Work it all, baby / Muévelo todo, nena

La versión en español está después de la versión en inglés.

WE FACETIMED SUNDAY WITH A couple we became friendly with when they rented the apartment next door to ours for a holiday. We liked each other so much that they began to visit more often and now try get here at least three times a year. They feel oddly parental. They were here when lockdown began last year and managed to get on the last flight home. We haven’t seen them since. Dudo took a liking to them (treats helped) and would sneak from our terrace to theirs to peer in their bedroom window (click here). They’re both 80+ and have had their vaccines, but they’re now waiting for their families (and the rest of us) to catch up. It was a great one-sided video chat.

First, I tried to explain how they could change from portrait to landscape, so they might both fit on the screen, she said they didn’t have any of those things I told her to change (memories of My Mother the Dowager Duchess). I gave up. Then, she settled into a chair while he stood beside her. We tried to explain about positioning themselves for the camera, but also to no avail. Still the visit was, as I said, great. And they gave us a tour of their new cottage. They have lovely ceilings in the bathroom, kitchen, living room, and conservatory. And the sky above their back garden is beautiful. You can see how marvelous they both looked in the first photo below.

The beach photo at top is from Monday. It was a glorious day and I was surprised by how few people were out.

On my walk today (under seriously hazy skies), I passed a row of British cafe/bars and heard a woman yelling — no, not yelling, shrieking. I couldn’t make out exactly what she was shrieking, but I could recognize that it was English. I spotted her on a small roof terrace above one of the bars. I thought she was having a fight with someone but there was no one on the street in the direction she was facing. Other passersby were also trying to find who she was shrieking at. When I returned 15 minutes later, she was still shrieking. Appalling. I stopped for a closer look and I heard what sounded like the soundtrack from “Dirty Dancing.” She was leading an exercise class! She waved her arms, jumped up and down, and shrieked at two poor woman following her lead —less than 3 feet/1 meter away. Turn down the music, I thought, and maybe you wouldn’t need to shriek. When the people below saw me snapping pictures, they lifted their glasses to me and laughed. I would have left.


CHARLAMOS EL DOMINGO CON FACETIME con una pareja con la que nos hicimos amigos cuando alquilaron el apartamento contiguo al nuestro para unas vacaciones. Nos gustamos tanto que empezaron a visitarnos con más frecuencia y ahora intentan llegar al menos tres veces al año. Se sienten extrañamente paternales. Estaban aquí cuando comenzó el encierro el año pasado y lograron tomar el último vuelo a casa. No los hemos visto desde entonces. A Dudo le gustaron (las golosinas ayudaron) y se escabulló de nuestra terraza a la de ellos para mirar por la ventana de su dormitorio (haz clic aquí). Ambos tienen más de 80 años y se han vacunado, pero ahora están esperando a que sus familias (y el resto de nosotros) se pongan al día. Fue un gran video chat unilateral.

Primero, traté de explicar cómo podían cambiar de retrato a paisaje, para que ambos pudieran caber en la pantalla, ella dijo que no tenían ninguna de esas cosas que le dije que cambiara (recuerdos de Mi madre, la duquesa viuda). Me di por vencido. Luego, se acomodó en una silla mientras él estaba a su lado. Intentamos explicar cómo se posicionan para la cámara, pero también fue en vano. Aún así, la visita fue, como dije, genial. Y nos dieron un recorrido por su nueva cabaña. Tienen hermosos techos en el baño, la cocina, la sala de estar y el invernadero. Y el cielo sobre su jardín trasero es hermoso. Puedes ver lo maravillosos que se veían ambos en la primera foto a continuación.

La foto de la playa en la parte superior es del lunes. Fue un día glorioso y me sorprendió la poca gente que había salido.

En mi caminata de hoy (bajo cielos muy brumosos), pasé por una fila de cafés/bares británicos y escuché a una mujer gritar; no, no gritar, chillar. No pude distinguir exactamente qué estaba chillando, pero pude reconocer que era en inglés. La vi en una pequeña azotea sobre uno de los bares. Pensé que se estaba peleando con alguien, pero no había nadie en la calle en la dirección en la que ella miraba. Otros transeúntes también estaban tratando de encontrar a quién le estaba chillando. Cuando regresé 15 minutos después, ella todavía estaba chillando. Pésimo. Me detuve para mirar más de cerca y escuché lo que sonaba como la banda sonora de “Dirty Dancing”. ¡Ella estaba dirigiendo una clase de ejercicios! Agitó los brazos, saltó arriba y abajo y gritó a dos pobres mujeres que la seguían, a menos de un metro de distancia. Baja la música, pensé, y tal vez no necesites gritar. Cuando la gente de abajo me vio tomando fotos, alzaron sus copas en un brindis. Me hubiera ido.

• That’s the door to the apartment our friends rent. Dudo misses them.
• Esa es la puerta del apartamento que alquilan nuestros amigos. Dudo los extraña.


Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

30 thoughts on “Work it all, baby / Muévelo todo, nena”

  1. Do You Love Me and Boston Dynamics: Isn’t that amazing? When I first encountered that video, I figured it was CGI, but nope, it’s the real thing.

    1. Chrissoup:
      I also thought it was CGI the first time I saw it. And I was impressed even then. Was floored when I realized it was the real thing. I wish someone could program ME to dance like that.

  2. When will a reach the point, that technology baffles me? I love the dancing robots (in my que for a music monday post.) Teaching a robot to dance, teaches us a lot about how complex a brain is, it took years and millions of dollars to design all of the measurements and calculations needed for a robot to dance, our brains do that without us even thinking about it.

    1. David:
      Hah! Maybe YOUR brain does that without even thinking about it. (But I know what you mean.)

    1. Urspo:
      Niña (with a tilde) is a little girl. Nena means baby. It can be used for a female baby or little girl, but it also used to mean things like “Baby, I need your lovin’. Got to have all your lovin’.” or “By my little baby. Say you’ll be my darling. Be my baby now! Whoa oh oh oh.”

  3. Ahhhhhhh, an EMPTY beach would be nice about right now. At least they can facetime. I can’t get my mother to text me a coherent text message to save me soul.

    1. Mistress Borghese:
      Stormy skies and seas are back again today. But the beach is still empty and glorious. When my mother was 84, we went out and got her her first computer. She drove me crazy (everything she did wrong or didn’t know how to do was either my fault or the fault of the computer). However, we Skyped weekly for the next 5 years, we emailed daily, AND she did Google searches for Chuck to get baseball schedules and more. So, although she constantly worked my last nerve, she was pretty amazing. As for her mobile phone, that’s an entirely different story. Don’t get me started!

  4. I love you now, Mitchell, for posting the dancing robots! What fun and now I am dancing, too. Dudo is very sculptural, similar to the 4-legged robot, but much more handsome. Too bad about the shrieking instructor. And the tech-challenged friends. You’ll have to give them lessons when they return. The friends, not the instructor.

    1. Wilma:
      Aren’t those robots amazing?!? I couldn’t believe it wasn’t CGI the first time I saw it. Dudo is a very elegant cat. I don’t think I’ll attempt to teach the tech-challenged friends. They have a 52-year-old son who reminds me of myself with MY mother. (He’s also exceptionally handsome and charming…)

  5. Being tech challenged myself, I refuse to laugh at those poor people! At least I won’t laugh out loud 😉 I love the dancing robots, but every time I see them I mourn the fact that they have more rhythm than I’ve ever had. *Sigh*.

    1. same here, duchess. I wish I could make those moves now, but the arthritis…OY!

      1. I feel ya, Carebear. With arthur stiffening my joints, I can probably do the robot now 😀

      2. anne marie:
        No arthritis and I can’t blame the sciatica for my lack of dance skills.

    2. Deedles:
      You, however, I’m sure could take instruction on sitting up higher in your seat or lowering the computer screen. I know what you mean about the dancing robots. Would someone program me, please?!?

    1. Jim:
      Oh, the house tour was so entertaining. Here and there, we’d get a sliding glimpse of the room when she turned to go somewhere else. Today, the surf is a mess and the sky is dramatically cloudy.

  6. Ah, technology. My MiL fails to understand that most text messages from her family require at least an acknowledgement, if not an direct answer to questions. Drives my DH insane, especially as he knows she spends an inordinate amount of time on her phone checking FB. When he calls her following up on things, she says, oh yes, she got the texts. This conversation takes place at least once a month. The kicker is that she gets highly annoyed if folks don’t answer her texts. 🙂

    1. Mary:
      My mother was the same. She didn’t text. She emailed. At the start, she said she would email so I would know she was still alive. I replied every time. If I didn’t reply promptly, she was incensed. Then she would skip a day, I’d leave messages on her phone, and when I finally did reach her she’d tell me she just didn’t have the time!

  7. That Boston Dynamics video is one of my all time favourites… I just LOVE those bipedal ones (the four-legged ones really creep me out though). The big, herky-jerky one always reminds me of one of those glass drinking birds that are filled with red liquid and bob up and down (now I really am dating myself), LOL! Looked like a nice, quiet day at the beach though….

    1. Tundra Bunny:
      I love the deer-like 4-legged one and the quick footwork. Just amazing. It was strangely quiet at the beach. I suppose because it was the day after Easter Sunday and everyone had gone home or back to work.

    1. Debra:
      She usually has blonde hair. A year of lockdown! Dudo says thanks; he knows.

  8. I thought you were serious about the “lovely ceilings” comment until I saw the photo. Now I understand. Duh.

    1. Walt the Fourth:
      If SG hadn’t been there for the call, he would have asked me what was so nice about the ceilings.

  9. The bit of his hair I can see is a nice, silvery white. I have my own troubles with technology and am always struggling to keep up.


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