greatest. I’m not sure I want unknown relatives crawling out of the woodwork. The relatives I know are scary enough. Of my background, I know I am...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    July 18, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Bats in my belfry

I was sitting on my front patio talking with my gardener, Leo, when a velvety brown bat fluttered between us and landed in a hollow metal rafter supporting the patio roof. Ah, I had wondered if bats...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    July 11, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: It was a dark and stormy night

Here in this high plateau valley surrounded by mountains, in the rainy season, roughly mid-June through mid-October, the sky bursts with pyrotechnic activity nearly every night. I like storms. I like...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    June 27, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: On the train

I boarded the Empire Builder #7 in Wolf Point. I quickly kissed my daughter goodbye, the door clanged shut, I found my seat and the train rolled west. I cried all the way to Glasgow; the sky,...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    June 20, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: What was I thinking?

Does anybody remember Mighty Mouse? Is Mighty Mouse still alive? Evidently, I thought I’d swoop into my daughter’s life singing, “Here I am to save the day!” Boy, howdy, was I ever wrong! I to...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    June 13, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor - Living at-with-inside the zoo

After a whirlwind trip around eastern Montana last week, I’ve settled in a room with no view but, more importantly, with private bath, at my daughter’s new home in Glendive. At times in our...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    June 6, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: We made omelet, mixed and magical

Bacon and eggs are common base ingredients, but we created a different kind of omelet at Char’s the other morning, a “Friend Omelet,” made of ingredients (ourselves), old friends and new. I had...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    May 30, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Do you ever get down in the mouth?

Depression by any other name is no rose, let me tell you. Steve and Theresa, my friends from my long-time home in Washington, are back in their home. We had a lovely time together; I especially...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    May 23, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Reasons, seasons, and forever friends

Friends come in every size, color and flavor and I would not want it to be any other way. I’ve heard it said that some friends are for a reason. I’d agree with that. Take Benjamin, for example,...

 

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