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Archive for the ‘Shopping’ Category

first of all, this is an unfounded rumor. The little Mercadito, next to the Expreso Condesa, where the back was full of the same-o same-o handicrafts: word is it’s gonna be either or KFC or an Applebee’s…with the recent invasion of a Wendy’s, a couple of doors away, WTF? is there some kind of design/license review in this town or does the mayor (outgoing) have any kind of say about this? if this is even half-way true, given the recent invasion of Dunkin’ Donuts and a Little Caesars down 4th Calle, this is fairly outrageous for the preservation of what remains of Antiguas’ cultural integrity…in Carmel, for example, where I once lived for ten years, you can’t even eat ice cream on the streets. I’m not suggesting that kind of Nazi thinking here but…

and yes, we’ve got the PNC, those lovable copies of SS storm troopers, standing on the corners in the mornings…as if they’re really ‘combating crime’ in this haven of tranquility,this tourist mecca..and why the Army troops ride with them is another mystery. ..the crime here occurs after dark, folks..and is focused on tourists/gringos..that’s where the money is, but why not do their patrols after dark and in the fringe areas of town? oops..Mr Logic just reared his ugly head again.

Speaking of logic, Caniz, that long-time private mail service that we pay extra for, for the extra service? they’ve decided to add a little to the pile: now there’s only outgoing mail on Tuesdays but on Thursdays they’re bringing in mail from the City…hmm,you ask? yeah, me too..why not go back to the outgoing mail service on that day also? the truck is here…throw in some mail, what the hell? why not? don’t ask, don’t tell/smell…

Biden’s in-country, bringing promises  of joy, strength and money, no doubt..will Guatemala ever see any of the $$? only if Portillo comes out of Zacapa and rearranges the constitution (done often here)…I like the guy: great hair, good clothes and a past that works well with the electorate here..so what if he wasted two Mexicans? that’s gotta count for something..so what if he stole a few million bucks here and there? he’s obviously a ‘go-to’ kinda guy..

OK, I’m whining…allowing a Wendy’s on the Plaza was a rape of the cultural integrity of Antigua: I’m not against ‘fast foods’ as long as they’re down the block and out of sight…if and a big IF, a KFC or an Applebees goes in next door, its the beginning of the end of Antigua as something special, a cultural treasure or a UNESCO World Heritage place where we live…it’s bad enough with all the ice cream stores, bars, restaurants..not to mention travel agencies…I’m not…they gotta make a living..I don’t but I can see their place in the scheme of things.

Blender-Rama? daiquiries…just enough to make this possible nightmare fade for a while.+

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music! Nelson is playing multiple gigs..Panza Verde, Frank’s Place, Angie Angie’s…whew…Dr J and Piano Mike, an unlikely duo, at the Exit Inn tomorrow at 8pm…Alex’ latest creation/restaurant about to open in the rear of Nido Antigua.
and the mess they call 5th calle poniente(west)..workers working at 7pm, trying to finish the screw-up…Christophe says it’s been five weeks of hell and with the first of the big-time processions/with crowds beginning tonight…ah, Antigua..you really know how to screw things up. And no usual Friday night municipal band concert at the Palacio? why?…street under repair, that’s why..the Marimbas under City Hall had a crowd, some dancing.

changes? o where to start? the lower level bar at Casbah is gone…reverted to Djinn, one of the last shops..which means that Marvelous Marbel is out of a job, at least for now…heard that four bars have recently been raided/shut down for various infractions, with Las Vibras being one…the other three? dunno…unconfirmed info, as usual with A-Town..

and the traffic cops were actually directing traffic! as in working! the trail of cars leaving town was bummer to bummer..oops..bumper..
und zo..it’s a starry night, meaning a cold one..wrap up with someone, is my advice.
and tomorrow? the outflow of the latest public printing of Our Man in Antigua, hither, thither and yon..and it’s being included in the 2015 edition of the Moon/Guatemala Travel Guide (the best)..whoopee, I say..go to the Amazon site (they just sent me $$)at http://www.amazon.com/author/michaelsherer for the latest specials, some free.
so, it’s a choice between starting the fire or sending out for two fat women…eskimo stuff, you know…it’s the ‘fire’…cheaper/easier/less hassle and I figured out why there’s the occasional crease in my right knee…propped against the tuk-tuk frame to avoid the bumps…hah, he said…I came back in tuk-tuk #3, who is starting a hamburger business across the street from an existing hamburger place, Hamburguesa Gigante…neither will survive..the new Dunkin’ Donuts, across from Burger King on 3rd calle pon/west?…lines of people and they MIGHT make it..go out and make it a great weekend, somewhere, somehow..la vida es corte/life is short, we know.

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zo, 5th and 6th calles are ripped up..but..they finally figured out which side of the street for the new (2nd)trenches and now they’re laying pipe (PVC) and hooking up the water lines into the buildings along that street..using pressure gauges, even, to see if there’s any leaks..did the workers get paid for last month? must’ve been or else someone threatened someone else..zo? the processions start this month, and then thru March until the big Blow Off for Holy Holy Week the first week of April…let’s just say that this project is a bit behind schedule.
what’s with to 2 giant spotlights to the west part of town tonight? looked like a Bat Signal but didn’t hear any theme music or hear the rumble of the Bat Car…and yes, Fuego is still going off, unleashing more ash in the skies. My eyes gave up today, so I’m back to the hot compress routine and if you see me puffy…it’s not booze, its the dust.
supposedly, Copia Fiel will crank another 25 copies of Our Man in Antigua Friday…half are presold (yay)and if you’re interested, PM me and we’ll do a little deal..wholesale deal…got it?

yeah, Las Vibras is closed/gonzo..Glen Wilson bought out Brian Wilson of Century 21 and reports that business/sales/rentals is doing great…why does Antigua(Bodegona)import avocados from Mexico? isn’t Antigua famed as being Green Bellies, where avocados are king? why is Bodo’s sugar section and toilet paper section so huge? is there a connection? just asking, ok?
the most excellent Marbel and Flor of Dasha hanging at Dasha..Claudia of Da Vinci not in, as usual on a Tuesday (I checked)

Green Belly, the segway biz? they’re fading, rapidly…’never thought the idea would catch on….Chapins wouldn’t do it (scared)leaving tourists…not a chance in hell..sorry, but that’s how it went..not even Freddy’s/Simoon has a chance..tourists won’t/don’t, which leaves the backpackers/Christians…same..

and it’s a perfect night in A-town..stars out, temperature perfect..we are so lucking fucky to live here/never take it for granted…the Eastern US in frosted in..too bad, I say

Frank’s Place, on the hill? daily groups! who knew? not me..no fire for me tonight..saves some $$ but I like a fire at night…and yes, after a few screw-ups, I’ve got the video thing down..maybe Maite or Marbel will step up to be ‘models’ at the beach…stay tuned..this ain’t over.

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yep, finally over. I’d almost gotten around to thinking about watching it but…it got away or I just faded…probably ‘B’

Origami should be reopened by now…maybe this week? and maybe the rains are back, after a few weeks of absence..and a few more folks are making the move to come here permanently: having been thru those decisions/choices myself, unless you’re furnishing an entire house and bringing cars it all comes down to just getting rid of everything and traveling light. Part of the excitement is ‘starting over’..yeah, there’s stuff I sometimes wish I’d kept but there’s a joy in collecting art again, starting a new mineral collection (my bag) and just saying ‘screw it’ to all the stuff that’s taking up space in the life.

so, last weeks’ little excursion to Baja Verapaz and Salama? not quite a cluster f…k or a goat f…but close…you know, it IS Guatemala, where nothing ever goes as planned. The information is spotty/weird and sometimes just plain wrong. The front wheel fell off the little ‘flete’ pick up we rented but close enough to walk to the hotel, leaving him in the street with a few quetzals and ‘good luck’…..he’d run us ragged up mountain trails up/down, ‘just five more minutes’….I don’t think (often)that he had another phrase in English..I kept up, mostly, until the last trail down to the river…thank god I took water with me. and rum in the room…the $#@%! hotel, where we stayed last year (HBT, the ‘Perfesser’ Alabama Bob and I) didn’t have ice and there wasn’t any hot water…the price, 100q, was right and I got used to sitting up on the still-unfinished/unfurnished terrace with a BIG glass of rum and damn little water…hey, it was a  ‘field trip’, ok? question: the last/first legs of the final link to Salama’ were via a better class of bus than a  ‘chicken bus’….reclining seats and definitely not a converted school bus…any idea what the class or name would be? not a pullman, either…in between and for a three hour ride, acceptable to these old bones….you know, after hiking up/down on Friday, I didn’t have any sore muscles(except in my  head, from the rum…but it was good rum, Botran)

Yeah, I’m already making plans to return in August…got a good guide, a good mineral book, topo maps and so on…as usual, asking for information and showing them a map gets 12 different answers from four people…ok, fine, just back from a rum/cigarette break….anyone noticing a bunch of ‘for rent’ signs around town? I’m seeing a few back-packers but not in the usual hordes, altho there was one guy with a half-ass mohawk haircut and walking 5th calle in bare feet…WTF? why? and the usual ‘come save the pagan babies’ christian groups are flocking in/around…think about this: add up  the air fare, the hotel and food costs per group and what they could do with that $$….work with a decent NGO, donate the $$…there’s probably something about getting the matching T-shirts, the group photos and the feeling of righteous ness that warms the cockles of their hearts…cockles? don’t tell/don’t smell…

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the last of the bigger/thicker/longer….’don’t go there….croquet shafts came out perfect!…now, when i can afford to throw a wing-ding…nope, wrong word…some kind of a semi-genteel event, eh?  fresh out of wing-dings after yesterday and the much anticipated

‘Author’s Night’ at Sophos in the City….the day was a classic screw-up/chinese fire and boat drill…GG Foto was to be my interpreter and she thought I was driving…and I thought she was driving…wrong, vodka breath…last minute shuttle to the City…200q…taxi home, 200q…two hours early…ok, gave me time to set up/write on the white boards, check out the o so spiffy city women in zone ten…7pm…7:15…7:30…no one in the 20 chairs…zip, zero, nada, bagels and zilch….fine…i can take bad news, humiliation, and scorn…hey, I’ve been married 4X, ok..the good side is that i got to know/talk with GG for several hours…a very interesting lady..

the latest edition of the monthly series of ‘Our Man in Antigua-stan’  is out…on time…whew..bigger, better, thicker, longer….wait..this is sick..

food/bar news….Micho’s Gastropubs new menu is xlnt…Spiro might..repeat..might be doing a regular Greek food thing…moussaka/giros…god, i wish…i miss good greek food…Pappy’s BBQ is now doing sandwiches etc at Ocelot and I had a taste of the brisket….fabulous…if I wasn’t still stuffed from lunch and the two vodkas, I woulda etc…check out their menu…this is a good thing for those of us who miss the weekends only BBQ at the usual Pappy’s on 6th calle..

and the newly vacant ex-Wokco space, previously La Esquina? yep…new tenants, old time bar owners in town, looking to move outa their place on 6th avenida..they used to be just past the Arch, if that’s a clue…dunno…Wokco spent a ton of money on remod…some say 50k, some say 100k…but they did it well..the question is…that space is cut up into little rooms…how well will they do going head to head or mano-a-mano with La Sala?…remember the mantra about ‘critical mass’ and i’m not talking about La Merced..Sobremesa  is kicking out their walls/jams and that might work… and this town has some very tasty women, even if it’s not Zone Ten…

Mayra of Mama’s….Flor of Dasha, Claudia #1 of Da Vinci…Marbel, where ever in the hell she’s working this week..and the ex-Mayor’s daughter, Carmen? whew…tight pants, tight blouse this morning, fabulous smile…good thing that I’m  old, decrepit and only my  imagination still works….this is Friday, right?

go out and whip it up…yeah, Ocelot has changed a bit..its still ok…change is good…repeat that..change is.. 

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