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Archive for the ‘Honduras’ Category

it was an inauspicious beginning…I overslept and the guard at the gate did likewise…I think the shuttle was on time….3:45 or so but I burnt my fingers/Bic lighting up the padlock with the bundle of keys in the dark…fine…0500 and thru the streets of Guatemalo, headed for Honduras and Copan…my big camera misfired and was left behind..

Copan? nicer, prettier and cleaner than I remembered(it’d been 3 years) and the women were superb…if Hillbilly Tom had been on this run, he’d woulda been shouting ‘Mamacita!’ over and over again…Twisted Tanya’s for dinner…superb…this usual crew was a bit short: Jackson bailed at the last minute and his replacement, Hogan, fit in nicely…or has he’s became to be called, Hogan Von Daniken…per his memories of seeing elephants and space men amongst the carvings…the ‘elephants’ turned out to be stylized versions of jaguars and the ‘space men?’…probably flashbacks…but that’s Hogan…

the ruins/museum was superb…we skipped the tunnels…seen one,you’ve seen ’em all…the currency conversion nightmare of dollars vs. lempira vs quetzales confounded  the ‘perfesser’ and me for 3 days…Hogan is some kinda mathematical prodigy aka an idiot savant…he ‘got it’..we didnt’…aka laydowns/pushovers for the local merchants and they’re dying…Copan runs on overflow from Antigua and as we know, there isn’t much overflow…we did manage a ‘blind taste test’ of 7 yr old Flor de Cana vs. 12 yr old…Hogan insisted…yep, my fave 7r old version won!…we killed the bottle of 12 yr old…’blind taste test’ indeed.

this week? Office Depot in Antigua!…Wed, 3rd calle/7th avenida…Laurel and Rory’s new Irish pub, the Snug’, opens Thursday, as par to Travel Menu…they kinda got bounced after the cleaning house of the Sunday afternoon slugfest-punchout at Reilly’s La Esquina a few weeks ago.

and my never ending search for proficiency in espanol continues..bought a great CD called ‘Country en Espanol..’…photo below…the Art Show at Finca Azotea?…lotta people,some old, some new, one babe and Mike Chrisman’s new book on sale..”Little Stories’….great/great poetry…the first book of poetry I’ve ever bought…go out and find it…fabulous Bloody Mary’s…good crowd, xlnt location, which spooked me, because I’d done/shot an article on indigo there, 4 years ago..and a Steve Wintershaw watercolor that I want…if I’d had the $$ but after Copan/currency/cha cha…I told him I’ll buy it after the First…of January, of course.. and then, there was the dumb ass German tourist who screwed us up crossing back into Guatemala, cost us time getting thru the City last night…

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not yet, I hope…the newly reconstipated…no, reconstituted crew from last years road trips within Guatemala is foaming…no, forming this week for a few days away into Honduras and the magic of Copan. HBT, our regular driver (sic) is temporarily laid up with wrist injuries, acquired by falling out of a hammock per his wife (he claims not to remember) but the Cougar needs work and the Ford truck can’t go into Honduras anyway…something about ‘papers’…as in not having any…one would think, one would, that between he and Joe M. who are old hands at Guatemalan car stuff, that this would’ve been taken care of.

speaking of cars, did anyone catch the mini-car show on 5th ave norte Sunday? it wasn’t big but there were two classics: one, a perfect 57 Mark 1, pea-green four door Jaguar sedan and the other? this country has some amazing cars hidden away but I never expected to see a Shelby AC Cobra….something I’ve always wanted to drive….yeah, I’ve owned a Jag…a v-12 coupe that cost me a thousand bucks everytime it went to the garage…

Our resident poet is now published! Piano Mike, sometimes Thespian Mike is now also Poet Mike….got his own ISBN number and every thing….he’ll be at the Art Show next Sunday, the 15th…Finca Azotea, from 2pm on…buy one or three…he’ll sign ’em..

and it looks like the old Reilly’s location on upper 5th ave, after a long time in rehab/renovation(years)is close to opening as ‘something’….they have signs outside, advertising a search for ‘meseros’…with papers, of course and not just La Prensa. 

and if you should happen to go to http://www.amazon.com/author/michaelsherer the page says that ‘A Year of Driving Dangerously’ is ‘temporarily out of stock’….how this computes to titles that are only ‘print on demand’ is another mystery sans clues…and yet another location for the output from my vast publishing empire! the Posada Don Rodrigo, ground zero on 5th ave…

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it damn sure isn’t a mosquito bite and necrosis hasn’t set in(yet)but at least it isn’t ‘brain eating amoebas’ like they have in Arkansas (and how would they know the difference aka before and after?)

I think HBT’s old traveling buddy, Joe Miller, leaves us tomorrow…a ‘short/sweet visit’….Reid C and Mike Donley due to return next month….yeah, the underlining….wtf?

‘ran into Bill Harriss, lately of La Pena del Sol…getting his van fixed…he and Mary are off to Rio Dulce, spend a few weeks on their sail boat…come back and pick up the van and take a road trip: Costa Rica, El Salvador and Honduras….he’s being philosophical about the ‘boot…’ calling it his 3rd retirement..

James aka Santiago Durham! on a new scooter and getting around again…the hip thing will have to be replaced in May(it was the cheap plastic model) but he’s ‘out and about.’

yeah, the “Year of Driving Dangerously’?….even more creative excuses from Frener aka the ‘printer’….’there was a holiday’…yeah, but you’re not Catholic and that only applied to the City and Joco. At least the Sept version of our Man in Antigua is ready to upload to Amazon.com….a couple of hotel changes, La Pena, Hector’s…and the rain has stopped…should I go out? again? why not play ‘spin the bottle’ and see where it points to?

ah…Papa Towns’ new marketing strategy!

husbanddaycare

 

Lastly/leastly…the  very lame art exhibition at Dishwater is having an ‘open house’ wednesday evening…anything that combines zen/starship and so on…etc…hey, go see for yourself…2 minutes did me a few weeks ago..’Action Jackson’ aka Dr J, now playing Monday nights at Cafe No Se and Thursdays at Dishwater…and practicing more and more…

 

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late night update….John McAfee,aka The Fugitive, arrested for illegal entry into Guatemala…oops..’is there some way we can work this out?’ yeah..back date his passport, take the $$ and say it was an administrative error…either that or the ‘authorities’ have decided to take his $$ or tie a can to his ass and get him outa town..if he’s been arrested, where do they take him? the same jail as Portillo and Adolfo(Da Mayor of Antigua)…this story never quits..

“Yep! But Antigua is far from being an ideal world, it is one saturated with same businesses, plagued by delusion and obstinate behavioral disorders. The typical has been… but what gorgeous views and climate!”

I told him I was gonna plagiarize him…ah…twilight time in town, one of my favorite Antigua moments…Sunrise is good, before the air gets hit with exhaust fumes but there’s a gorgeous sunset tonight…flaming orange cotton balls in the sky…gotta go outside and take another look…the light is suffused/diffused, there’s no breeze and the birds gather in the trees before winging home. The hot dog vendors in the l ittle park in Manchen push their carts away for the night. This place is paradise and the sunset is slowly fading…what was orange is now pink and gray.

Rich Neel and Marian, on the bike…a big bike and not one of those little dinky 125 cc motos…thanks, Korey D, for the analogy of McAfee and Phil Spector…so, is it  pronounced MAC a fee or mCAFEE? the trend seems to favor the first…o boy…welcome to Guatemala. His 20 yr old twist is the niece of his attorney…the change from gray to dark brown hair/beard? shoulda hired an image consultant..shoulda gone to Honduras/Roatan, where if you’re over 65 yo never go to jail, for anything..he’d be perfect for Roatan…Coke Island, guns, parties..

Josh the guy with the pop bottle creations…Antigua style kinda guy…the sunset is over, the sky faded to gray…walk the streets of 4th calle/5th ave at twilight, catch the aromas of various cafes and the little latina lolitas out for a stroll….Central Parque and the lovers in the corners.

Kudos to Shaun of Ocelot for capturing the  zeitgeist of the moment: ‘McAfee Antivirus’ shooters of some kinda pink drink…yeah, I had two.  My RAM disappeared and I guess I’m virus free…probably oughta defrag my hard drive next…what a perfect evening in Paradise! are we lucky or what?

one last thought or question: location is key for business and parking is at a premium here…its either on the street or in some outa the way hidden parking lot…there’s no valet parking either…does this explain some of El Cazadore Italiano’s ongoing success? parking on both sides of the street…and also Epicure? just wondering?

oh…The Green Door reference…not the Marilyn Chambers porno movie…shot in Sausalito/SF…my abode has massive green metal doors at the entrance..and…more TA stuff (and not tits/ass)

http://www.examiner.com/article/behind-the-scenes-of-takalik-abaj-part-one

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I may need one, sooner or later. The added 4 or 5 blocks to town and the extra tuk-tuk trips seem to have caused a PITA…pain in the ass..yeah, i know…so what else is new? not much…nostalgia just isn’t what it used to be, as I’m reflecting on the quietness of Antigua these days.

When I moved here, there was opera, faires, festivals…the Gallo Girls, the Brahva Babes and a host of other spandex-encased models for this and that…yeah, there was more broken beer bottles and puke on the sidewalks..it was all part of the charm(to me, anyway)..one by one, the lights are going out,places are closing, the music scene isn’t happening….did the Antiguenos get what they wanted? a slow, sleepy and antiseptic town? hey, you Salvadoreanos! Come back to Antigua…no shootings, stabbings or…watch TV in your room and….

 

Walter Fischer (ex-INGUAT)says that they(he and his 3 partners)are going to have a ‘grand opening thing in 10 days (or so)…cocktails at the Palacio and a Press trip to check out the new route…they’re adding Finca Filadelfia to Juan Carlos’ old/original route..talking of 4 buses eventually but if the shuttles to Finca Azotea and the Finca Filadelfia are any clue (mostly empty) that may be premanure…no, premature..

thank you, KDP, for sharing memories of what Antigua used to be..alas, Riki’s…a franchise? Ixcot shoud be so lucky, they’re so dead…again, how/why could owners with 16 years in the Tex-Mex biz not see the advantage and take the ‘crepe’ route? and where’s Adan, the great Cuban pianist? aside from he and Ron Fortin…Nelson’s in San Francisco, recording stuff..Cadillac Hotel/Eddy Street/Tenderloin…scruffy…

per La Prensa, Da Mayor is sharing space in the same facility as Alfonso Portillo and other illustrious captives…’wonder if they get to talk with each other…gotta be some great conversations, eh? has Adolfo been given a change of clothes since last week?..a Colom sighting on a plane from Honduras this week: I didnt know that there were contracts out on him for past dirty deeds…Colom? that mild-mannered dude? something about Black Thursday..I can see putting out a contract on Sandra, if only for being ugly, stupid and so on..oh, and power hungry…ever think about what she looks like without makeup?

have a great weekend…i’m having a weak end(PITA) bring me a whoopee cushion, Santa..

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in the immortal words of Alfred E. Neuman or was it ‘Neumann?…aka Mad Magazine…who cares/who knows? it’s just another Tequila Monday in this 3rd world country we call home…realize, as i have, that Guatemala is the same size as Tennessee but with twice the population…14 mil vs. 6 mil, give or take a few..and that our hillbillies wear huipiles..yeah, the education system sucks, the highways aren’t being fixed and the beat goes on…not

Cashbar? closed on a Sunday, Monday and Tuesdays? the new reality…ain’t no bucks/$$ in town…more and more cars with for sale signs..grim faces on some of the food/beverage people, hoping that June will bring in some turistas w/$$…segue way…in La Prensa this morning a piece about an italian airline now proving service to Managua (Nica)…WTF? there’s a demand for this? and no, the airline isn’t named Genitalia…drum roll..

Ocelot/Lava doing fine..Jason due in from Mother Russia in two weeks, assuming that he doesn’t get ‘side-tracked’ in Tijuana..dos Reilly’s very very quiet, Flor of Dasha snoozing at her PC/desk, not very incandescent/florescent…maybe its just another Monday and we’re all moving slowly…kinda like those butt-heads at INGUAT…Mexico is spending 52 Fu…..king million dollars on tourism re 2012…what is Guatemalo spending? INGUAT’s new head can’t even get their website up and running…his picture is all over it but….where’s the beef, dude? tomorrow’s rare Venus/Earth/Sun thing? fuggedaboutit…even Honduras/Copan is doing stuff(when their journalists are being shot) this country has a lot of potential for tourism, especially this year…Tikal, El Mirador, Takalik Abaj, Quirigua….it’s not even 3rd world/can’t get it together/banana republic stuff…call it lame/ludicrous…I’ve lived/worked in tourist-oriented places most of my life…San Francisco, Carmel, ‘Vegas, Hawaii…even Costa Rica and Nicaragua have their act together…Nicaragua? yeah, baby..o well, what, me worry?..maybe Otto has the right idea:  legalize drugs and have Antigua be ground zero for cheap blow…that’d ramp up tourism overnight…bolivian marching powder for one and all and an idea that’s nothing to sneeze at..nobody would be eating at the 150 restaurants but the bars would be doing great..pass the straw, dude..let’s go dance somewhere, eh?

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with apologies to Maria Muldaur….whew…Fuego goes ballistic(literally), there’s a partial eclipse of the sun later today and there’s a serious/stationary storm system setting off the Pacific Coast up by Ocos/Re-hoo…not to mention that it rained most of the night here…fine..what road systems/bridges? they haven’t fixed the ones from last year or the year before…hey, ox-carts! it worked for the old folks..

John K, back from a month on Coke Island…no, Roatan, west Bay, west end…he refered to West End as being ‘bohemian’…a polite adjective, at best..on to Ecuador in a week or so(and beyond)…oughta paint the old Merry Prankster’s slogan on his incredible SUV…”Further..’ i forget the exact spelling but then I forget a lot of stuff…

what was the race in town about this morning? runners of all ages, kids on bikes, folks with dogs…Christine and Phillip Watson passed, waving..(Mr Eco-Filtro) and i thought he said that i should be on the Rape List…no…my bad left ear heard it that way..he said “Race List”…I think..I’m too old for either list anyway..

The elegant Gina C and the electric Flor Moran(Dasha) out on the town last night…and its raining again…fine…i gotta fire laid(and that’s the only thing that gets laid in this house)..taco fixin’s await..the ATM’s were down earlier…probably a cow leaning against a telephone pole somewhere.. and re Roatan…no news, Wilbur-wise…heard that he’d been in town a few weeks ago but no confirmation…no idea on the INTERPOL status and no desire to check(frankly, Scarlett)

and..drum roll…another 5 star review on Amazon.com! to quote, “the best travel guide I have ever read.”….the book was aimed at a certain demographic and appears to have found the target…

  http://www.amazon.com/Our-Man-In-Antigua-Edition/product-reviews/1468122940

am I happy, proud or what? you see, I love this town and whatever bad publicity has come our way needs to be offset or explained…tourism is the life-blood, folks…there are some that decry the kinds/types of tourists but in this times we gotta take what comes…

new fish market/store, on 6th calle, opposite Tanque Verde…dunno about the location or concept…most restaurants already have their fish connections..maybe if they called it “La Fin de Semana”….’fin, get it? sorry ’bout that…the rain is getting to me…segue-way to the witchiest lady in town, Angel of Djinn…whew…if you can top that/her, tell me..will i go back to town tonight? who cares? my boots are wet, the fire is laid, cha cha..

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