Canada felt nice, Vancouver was very cool and laid back. We had my 2 sisters, we had friends. Kecia Nyman, who was with me modelling with Helmut Newton in Morocco when I met Salvador, was living in Vancouver with her husband John Fluevog who had ( then one) a very nice shoe store where we bought shoes and started talking with John and I was a model? His lovely wife too and that is how we got to know Kecia was there, little did we suspect that a decade later John Fluevog’s stores would carry my shoe line. Was nice to spend time with them and Taj Mahal also passed by as he was performing there. We liked Canada and we even thought of becoming Canadian, like our family, Alejandro even had a Canadian passport and because Canada seemed friendly, independent and still quite new in many ways. We rented a nice house and since I was still recuperating, we took it easy. Wonderful days at home  where I took up baking bread. Someone had given me the Tassajara Bread book ( Zen cooking) and there are some incredible bread recipes in there, specially the Banana Nut bread. I became quiet good at it and baked my days away.

We were going to set up a small fashion business with a friend who was going to put up a store and sell our things. So I started cutting and sewing velvets and brocades we had brought from India…

Here we are in the photo-booth wearing the jackets we made.

… But soon there was trouble between him and his wife and it became too complicated . We had a good time doing what we did but thought that Montreal was a better place to try to do something. We got ourselves a used Volkswagen Bus, very pretty, dark green and cream

and set off for our trip Vancouver-Montreal with Salvador’s brother Diego who had come to visit us. But half way the bus broke down, probably because I had been driving as well when Salvador had to sleep and I did not know much about cars or had never really driven and there we were on that busy highway in a torment of rain so it was very hard to see and the car swaying over the road, Diego who was sitting beside me in the front threw his arms over his eyes afraid to look. Anyway, maybe I had left the hand brake on? There we were in the middle of nowhere waiting to be towed to the nearest Garage, it was very hot, hundreds of bloodthirsty mosquitoes and after waiting for a few more hours in the garage with nothing around, they told us the car was irreparable so we had to leave it there and even had to sell our Nikon camera to the garage owner so we could get a Hotel and  get to the station the next day  to take the train for the rest of the journey. It certainly was safer. We stayed a little while in Montreal where I had found an Agent and did some work

 But there was not much to do until one day I got that dream job to do a big catalog for Eaton department store in Toronto, 6 or 7 weeks booking, Wow! I never had a job like that simply because they never asked me for it but here they thought, why not? The clothes were dreadful, mostly really horrible and have to be pinned up everywhere and it was a lot of work to do your own hair every day and look different but on the other hand you are working all that time with the same people and sort of get to know them a bit and that is very nice. Anyway we moved to Toronto and the work took altogether more than 2 months because of rain or other inconveniences. Salvador wanted to go after a few weeks so he took off to Madrid to scout the situation. We were missing Europe and Salvador had family and friends in Madrid so that seemed the next place to go. Alejandro went to Pre-school while I was working. It was summer, it was nice and when the job was finished Alejandro and I left for Madrid as well.

In Madrid I could work a lot and I did

I had the luck to be liked by “El Corte Ingles” famous Spanish department store and worked with them a lot, had big Posters all over Spain and different ones all the time plus commercials, pictures, catalogs and so on, was a great time. The make up artist was Anthony Clavet and we became good friends, he was very good and very funny. I saw him for the last time in NY in the 80-ties but in 1990 he past away. He was wonderful.

Anthony Clavet, Pia Frithof, me and Margarita ( sister of Salvador)

Sometimes they booked me in London or Barcelona or a foreign magazine would come to Spain and it was also in Madrid that I did a show for the first time and that was for Loewe.

Soon I became the Loewe darling and did all their shows and pictures, all very chic!






All was well but it became a bit boring after a while even that Madrid was a wonderful place with it’s old Café’s and tasty tapas, strolling on a summer night with Salvador’s father who knows all the best places to stop and have a drink of wine and the best tapa’s, Gamba’s a l’ajilo. That was 1972, the atmosphere was warm and gay and busy but we needed a place where Salvador could paint and I could do my thing in the best way possible and Paris seemed the right place, at the right time. Paris was vibrating, like London in the 60-ties or NY in a different way in the late 60-ties.

Now Paris was calling…



In the Tiger Balm Gardens ( Singapore). I am wearing a little vest I made of gold brocade and black velvet ribbons, lined with bright yellow satin, the blouse is of bright cyclamen (pink/purple) soft thin silk and the skirt remade from an original dark red hand woven satin silk and gold Indian skirt, 2 silver belts. Alejandro is wearing bright green satin pants.

In order to get our visas we had to stay a week or two in Singapore and found ourselves a wonderful old fashioned Hotel with beautiful rooms decorated with original antique Chinese furniture although it was not a hotel De Luxe, rather a “has been”, in the downtown part. Singapore was only the beginning of what it is now and the difference between the modern High-rises and the old old part, was striking. It was also very dirty under all the facades. It was here we celebrated the end of 1971 and stepped into 1972. It was very funny when on that evening we were sitting on a terrace and 2 good friends from Spain are passing by. Neither of us had any idea we were there. Alfonso O’Lasso and Kemal, still see the picture in my mind as it was very unexpected.

Drawing Salvador did of Alfonso there

On the other hand Alejandro and me got very sick, I mean very sick and I know why. One afternoon strolling the streets and markets we smelled that delicious smell of veggies frying in a wok and yes, indeed there was this little stand on the street corner, very common then and there, with a man frying veggies in a wok! We were hungry and ate it all… Whatever it was that caused it, it was there and it was serious, acute hepatitis, both of us, my poor Alejandrito.

extremely elegant

We had to go back to Delhi, had our return tickets and all our treasures there. Back in Delhi we stayed in a nice Hotel and Alejandro and I were so sick, in the heat with blasting fever, I could not move but saw him from my bed, he was so brave, I remember it well. At a point we could move and went to see a doctor who gave me enormous injections of Vitamins and that was very scary, they were so big and were they clean? And what was it?Looked to me like orange juice but I guess it helped and slowly started to feel a bit better. Alejandro recuperated much faster.








Here I am wearing one of this marvelous hand embroidered coats from kasmir and the golden brocade boots with snake leather I had made up in Delhi.

As soon as we could we took a flight to London where we stayed a few weeks to recuperate and get back from yellow to my normal color. We had sent all our treasures by boat from Delhi to NY. somewhere near the Canadian border as we wanted to go to Canada. It was a very interesting time in London, Tony and Susan Kent were there to produce a play with people they brought over from India and Rufus of the Living Theater was involved as well. Then there were our dear friends Dick Polak and his wife Edina ( Ronay) with whom we spend a lot of good times but by now our luggage had arrived at the other end of the world so we went. Wow, I don’t know how we did it, fly there take a  train to get our luggage and from there take the train to Vancouver(Canada) which took 3 days and 2 nights but it first had to cross the border, and that was scary because the Customs took us of all the people to be searched, and we had to open all our cases and as we had some presents for friends that were not allowed, we spent 2 scary hours that it took them but ( sigh of relief) we are on our way again in this long Double Decker train that shows us snow and more snow, snow on the Rockies, snow on the fields – It’s winter in Canada…

Love this drawing Salvador did of me in Singapore.


Who am I? Where do I come from? Where do I go? All unanswerable questions for sure but India seemed a place where they had thought about this for a very long time and where at least there was a different view of things. We read Sidartha (Herman Hesse), Krishnamurti who has a lot to say, Yogananda ( his autobiography) Mdm.Blavatski,   Alice Bailey and other different and great minds. India seemed more spiritual then many other places at that time. As a matter of fact many young people from all over the world thought so and some burned their passports when they got there and some got lost and confused. Here I am not talking about a 2 week holiday to visit some famous places and stay in luxury hotels, no, I am talking about people who went there to experience the real India which has so much beauty and at the same time so much poverty and the fact that you are in a completely different culture enables you in a small way to undo all the things that have been put into you as if it was the only truth and the only way. What blew me away was that even when the people had next to nothing they would be smiling and make the best of it instead of complaining.

As I have told you in Paris we had become good friends with Tony and Susan Kent and we left together with them via London to New Delhi. Helmut Newton could not believe I left again while I could be working every day in the glamorous city of Paris. In Delhi it was excruciatingly hot and after staying a while with Tony and Susan at Tony’s  Sitar teacher Kumar, we decided to head for a cooler place and took a plane to Kashmir. When we got out of the taxi that took us to Srinagar where we were going to rent a house boat, we were met by a crowd of hungry people that just had past a very cold and terrible winter and were now looking for ways to get by. Of course there is always one person who knows everything, and is known to know, so the taxi brings you directly to him as he also speaks perfect English. We rented a house boat of very nice people, a big family who had that lovely boat with which we could do what we wanted so we painted it all colors and all the pillars in silver, they were amazed. Every day the little boats ( shikara’s) they get around with on the Dall Lake, would crowd outside our boat trying to sell something, beautiful flowers, gorgeous fruits and veggies, Persian carpets, marvelous jewellery and Antiques. Since the English had been there for a long time in the 30-ties and 40-ties, they had a lot of things specially made for them in European style but with the Kashmir touch. I found the most beautiful embroidered long cotton coats and skirts and soon the boat was filled with carpets, some precious Persian ones. Eventually we got our own Shikara and could spend afternoons in the middle of the lake listening to our music ( took our loudspeakers and tape recorder) or peddle around between the Lotus flowers and the Kingfishers (beautiful blue birds). I enjoyed very much the shopping that came to you and all this beautiful jewelry unveiled for prices that are hard to imagine now, also they had a lot of fur and showed me the most amazing white fox coats in 40-ties style, which I love so much, so gorgeous to look at but not to have. The family we rented the boat from was so poor, they had nothing, would wear the same clothes every day and had some old pots and pans in a shack they called their house but they were never complaining, instead they were always smiling and being happy, we paid them to cook for us and take care of us in general, they were very much a family. I know, you like to know more and there is a lot to tell but there is not enough space here,  instead I show you a some pictures that survived our travels and moves.

 From Kashmir we went to Goa…

 We stayed for more or less 6 months in Kashmir and then went by train via Benares to Goa which is in the South, on the coast below Bombay and that was a whole different picture, the deserted beaches I had seen a decade earlier were now occupied by lots of young American and European people, it looked like Woodstock to me at first glance. Once you have a place to stay, in our case a wonderful house right on the beach, things look different and it was all quite wonderful. We could not stay too long in Goa, maybe 2 months altogether,  because our visa’s were expiring and already we had had 2 extensions so now we had to leave the country and get a visa elsewhere. Singapore seemed the nearest to go to and so we packed our bags and left for Singapore. We were sure to come back to India so left our things there, cannot remember where but we did recuperate them so… There are some hilarious stories in Goa but that is for an other time. What I can say though is that again we learned a lot….

Remember: to see the pictures bigger you have to click on them and then click back to get back to the page. Links are highlighted and when you click on it you get something about the person or thing I am talking about, here you can click off and you automatically get back to the page. I am saying all this because some of you may not be that computer savvy to know everything. I certainly am not but am learning.


When we got booked for a few English magazine jobs in Marbella (1970-1971) it was a good time for us to leave Ibiza because we had decided to go to India & we needed enough money to stay there for a while…no plans as to how long or where from there, we just wanted to go. We left out treasures with friends as we planned to come back at a point…

Above and below some of the pictures by John Bishop in Marbella.

From Marbella to Milan, Italy, to do some serious modelling and I did, but have no pictures of that time. Ricardo Gay was my agent and I remember working a lot with Toscani and Aldo but…

Love this picture of Alejandro that Salvador took in Milan

and this one that he took on a trip to Morocco

We were booked for a photo shoot in Morocco with Tony and Susan (Bottomly) Kent, who had become good friends in Paris where we went after Milan and from where we planned to take off to India. Tony Kent was a famous photographer in Paris and I had met Susan before when I had come to Paris from London for work with Newton. I met her when I was sitting that spring morning on the Terrace of “The Deux Margots” ( beside the Flor) and I saw this incredible looking young woman crossing the street, short silky dress blowing in the breeze, high heel sandals, a little doggie in her arms and a raven black shuffled hairdo. She came straight towards me and set down beside me and introduced herself: Susan Bottomly. ( International Velvet of the Warhol Factory ) This was before I had met Nico in Ibiza but the 2 Factory girls both came up to me just like that, funny now that I realise that. Susan is still a good friend and she is still incredibly beautiful. Anyway we went to Marrakech for a photo shoot with Tony and Susan and we had a great time there while working and being together all of us friends, Paula Moore was the third model and Olivier Boelen , dear Dutch friend, kept everyone entertained.

Beautiful picture Tony Kent did of us.

We were going to go via Brussels to Delhi and had to buy the tickets in Belgium, but because we had an accident on our way from Brussels back to Paris, see Salvador’s story, we had to stay in Paris much longer then anticipated as Salvador had a broken ankle and could not walk. We rented a place and I worked with Helmut Newton almost every day  and also did some commercial jobs in Germany, a very busy time, cooking vegetarian meals which always took somehow a long time to make, taking care of Salvador who could not move much but could take care during the day of Alejandro as I was working a lot and sometimes had to take planes very early in the morning and come home tired but of course we were young and full of energy and plans…  My agency at that time was Models International, which was found by Simone d’Aillencourt and Christa Fiedler, (she is the mother of  Isabelle Marant), 2 incredible women indeed. They both had been very big models, especially Simone who was in all the magazines when I was still in school, always so elegant. They were good agents, like I said I worked a lot.…

Series for French Vogue by Helmut Newton ( with Alejandro).



Pictures by Helmut Newton for Nova

It was wonderful, we had a good time but now are going on the road again, see you in India!