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Articles written by Sondra Ashton

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 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,...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    May 16, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Shake, rattle and roll with the punches

When Guadalajara rumbled with a 3.9 quake, I neither felt nor heard it but at the same time a weird wind seemingly blowing from all directions hit us hard. That night I lay in bed looking up at the...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    May 9, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: When life weaves magic

My son Ben lives in Poulsbo, a lovely town across the water from Seattle, where I lived with my family for 25 years. He sent the following email to me and it is a better story than any I could write....

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    May 2, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Bamboozled

I know that I said (quite plainly), “I am not going to buy any more pots for my plants.” I spoke these words quite sincerely, often, back when I had accumulated a total 100 (plus a small number)...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: As a matter of fat

Several weeks or months ago, all the women in the Rancho jumped onto the latest diet-craze roller coaster. One at a time. I’m not sure how or why. Each is beautiful in her own way. I say “all...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: All my oceans lie westward

I felt lost the whole week. I had absolutely no sense of direction. How could I tell? I have long been able to orient myself to water. I sense the presence of a body of water. On our last day,...

 

Looking out my Backdoor - Rags to riches

Remember a few weeks ago I stayed in the sleaziest hotel in Chacala? Lovelytown. Ugly hotel experience. This week, thanks to the generosity of Kathy and Richard, I am in the most posh hotel in Cancun,...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    April 4, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Tempus fugit

Time flies and the older I get, the faster it fugits. As I contemplate yet another birthday, that mean ol’ tempus is fugiting at the speed of light. To add injury to insult, this weekend we will...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: The Sleaziest Hotel in Chacala

We told her. We told her. Never again is she allowed to pick the hotel. “The owner is really nice,” she said. “Yes, the owner is a nice man; his wife is nice, his three-year-old daughter is...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: What you gonna do when your well runs dry?

Three weeks and counting. Two deep wells supply the municipality of Etzatlan with water. One of the city well pumps quit working. Died the good death after a life of service to his community. Down on...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: I got culture

Last Thursday Kathy, Richard, Nancie and I drove into Guadalajara for a night of highbrow music. El Teatro Santo Degollado, in the Centro Historico district where the Orquesta Filamonica performs, is...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    March 7, 2019

Looking out my Backdoor: Strange and sad and sweet, amid Mardi Gras

I’ve heard stories about this elderly couple who live in El Amparo, the abandoned mining town in the mountains, ever since I moved to Etzatlan. Every Thursday this traditional couple, she in her...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: February is the longest month

Winter, we are weary. Whether she gambols like a bleating lamb or roars like a lion, we welcome March after the grim days of February. Skies may still be gray but a fleeting scent in the air says...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: A road less traveled

Jim phoned, “Would you like to go to El Amparo? John and Carol are coming. Be ready in half an hour.” I’ve been wanting to go see the ghost town of El Amparo for three years. Beginning in the...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Distracted

When our Rancho gardener comes in the morning, Leo often asks me, “Sondrita, how is your wonderful retired life?” “Yes,” I say. We laugh. We both understand my meaning. “Yes, wonderful....

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Be happy, don't worry

Yes, I know, the song says “don’t worry, be happy” and I reversed the order. Which comes first, chicken or egg, or does it matter and who cares? What I noticed is that when I am happy, I tend...

 

Looking out my Back Door: Tequila, pole dancing and more tequila

Yesterday John and Carol, Leo, our gardener, and I took a trip up to the top of the sacred Mountain, Volcan de Tequila. Tequila Mountain dominates a huge section of Jalisco, can be seen from...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Merry Christmas in January

Dear Lee and Roy, Imagine my surprise when Leo handed me mail this morning. He climbs the stairs at the Mercado every Monday morning to check my mail box. I suspect the real reason Leo checks mail...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Oh, for pity's sake!

Those words came out of my mouth with full exclamation stop. And nobody near with ears to hear. Among other things in this mysterious and strange aging process, things like talking with myself, I...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Every day a different day

This morning I walked down to Tony’s On The Beach for breakfast. I called it a walking meditation because naming it such makes me feel better about my small steps, snail pace. Once again I am in...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: The Mystery of the Purloined Scarf

The episode began innocently enough. I had walked over to see Carol about something so mundane I don’t even remember. She came out of her door with a stunning pink scarf wrapped around her neck. I...

 

Looking out my Backdoor: Endings and beginnings

Christmas has been celebrated. The first day of the New Year lurks around the corner. We arbitrarily close out one year, stamp it “over and done” and with trepidation open the flaps of the box...

 

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