Official Author Web Site
A Novel for Young Readers
By Nancy Osa
Frijoles Negros y Arroz
AT THE OSA house when I was growing up, Thanksgiving was a mish-mash of Cuban and American delicacies. Besides turkey and potatoes, we had to have black beans and rice (frijoles negros y arroz), usually cooked together as a dish called congrís by my aunt Emma or Rosa. Alongside peas would be Cuban-style marinated green and red peppers. Someone might bring Cuban crackers (galletas) to supplement Mom’s yummy yeast rolls. And a slice of pumpkin pie for dessert would definitely have a scoop of vanilla ice cream (helado) on the plate.
AFTER DINNER, Dad would rest at the table smoking a cigar while I or my sister Maryjane entertained guests on the piano. And there would probably be a game of dominoes played for dimes that the kids and grown-ups would not want to miss… unless they were watching football on TV downstairs.
IT MAY BE hard to believe, but I grew up. I carried my childhood passions into adult life, and today I still love to ride horses, play with dogs, and watch the Chicago Cubs play baseball. I enjoy cooking Cuban and American food and listening to blues music and Latin jazz. If this isn’t the good life, what is???
I caught a baseball at Wrigley Field.
What a great birthday present that was.!
Here I am riding my Canadian mare, Heritage, with my poodle. His real name is Teddy, and he loves horses too!
Here is my fancy Irish setter, Melena del Norte. She is named for a town in Cuba called Melena del Sur.
I learned to play piano at 4 years old.
Photo Ken Morris
Photo Mary Miller
Photo Howard Hecht
Poodle (p. 2), palm tree (p. 3), barbecue grill (p. 4), baseball (p. 5), Cubs logo (p. 5), cigar (p. 5), dominoes (p. 5)
DO YOU HAVE a book report or school project based on CUBA 15 due? Everything you need to know about me and the book is right here on this Web site. Please read it carefully. Anything that you don’t see here is information that I choose not to share publicly. Feel free to let your teacher know this! I welcome discussion e-mails, but I regret that I do not answer homework-based questions.