Posts Tagged ‘atms’

the town at mid-day very quiet…what few shops were open you had to wonder why…very last minute presents?….very strange, unless it was better than staying home. Even the street artists were late setting up and the streets? covered with more firework remnants than ever: the only better remains i’ve seen were in Amsterdam, on New Year’s Day…an inch of slush and the streets were pink with paper..yeah, the Dutch…go figure…Maggie M at the counter of el Portal…she’s such an elegant lady.

so…Mexico…spending 52 million dollars on tourist promotion for 2012…plugging all their ‘end of the world’ spots…and how much is INGUAT spending? let’s see, after salaries and perks…52q?  the exception may come next year with a new head guy and Walther F, the local el jefe…if their email announcements of things, happenings and events are any clue, they’re tryin’..what kind of tourist slogan could they come up with? Come to Antigua for the end of the world, after you use the ATM’s at BAC?  gotta give the PNC a tip of the panama, at least for today…they’re patrolling the hellouta the streets…’visibility’..

ever wonder if the street guys who sell the flutes would do better if they learned the theme song from a Fistful of Dollars? or if the guy who’s schlepping the brown Maya figurines would do better if he spray painted them gold? I did all of mine that way and they look great..and no, I didn’t stay up for the midnight orgy of fireworks…earlier there was a parade on 4th norte…that was enough..I’m getting jaded, it looks like.

Sarah G’s back from Hell A…Caffe Bourbon open for the breakfast semi-crowd and even Lili La Prensa took the day off…I  kinda am, still twitching with the graphics for the book cover and blurbs for the back…you think writings’ easy? get it down and then get it edited and then do the publishing route plus graphics? and then marketing? helllooo…watch the pennies roll in, one at a time..hey, I’m retired…what else would I be doing? no, not the Del Rey…Christmas sucks there…oops, wrong adjective…

its beginniing to look a lot like Christmas

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no..it’s not another ‘gay’ joke…just got to thinkin’ about the usual cakes sent, delivered or passed around for Christmas…those heavy impossible to eat suckers with nuts, fruits…no, don’t go there…i guess that the inevitability of Christmas is sinking in but at least, sans TV…well i have one but it’s never on, that i don’t have to watch commercials nor count the remaining shopping days.

‘ran into Brielle duFlon early, on her way to work(she’s doing both the Galeria de Arte and dos Reillys’…asked about her show at Panza Verde last month…or was it two months ago? whatever…she sold 8…yep, 8 outa 14 paintings…major talent in town…and a note from John R (one of the original ‘unindicted co-conspirators’)reminding me of a name similarity to  John R. Wilbur and his presence (still)on the Interpol list…nope..no news from Roatan..’haven’t seen/spoke with Max in a while, nor have any of my island/Copan contacts answered any emails asking about details..’last i heard from Max is/was that the ‘case’ is slowly being dealt with..Reilly’s Guatemala City new location opens next Friday..16th..

neil c’s last night at ocelot is sunday…6pm start of the evening shift…go by..i’ ll do so..peter the hodge and LM checking out on sunday..back to the YouEss of A for a while…might end up in Puerto Vallarta for a spell. 

lethargy is still me this week…is it the full moon or the  lunar eclipse? ..no urge to go out at night…however…weird/good news re BAC and the ATM stuff…a local gringa had her account hacked a week or so ago…so, you say? the bank CALLED her to ask about any suspicious transactions and then…refunded her loss within a week…WTF! is it possible that BAC is finally…finally taking steps to stamp out this local problem?

the only thing that Guatemala is #1 these days is in credit/debit card fraud…’could be worse..Honduras has the #1 spot for murders…they’v just enacted a law providing for only one person on a motorbike…hmm..didn’t Guatemala have that law in place? right…lotta good that did…maybe the new US Naval base on Guanaja(Caribbean/Honduras)will choke off some of the drug activity passing by…kinda doubt it…Roatan being known as Coke Island won’t change, given the support of the locals/politicians..kinda like the Peten region..too much $$$ to change things…maybe, just maybe  Otto can make a difference: this country’s taking a beating in the press..La Prensa reporting that tourist $$ are down…wow..big news..ask any of the local proprietors(owners) I’m of the opinion that this country is too big to effectively get a handle on the drug traffic…not enough radar, cops or strike teams…too much graft…alas..again, ‘welcome to Chinatown, Jake’

ok…off the sap/soap box…smile, Polly Anna…

the evening stroll…fabulous full moon(the hair will start growing on the back of my hands shortly)..more personnel changes in the wind…one of our(well, mine)more popular duos not gonna be playin’ at a certain place. Why? who knows? the venue hasn’t changed, their music hasn’t changed but the crowds have…go figure…Neil C! ran a bar tab last night that’s historical…i counted 26 various cocktails…oughta frame the tab but it runs to both sides of the paper..Alex B of Fusion…also shakin’ his head at the inconsistency of the trade…up one day/week, down the next…ah..that ex-mex place next door, the shortly lived ‘709’? whatta tale of deception/ripoffs between the owner and his so-called partner…ask Alex..it’s so very very Antigueno chisme…however…come February that space will be hosting something new and different…with Sr Bell and a group of locals, there’ll be ‘Antigua by/for Antiguenos’..foods, crafts, cha cha…again, ask Alex..

the O’lot patio and space at Lava…f….king packed at 6..the new morena version of Flor wrapping up her shop, off to meet the sweet Gina C at El Portal…and Ms C is a grandmother? one of the better looking grandmother’s I’ve ever seen…ah, the Bistro Casola by night, Zoe’s clothing shop by day..5th calle..as a concept,  I like it…wonder where they put the clothes away?  ..lotta folks going thru major changes…Peter the G’s taking a position in a different kind of real estate market…once this financial f….up that’s worldwide gets resolved and once that Otto gets his hands on the reins of power in this country, who knows?  I think i’ve got it that the Pelicanos restuarant in Monterrico is for sale…these last few months have been brutal for that town…the floods, the ….fill in the blanks…and thanks for asking about the book release…next week it goes up into cyberspace and gets translated into various ‘languages/codes’ by the “Meatgrinder’…really…nope, don’t ask..I don’t get it but so what else is new? time to go howl at the moon.. 

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no, not ‘that’ kind of fairy land…and no snide remarks about singing ‘don we now our gay apparel’ either…it was the night…Agua at sunset, wreathed in white cotton candy, the park lit up…the Cathedral…El Cazadore Italiano’s great Christmas lights blazing away, as a beacon in the night to hungry diners…of which there was a dearth(shortage)….where the hell are tourists/locals eating out tonight?  don’t go there, either…the places that were closed added up to about the same that were open..closing on a Tuesday night is a good decision, given the season..alas, Pangea didn’t even have their lights on, except for the kitchen..looks like they’re throwing in the napkins on that deal…odd, how fate dealt such bad cards to that location/business…

I, however, have had embraces(hugs)from two of the most beautiful women in town today,  so on my planet, all is exceedingly well..John K, massive truck seen on 5ta norte and tracked down to the bar at Dona Leonor’s…back from a shortened trip to Argentina…medical problems with a family member…fixed and he’s leaving in a few days…talking about our Top Five Faves for restaurants in this burg..he mentioned Epicure for dinner…hmm..haven’t done them…Alex of Sobremesa now up to 50 different flavors of ice cream…is this some kinda Guiness record thing? who cares?…they’re all dynamite…wait a minute! that could be a new flavor! pow! goes off in your mouth…(dont’ go there)

JM Cervantes con familia plus Gina C at El Portal..he’s one of the more interesting people (to me, anyway)in this town…cop, yes…mind, yes…thinking, yes…and where the hell is Fred of Ravenscroft? two Sundays in a row a no-show at the park…yeah,he’s 83 and biz is ‘slow’…i worry about him…another great intellect with an amazing  past…a true Antigua ‘character”

ah..the demonstrations in front of the Palacio de Capitanes General? all day…great and good for them…renting out the place is atrocious and a slam  in the face for the city, the consejo and whatever…where’s Da Mayor in this? Adolfo…you’re great and you’ve done wonderful things for the city…step up, dude…get on the picket line, dammit. You’ve got another term in office(which pays 8 grand a month..USD)so what’s the problem?

yeah..i stopped off at Ricardo’s T&V…no ice for the vokda…vodka…alas..the marvelous Marvel of Hug#2 there, looking smashing in black…tight black..use your imagination..I did.

no news on the ATM ‘workaround’ with the new PIN# trick…the old number worked again this morning: i’m not sure whether to be happy with more $$ in the pocket or disturbed that I’m still at risk from the ‘Boys from Bogota’

Allan of Travel Menu on top of things..a few plates, a few imbibers..one of my favorite places these days and yes…i’m still thinking about Peter and LM checking out in a few days..seems to have been a year of people leaving…some well-deserved, others missed…Mark Francis, JP..Category #1…Carla Berryhill and now these folks..as they said…’hey Jake, it’s Chinatown’..o well..and I miss that pirate aka John Wilbur.

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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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it’s December the 3rd, we’re at almost a mile in altitude and we’re walking around in shirtsleeves at 7pm?…the stars/planets are out, the moon’s hangin’ overhead, globos are being launched in the park..fireworks, marimba bands playin’…how much better than all of that?

La Fonda Peter Real on 5ta has a street display…a floppy eared burro and two guys dressed up as shepherds…no, not the germanic type…arabic types…passed by Ricardo’s T&V and who’s working there now?

hint#1...she also works at another bar in town

Peter the Hodge’s going away party tomorrow…Santa Ana, with a 4pm start time but i don’t know if this is on G.S.T time or not..passed Da Mayor, getting into a compact japanese kinda car…we waved…no more big Jimmie Suburban? or is this some kinda incognito thing?
no, it wasn’t a Henway….what’s a Henway, you ask? oh, about a couple of pounds…
upper 5th waiting for the crowd of imbibers…and waiting..and waiting…a new bistro on 5th calle, by the Moviestar office…Casola Bistro, i think..and a new jewelry store also going in , next door….look..i didn’t have a pen or my camera…i’ll try to shape up tomorrow but i’m not promising anything.
‘thought I’d flirt with the ATM’s today…haven’t used one since last February/March’ debacle of the the Boys from Bogota episode…called my boutique bank in Sausalito and asked the question about remote changes on the PIN….nope..no can do but we can mail you a new PIN #…fine…does the old-previous PIN # expire? yep, in about 2 business days…this may be a good Plan B for traveling, especially after the recent brouhaha with those scumbags at BAC..I’ll know by Monday if the account was hacked…
ran into Alex of Sobremesa early, opening the ice cream shop…has yet another new flavor…Sweet Potato Pie…damned fine stuff…he’s outa the new flavor, Gingerbread…kudos to Alex for the travel guide idea, btw…the ebook will be out by the 14th..the cover art is done..
re the closing of El Caminante…there’s some skulduggery(love that word) but all will be made queer….no, clear…soon..nope, my lips are ripped…no, zipped…it’s all just another Antigua ‘story’…kinda like the Cafe Flor saga with JP…ran into the very tasty Victoria this morning..whew, that woman dresses to kill/thrill and it works. Plus she sings like an angel..
one of the El Muro babes
 yep, that’s her…Ricardo snagged another of Antigua’s finest…she’s still working at El Muro but I don’t know when…’not my problem, hey?
the ceviche thing at Lava/Ocelot is working…’seems that folks like the stuff on Sundays…a few brewskies to wash it down with and….fine…after watching ‘she of the infectious laugh’ get sick at Dos Mundos and then the wife of a friend have her lip paralyzed for a few weeks, i’m not doing the stuff…go ahead on it..Spiros’ stuff looks great…Nadoush? Nadooosh? the new place on 6th ave norte, now open..’wish ’em well…that’s a dead zone. With the coming of Las Cebollinas on 5th calle, that region might now take off…funny how the center of gravity changes here but then again, i haven’t been here long enough to really have a clue(about much of anything, i admit). As with Valentine what’s his name from the sci-fi novel, i’m just a stranger in a strange land(but i love it)..have a great weak end..

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