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Posts Tagged ‘cafe no se’

someone in the park suggested that I needed potassium to counter/offset the muscle cramp in my left leg…fine. ‘Bodegona outa bananas, so I took the next best route…Oxaforte….yeah, it also contains codeine so my leg is getting the best of both worlds…if a little is good, is more…better?

I heard of the poetry reading at Cafe No Se tonight…first it was at 6pm, then 6:30 and then 7pm…fueled by copious amounts of Ilegal Mezcal, piano by Seth Monfort…gawd…I can only imagine the place by 9pm, but medicine/self-dosing raised its’ ugly head…well…let’s just say that I got as far as Dyslexia earlier and limped back to Ocelot for the usual 5pm gathering of increasing inebriated…no, ‘sparkling conversations’….’dripping’ and ‘as long as there’s a pulse’ were the buzzwords…Neil of Micho’s? whew, his lady friend…and took the accolades for his superior steaks(rib eyes)…go road-test one and see if you’re not convinced that they’re superb..I’m not usually a fan of Guate beef, as I think that Nicaragua has the best in Central America..but with Micho’s…damned good..

Bob aka Whole Wheat still on the fence about next week’s road trip…there’s this day known as Valentine’s…and if you’re in a relationship and space this/that day, you’re paying later, with interest accruing…and thanks, Reid, for the many happy memories/mammarries of the Del Rey in San Jose….mammaries? spel chuck it…’glad to know that I’m not the only dipper in that pond.

and we’re losing another long-time Antigueno, John Korte: married to a long time Antiguena who owns serious hotels here and the Lake? found his ‘spot’ in Panama..by the beach, and bailing….these are two great people who brought something to the table in Antigua….they’ll be missed and the IQ level of town just went down several points, as well as the ‘class/style quotient’.

Surprise! in the mail, at Caniz this morning was the February/Amazon proof copy of Our Man…yeah, the 12th or 13th edition….great back cover quotes and a fresh quote, price-wise from Copia Fiel….Frener et al keeps coming up with great new excuses for why they’re not…etc, etc..

c’mon, potassium….is one more ok, safety-wise? am i going to be operating heavy machinery tonight? If i called now, I could cancel her ‘house call’…and this is the 9th and last day of candles for the departed Dobie, Kayla..RIP, old girl..a replacement has been found from AWARE but she’s half the size but with the same coloring..welcome to the finca, chica…this has got to be ‘dog paradise’…

tomorrow night, at Cafe No Se, is a staff blow-out for the Ilegal Mezcal crews…’should be highly entertaining, so if you’re in the ‘hood, stop in for …..bring a seatbelt..and the return of another ‘snowbird’ Barb the K…who left early last year for some serious medical stuff..surgery/chemo…all we’re missing is Joe Collins of Houses to Homes..

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I think I might’ve had too much..all this time I’ve been thinking(sic)that i’m 67…wrong, scotch-breath…68+….screw…was it the Leap Year Effect? or too many Baktun’s?

Nelson Lunding, our home town troubadour, leaving us for a while: off to Oaxaca/Puerto Escondido for some kinda music fest and playing with some serious musicians..Alex of Sobremesa, working on his next book while serving patrons…yeah, we spoke about getting in the ‘zone’ and how to focus…I dunno how he does it, frankly.

Lava? slammed for Salsa Night by a horde or two of folks in hawaiian gear…apparently left over from last night’s Pub Crawl  organized by Carla B..and the usual weird conversations around the patio for Slappy Hour…drugs/smuggling stories..

Hap/Hogan minus the other guy, getting on the bus for San Pedro Sula, Tela and La Ceiba this week…oh, and the Bay Islands..and the bogus watch story? one was exchanged for another and it was equally bogus…jeez, at least Francisco is consistent, eh?

some kinda bead store going in next to Riki’s…ex-Riki’s…Ganesha…Ritual, on 5th avenida, going outa biz…20% off and stuff is going out the door…the ex owners of Caffe Bourbon have surfaced, across the street in a clothing store…I wish them well…good location, nice stuff.

Ilegal Mezcal’s staff from all over, descending on Antigua/Cafe No Se next month and that should be the scene of some aberrant behavior, even more than usual(if that’s possible). ..i really should go by, as it’s been a while…look, I’ve been in a rut, ok?

caching! another month of Amazon $$!…not much, btw, but it’s money, ok? keep the Euros and pounds coming in, eh? and yes, another road trip shaping up for February…Baja…Baja Verapaz, someplace I haven’t seen…Hill Billy Tom is the driver but we haven’t assigned any rooms yet, if you know what I mean…I’m waiting to see how the Ford pickup with the big V8(a gas-sucking hog)runs uphill..knowing HBT, it’ll be passing chicken buses on blind curves and nobody lives forever…I apologize for the lack of content or meaningful stuff herein…it’s just a Monday, ok? i didn’t get around/out much…I’ve been having a bit of ‘woman problems’…no…first of all, she’s a woman, then a Latina and then a Guatemalteca and then a Catolica and then….what more? you’d think that I knew better, right?…where’s the ice? a cocktail, anyone? yeah, there’s another category but I’m not going there…

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you had to be there, I s’pose: a pickup parked outside of Cafe No Se about 5pm on Saturday, Michael Tallon, John Rexer and a couple of workers schlepping in small cardboard boxes of the latest batch of Ilegal Mezcal…’caught up in the frenzy, I missed if each box had four or six bottles of Joven but there was a helluva lot eventually stacked in the back. There’s been a drought of this in town…you know, those wacky Mexicans and their manana attitude? not really: John’s just created a monster that consumes this stuff world-wide and since each batch is hand-crafted, etc…have the labels been changed? they look spiffier/more elegant….”don’t drink it too fast” he said to me(several times)hell, it’s still sitting on the counter, unopened.

yet, another Beauty Pageant yesterday! last weekend we had the Queen of the PNC or some kinda police pageant and they(the contestants) kinda resembled…ack, how to be kind/nice? (don’t)..The real Miss Antigua pageant attracted the cream of the crop and what’s left isn’t A-List material. Yesterday, gathered around the Park and on the sidewalks for photo-ops, were the contestants for Miss Bombero and her court..we’re scraping the bottom of the beauty barrel, folks.

It’ s been two days of gustatory pleasure, which is why I ain’t been around at night…Friday Santiago’s suberb Tecpan ribs on the barbie and yesterday the most xlnt lasagna from Pan E Fantasia, Deliciosa’s replacement…someone said that Luciano made it and I thought that Pavarotti had died…The DelightfulMiss M and I made a dent in it, whoever the hell Luciano is…’flavor-wise it reminded me of Angie’s gorgonzola raviolis…if it’s pork-related, contact Senor Durham…jamesdurham2@gmail….maybe, as with Mary Kay/Herbalife, maybe I can get some kinda rake-off going…Herbalife/Getalife? another Utah-based Mormon multi-level thing, here in town? yep…in the El Jaulon building. Who the hell is buying from them? what was the name of the older MLM hustle? ah, Amway!…..ever have one of your ‘acquaintances’ call up with the ‘pitch’?…they gave ’em a really good script to use, as I remember.

the town packed with people, even…tourists! yes, foreigners/auslanders with shorts, cameras and bewildered packs of a dozen or more. Andy, our superb mime, doin’ his number on 5th avenida, the usual crowd of 50 giggling. He’s good…drop a 5 or ten q note in his tip jar, eh? zo? wonder which Beauty Queen group will be posing today? and the Big Question…will Da Mayor march at the front of the parade on Wednesday, as usual?

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brain-wise..maybe that should be brain-dead, cuz that seems to be the theme for the night..stopped in at O’lot and Carla B said there was a birthday party af Cafe No Se for ‘fill in the blank’….”tried to doublecheck this twice, with differing answers: it wasn’t the end of the world, as the consolation prize was dinner next door at Angie’s with…yeah, right..’her…hey, this is business’…and the ravioli with gorgonzola? outrageously good…Frener cranked(finally)the latest 25 of the little book that could, updated as of last week.

Ron Fortin and Adan the Cuban pianist talking on the street outside No Se…trying to get a gig together, which i think would be the musical coup of the year: each is/are superb at what they do..hey, i think so..the usual crowd of miscreants spilling over from the 5pm Lush Hour…even Robt de Oro who met two nice gringas…Amber and the other lady who’s name i forget, except that she’d spent time in Sonoma/Sonoma County, one of my old stomping grounds….I had to dash off at six per the  printer and picking up ‘her’…saw Robto + the two at Sobremesa later..we’re all still laughing about the ‘writ from Alabama’ and about the only thing to worry about would be if this 300 lb gorilla in  overalls, a John Deere cap and the name of Bubba appears around here…some people…no, make that a LOT of people seem to think that the law works like it does on tv…wrong, popcorn breath…it goes on and on…and then more on/on/on…fuggedaboutit,  in other words, and get a life.

Karla H holding down Whiskey Den tonight…Nelson out and about, gathering take-out food at No Se…well, that’s what he told me..TLG, one half of the Mescalitos inside, waiting to crank up later, and Semana Satan is next f%$#@! next week…’been told that half a million people are descending(coming) here for the  Show of Shows, now bigger that the original in Spain..and i thought I’d escaped the freak show by moving to the edge of San Felipe…wrong big time, vodka breath…the Finca is Station of the Cross #1…o boy..another New Year’s Day resolution blown to hell(get outa town)…maybe if I’d gotten the plastic Jesus concession(for the dashboard)…hmm..next year? hum along with me…’wish i had a plastic Jesus, etc..god’ll get me for this, hopefully later…like just before tax day, april 15th..’dear IRS..’sorry but i can’t file because i’ve been raptured/ruptured..is that legal? given my ‘experiences’ with the IRS, they trump even God…that’s it..I’m going outside and howl at the moon with the dogs and i presume that tomorrow is Thursday.

 

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‘changes, changes…ripples in the time/space contiuum that we know as Antigua.Pangea loses neil craig today, their star/ace-in-the hole chef…the lounge,oddly enough doing a bit of biz for the better-dressed crowd…up for sale and what was a December dead-line is now…make an offer…

dos Reilly’s doing a full house early on..Henrik at the helm, keeping an eye on things…like a few others, he’s sensing changes in the local fabric but as with the rest of us, not sure WTF is going on or coming next. One of my ‘indexes’ for trade has always been the El Gato Negro hostel across the street, one of the best or certainly top two, along with Monica’s Jungle Party…they were back to being packed tonight(EGN).

‘went by and in the new deli on 4th ave sur, before Canis/Cafe Flor…picked up a business card and lost it somewhere, but the good news is that they have ‘high end’ goodies..proscioutto, serrano ham, great cheeses..and a good selection of wine…nope, didnt make it to El Muro’s ‘Ladies Night’ or Lava’s similar promotion…the dress didnt’ come back in time from the cleaners..Whisky Den? Karla H doing what she can to promote the place: as mentioned, a raffle this Tuesday…50q per pop…50? well, that’ll cut the action..for a bottle of whiskey? who knows? but, she’s plugging the hell outa it. Nelson, Hector et al scheduled tonight at 9:30…’caught ron on sax earlier..as usual, great..tomorrow night..Adan at Caffe Opera. about 8 or so…Cuban Standard time..I’ll be hanging in the door, listening…as the bar can’t make a martini to save their ass…

the salty beaver, now up for sale…attracting ‘action’…being shown this weekend to a ‘foreign investor’ and then again next week to a gringo that i know..the two local businessmen that had the inside track ought to be thinkin’ about the question: are they in or out? as always, money talks and bullshit walks.

5th norte? Frida’s doing a few tables and Studio 35? closed again and on a Friday night? Como Como open and the Med Cafe next door? closed all week..wtf? Sangre, supposedly bankrolled by bad boys..open/no action..Sobremesa having a quiet night…and about time..Alex is tired..painting, writing, cooking and…thinking up new ice cream recipes..oh..a local bar owner woke up in the street at dawn…stripped/ripped  but the DPI and driver’s license was returned…a bit too much mezcal at the infamous Cafe No Se…not that none of us have ever done that…but, once is enough, at least for me..yes, I confess that I’ve kissed the cobblestones once since i’ve been here..’sorry to see Pangea fade/fold…it was a great concept, perhaps doomed to failure with  the differing ideas with the principals and the general economic times..riki’s/el cielo reportedly on the ropes, $$ wise..what seems to be working is the ‘spa’ concept…Minoshka, who seems to have a store on every street…offering a 2X1 pedicure for $35…go to Carmen’s Salon Creativo on 2nd calle/4th ave and have a 2X1 for $20 and a helluva lot better foot massage.. 

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Cafe 2000, newly remodeled in and out, is set to open tonight at 7pm…whether or not everything will be ready is another matter(I’m takin’ side bets that it won’t be at 2-1 odds)but that’s not my concern. From the new look, espresso machine, plasma TV’s and assorted sports memorabilia on the walls, one would assume it’ll be a sports bar. Now if they can just find some sports and their dates.

Late night update…they weren’t even close to being ready…supposedly tomorrow(saturday)and for sure, absolutely positively…Monday night.

Update on the missing pneumatic blonde usually seen at the family table at a certain restaurant to the south…she’s back! or is it her identical twin? and the prodigal son, also gone for many months, at the same table! the odds against this event are huge and you coulda really stuck it to me…was I hallucinating? has the mezcal eaten my forebrain?

Ready by seven?

Ready by seven?

For those of us whose belt needs new notches or if you’re just shopping for a spiffier scabbard for your trusty machete, Jose’s leather shop on 3rd calle, between Sobremesa and the Variedads Thai tienda(thai varieties, WTF?) is a walk-in portal to the past…faded sepia photographs and newspaper clippings from the days of yesteryear adorn the wall over his workbench.

 

 

 

Don't sneeze

Don't sneeze

 

 

Days of the past

Days of the past

And…one of the classier(and more beautiful women in town) has returned from Norway(WTF?)and back working in a jade store on 5ta norte…Victoria!  welcome back, flash that gorgeous smile and keep on wearing those elegant outfits.

A big tip of the panama to Frank of Nimpot for this months full-page ad keeping us abreast of things…I think I recognize both of them(the models, not their appendages)but somethings are better left unsaid…’glad I got this off my chest.

and last but not the least…thanks to Karmen G for getting me to the El Muro bar last night…terrific place(and I’ll be back). Preceded by numerous rounds of mezcal(I think maybe 4-5)at Cafe No Se, which was being surveilled by three cops across the street, El Muro is a superb little friendly place to avoid some and meet others. Ximena Murillo runs a great joint with superb service. Peter Glover of Bamboo Realty was noted, along with his date, a stunning Latina that raised the temperature at the bar. When the writing on the walls and ceiling began to make sense, it was time to go.

 

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No one’s home…Palacio de India appears to be shuttered, closed and getting ready for their next reincarnation…no, that doesn’t mean they come back as a flower.

He's back! sort of...

He's back! sort of...

In defiance of doctor’s orders, Bill Harris of  La Pena del Sol tapped out a few beats last night before being given the ‘hook’…the long recovery from the detached retina operations is still a ways to go but the beat goes on, one way or the other…in the meantime, he’s keeping an eye out for you.

There’s some kind of a soft opening of some new bar tonight, somewhere on 5ta norte…amateur sleuthing has not produced the exact time and place but…film at eleven.

‘and a tip of the panama to Karmen Guevara for sharing the NY Times article about John Rexer, Cafe No Se and the background of the illegal(no longer)mezcal he’s importing…I suppose some field testing is required…damn, the things I do for science.

And…the rains have returned!  o blessed downpours that settle the dust, inspire the birds to sing and bring a set of muddy footprints into the casa: for whatever reason(probably brain damage), the scene from ‘A Clockwork Orange’ comes to mind(sic) of that version of ‘Singin’ in the Rain’…yes, by October we’ll all be thoroughly sick of the %$^&#! rain, but for now….refreshing.

What...me worry?

What...me worry?

Two part harmony on 4th calle poniente, usually by Picadilly…there are only so many good places for beggars to beg(outside of McDonalds is prime)because they’ve got to be where the loose change walks by, there’s only a few moments of exposure to induce the passers-bye to cough up the odd quetzal and they’ve gotta look worthy, i.e, the girl who writes with her feet, the occasional one-legged guys with crutches and the Mayan ladies with babies: I’m not saying that they’re not coin-worthy…the best are the world-class beggars in Delhi and other parts of India, where there’s a beggar’s guild and the choicer spots are leased,  por ejemplo, but if you’ll notice the same people are usually in the same places(Marketing 101)…drop a spare coin in the hat/bowl/hand…better there than the piggy bank at home, no?

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