Archive for the ‘Granada’ Category

plus attitude…I’m am sooo f…..king lucky to live here: some of you know that i spent ten years plus looking for this Shangri-La…’97, off to Havana….14 times…Costa Rica 34 times, Nicaragua? nah…Granada was too humid, hot and so on..every day I bless this town, walking up one street and down the other…the views, the houses, the ambience, the people, the sense of home and so on…thank you…yes, the place i’m in has a lot of traffic noise…that will change, once i find another place…i’ll miss my ‘barrio’, 4th avenida norte, and everyone whom i see every day…yep…looked at two places today: the long awaited apartment on 1st ave sur? a snarling cocker spaniel guarding three rooms that the term ‘spartan’ would be complimentary…three cells, three doors, no windows and it coulda been a drunk tank..ok…the other? up north…small, furnished, no kitchen…price is right, but…fine..something else will surface..

tonight?Ruslan’s last shift at Ocelot…murmurs of a going away party at Lava tomorrow night…decanting wine? unheard of…except at Travel Menu…Allan Garcia at the helm, pouring wine into a decanter before serving…a touch of class, completely unexpected..

the town? fulla folks, most of whom left at 7ish…bummer to bummer traffic heading back to the City..El Cazador Italiano packed with glossy City babes and their SUV’s outside, being guarded by guards…the sweet Dona Gavi offering seven hugs…yep and seven more for the road..and she’s a grandmother?….fooled me…Pangea sucking for biz, Ocelot packed, Riki’s hoping, wishing and dreaming(stick a fork in them, they’re done, as is Red’s, on 1st calle)…funny how some business’s survive, thrive and others don’t…is the location or the concept?..Mitos on 5th sur? dead…La Sala? struggling…the Cargo Room…?Los Cebollinas, the new joint on 5th calle?  ghost town..it’s all so fu…kng fickle…location or menu? there’s an element of the key people..the owner, the maitre ‘d, the servers..hands on, service with a smile…El Caz has this in spades, as does Ocelot…and the same for Fusion and Sobremesa..it’s all about being greeted and noted…and appreciated..with as many restaurants as Antigua has, the choices are many…it’s the personal touch, which a lot of owners don’t have or care to use..

and again, thanks for whoever’s buying the book…another few today…ka-ching..
Amazon’s got a new feature…check it  out…


you can turn the pages…or the back cover…read Pat F’ comment…and thanks, Pat, for offering to bring in a shipment..Plan B…the boat leaves San Francisco at the end of the month…thanks, Jon M, for the container..damn, i am so lucky/grateful and happy to be living here…paradise..

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it ‘s slowly occurring to me that Peter the H and Lisa really are leaving in a few days…i’ve followed the saga of the ‘Beav and the trials/tribulations for nigh on two years…damn…that said, having been in similar situations where the times, the gods and the fates weren’t aligned, there’s a time to raise and a time to fold…it’s never easy and only time can heal any thoughts of what might’ve been or coulda/woulda/shoulda…ask me about the dot.com days in the 90’s, por ejemplo…a killer idea(but you can’t patent ideas)perfect timing, etc etc..written up in the Wall Street Journal, newspapers and that…just that close…

how ’bout a little whining? why isn’t there a bocce ball court in this town? why haven’t the faux mexican joint known as frida’s hired the mariachi band? why isnt’ there a decent bbq joint in town? or chinese? i know…this is Antigua and this is Guatemala…shut the f…k up and suck it up…if i really felt that strongly, i’d be living in San Jose, Costa Rica or even San Salvador..it’s all a trade-off…fewer gringos here, the architecture and the climate..yeah, i know that Granada has more bells and whistles…breakfast at Kathie’s Waffle House? I’m dreamin’ of #3…but it’s still Nicaragua and it’s small town Granada…but even they have decent mexican food…why not here?

Ixcot!..that black hole of despair? packed with a crowd..family deal…their biggest night ever!    Granada? Nicaragua? why is their beef so superior? Brendan B…what happened to the promise of rib eyes to die for? …hey, another couple of days and it’s Burn Satin..no, Satan Day…i think i’m gonna do the thing at the gas station this year…wednesday, 7 ish, no?

the ATM experiment hasn’t backfired…so far…screw…thanks a ton to BAC for giving Antigua a giant black eye for tourism…bastards all and no remorse…no warnings, no nothing…the dumb signs in the lobby…hey, it’s a crime without penalties, no recourse and no remorse..bastards..it’s not enough that they have more money than god…it’s the concept of ripoff..the unecessary ripoff of tourists and locals..tis been said that it’s an inside job, which make sense…i love this town and to see it’s reputation be smeared by the boys from bogota aggravates the hellouta me..fine..i’m going to my room…see you at the gas station…bring matches. 

lastly…thanks to those of you who’ve commented on the rough draft of the ‘travel guide’…it’s different but it’s ‘meat n pototoes’…seen from the perspective of someone who lives here, travels/writes and it’s stuff that i’d want to know before i hit town…the good, the bad and yes..the ugly..thanks..’should be out as an ebook in two weeks, print version in january..

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the sound of drums echoes up my avenida…#4 and the food stands at La Merced and behind the Cathedral are fired up…the better assortment is behind the Cathedral on 5th Calle…if i hadn’t pigged/porked out on some xlnt baby-back ribs from Epicure this afternoon, I doubt if i could’ve withstood the offerings…’walked by Da Vinci’s new location: chandelier up in the entrance, the lifesize gilded angels hanging here and there…tis coming together nicely..will Christophe across the street send flowers? dos Reilly’s quiet, el gato negro night after night keeping their folks inside and consuming..ocelot visited by a large ‘affinity group’..from where, of what, who knows? Curtis bailed early, going home to rest up for tomorrow night’s ‘open bar..all you can swill from 5-8, celebrating the one year anniversary of a very successful operation(ocelot…did you think i was thinking of Ixnay?)..F2 doing some tables, Alex counting the days til he en famille depart for Florida for a much-awaited vacation plus avoiding the hellish crowds of Semen Satan, coming soon to a town near you(and me)..ran into LM of the ‘Beav, and we got to talk FTF about my schedule for going out there next week(the French ‘teleconference’ is postponed til the following week…i write these travel articles and the publisher has started a ‘live teleconference gig’ with anyone who wants to ask questions of the author(me)..this month’s subject is Nicaragua…published tomorrow..I skype up and they get to ask about whatever i didn’t cover in the article..the price of escorts in Granada? the editor lives in France, hence that connection..’observed something strangeness vis a vis BAC this morning…the ‘stand alone ATM’ in the tienda a few doors up? a motley crew of 4 or 5 and not dressed in Diebold outfits..ripping the wires/guts out of it and then dragging it down to the BAC lobby, where it now resides along side the other three ‘ one armed bandits’..I get the feeling that ‘headquarters’ isn’t quite aware of this branches ‘activities’…just a feeling…so, the $1000 question..is the branch ramping up for Semana Santa and hordes of transactions? and then fade away afterwards? just a question..the drums pound, coming ever closer…is this an extracurricular activity for the schools? o, yeah..i gotta an ‘A’ in kettle drums…good for tranferring credits when you apply for college..graduate with a degree in Boom Boom..’ran into TLGraham earlier, outside Caffe Bourbon..exchanged memories of the early 50’s, radioactivity and how naive we were about nuclear stuff…my old rolex still has radium on the numerals..light it up and it glows in the dark..maybe i do and maybe i don’t..ask ‘her’..no, don’t..damn..i had planned to go by Peter the G’s Ladies Night at El Mirador..maybe catch the fire dancer lighting herself off…looked all over and i couldn’t find a pair of shoes and a matching belt…panty hose ripped..Ladies’ Night…i look like hell in a dress…

is/was that Claudia from Sabe Rico, now working at Angie Angies? gotta go back…she looked familiar..i think i’m needing bifocals..first it was buy sex, now its bifocals…age…sucks except when the ‘experience’ part kicks in..god..there’s an open seat on a chopper trip to el Mirador next week..$499..one day, in/out…if i didn’t hate choppers and wasn’t going to the Beav…no, not El Caminantes patio…the monster mayan ‘dig’ up north..the one underwritten by the Mormon Church..still looking for proof that the Lost Tribe of Israel landed here..the Lamanites or the Nephites..who knows? those folks don’t give up..lotta money and its tax deductible..’did my US taxes today..e-filed and e-accepted by those zany folks at the IRS..if you haven’t done yours, the filing period is extended til the 18th..boom boom goes the band, off in the distance..two more weekends of this…cocktail! now its the bells…ding dong, ding dong..christ..where’s Quasimodo now that we really need him? running the popcorn stand..

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a friend up north asked about the ‘politics’ in Guatemala…as in, WTF is going on? can you say ‘sleaze, corruption and slime?’..us older folks..’watched the 60s/70’s implode and corrode, are perhaps a bit cynical about politics..’strange bedfellows’ and all that but I’ve never seen anything quite as greasy as ‘let’s divorce so i can stick my nose in the trough for a few more years’…Even Danny Ortega who now resembles Scarface is open about his thirst for more and more…

the William Shatner diet plan


‘fuck the laws…I’m running again come hell or high explosives..’ Chavez? lately claiming that capitalism ruined the Martian civilization thousands of years ago, which implies that past life regression is definitely doable in Venezuela, if not outright insanity. Cynical? not totally…I believe in fast cars, four aces, old whiskey and women in garter belts..

‘was it my imagination or were folks getting their attitudes adjusted earlier tonight?…O/lot filled…Brendan, Plumb Bob, LM and Ali…LM reported that Travel Agent Alice has a group of people ‘doing’ the Beaver tomorrow…I’m down for two days during Semen Satana…meaning at the coast..out and up the street..El Cazadore..the tasty Azucena on her phone..no, talking on the phone…not ‘on’ it…dammit..well, if it was set on ‘vibrate’..maybe..Miss E and a new admirer in a corner…hmm..Reilly’s quiet early on..Hector there, getting tuned up for later…music-wise..and no answer/word from the Rum Bum re Hector’s question about just WTF is going on, re Claudia and her daughter..La Cuadra!…great article on CICIG and Guate politics!  kinda depressing but that’s our cuntry…yes, I know how to spell..Da Vinci’s new location getting power to the new electrical meter/weatherhead..progress..what’s up with all the school kids doing interviews with gringos in the park? 2 or 3 today..several last week…think  I’ll ask about residuals or at least film credits..fuggedabout the SAG card..silly question #45..if Sweden is registering nuclear fallout in their atmosphere, is Guate getting any buzz? meaning, are we gonna start glowing in the dark? ‘might add a bit of spice to Fuego’s eruptions at night.. ‘dusted off the dinner jacket for Saturday night’s events..three, so far..and finally went thru Cashbar..Wendy up topside…this is Lady’s Night”..thought maybe I could order out…i.e, send me a morena and a rubio..as if…big surprise in the street today…passed by the ultra delicious Vanessa Dos Olivos…we’ve been FB buddies and have spoken of ‘meeting’…she’s xlnt in person…whoo…if my 2nd/3rd wives hadn’t been blondes I might be tempted to…well,  you know..i’ve sworn off gringas..and she’s not..but…again, serious congratulations to La Cuadra for the article..its spooky stuff but that’s Guatemalo…

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whew…the email chain letter from one restauranteur to the Rum Bum…’didn’t mince any words…last night?

more than one horse's ass in this town


Mary/Robin at the Ocelot…she complaining of missing the Monday road trip to the Beav…’had to fire two employees instead…Pat Sweeny went and said it was great…what’d I tell you?  my apologies to the Wart Hog Society…it wasn’t a fair label to use…javelinas/feral pigs? yeah, that works…JB of the Revue off to play golf in the morning, dragging his clubs thru the park….is Bill Harriss of La Pena getting any extra strokers per his broken/semi-repaired clavicle? I’d be asking for at least 20…ran into Desiree of DeGusta…yeah, I bought a ticket to the Noche de Chefs….the Pimp N Ho’ event at el Caminante is the same night…can I do both? is there a difference? don’t go there…just kidding…what’s up with the  F%$#@! street repair crews? some are taking/making an effort to artfully replace the stones and the others? slopping concrete over everything…idiots…add some coloring to match the existing mortar and fire the sloppy bastards…next year, they’ll be paving the streets, just like Granada did…and it looks like shit..Keri of QP
 back from China! how long has she been back? what the hell do I know?..answer equals not much, obviously…Adan at Cafe Opera last night, drawing onlookers at the door…damn, he’s good..and another ‘Only in Guatemala’ or politics overcomes love/marriage..’would be surprised if she marries Portillo, gets his butt outa the slammer and so on…the State of Siege, the syphilis story/lawsuits…Venezuela is running a close second for weirdness these days


El Muro! cranked a crowd of over a hundred last night….was it the karaoke or the ….?  so what…whatever it was, that’s an incredible feat…

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