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Posts Tagged ‘fusion’

once more, from the top….the new Tropicana Hostal/Bar is serious competition for any…repeat, any other hostal in town…yes, Monica has done wonders with the Jungle Party and the Black Cat imploded and La Terrazza was coming along, with their Pub Crawls…but…and a BIG but…Tropicana is the new 800 lb gorilla in town. thanks to Rory and Laurel, with some help from some friends, the place is the best…ok? the best, hands down. Of course, for an grand opening all you have to do is say ‘free beer’ and  you’ve got a party on your hands…James Mullen/Laurel behind the bar, Christophe dishing up snacks..don’t take my word for this…go by…a swimming pool? yep..right in the middle, with wood planking…great rooms, ambience..

La Calle is changing hands…Spiros and Alabama Bob take over Oct 1…and a name change: the Exit Inn…with Spiros back to doing what he does best: cooking…yep, ceviche returns(and his is the best)plus burgers and….lamb kebab…greek style…I’m in….and maybe, just maybe, they continue the Thursday night vodka special…any brand, 15q…so, I sucked down two Stoli’s…30q…

Sobremesa is doing a special take on Guatemalan ‘tipico’ food tomorrow…7pm…and adding spice/flavors to  what is…mild/unimaginative…and per the rain or lack of it, it was a quiet aka dead night for restaurants…even Piano Mike and the tasty Andy Z. Luna were looking at a empty room at Travel Menu…everyone..repeat, everyone was at the Tropicana opening…even the ever tasty Marvelous Marbel was alone at Casbah’s little pub..I would’ve stayed/kept her company but the rain was starting..

so…if you’re into whiskey and in Bodegona, check out the Crowley’s…’tipo whisky’ the label reads..but if you read the list of ingredients on the back? 98 % alcohol, 25 whiskey…is this legal? who cares?..La Taverna? slowly dying, as is Ocelot…why? 6th calle is the new center of town, with more bars per block than anywhere else…they’re not the best but they have sucked up the business..the Snug, Travel Menu and so on…north 5th is over/dead..4th calle is restaurant land, with Micho’s and Sobremesa fighting over the biz..Tartines, with ‘the best terrace in town’…a joke..and dead..Fusion getting some action, along with Mamma’s…but not much, not on these rainy September nights..it’s generally a slow month, so take a vacation and shut the doors..and Mayra of Mamma’s…the only person in town who is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America?

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even by Antigua ‘standards’ there weren’t any of the ‘unindicted co-conspirators’ at La Taverna for the usual Friday night gathering…hmm? Dr J was there, James Mullen stopped by to add some content but I left, to go across the street and talk with the lovely Mayra of Mamma’s…and in the doorway of Fusion, along with Alex? you know, his  cantina in back? La Calle? drum roll…it’s being taken over by Spiros and….Alabama Bob!  I’ve always liked the look of La Calle and this might well be a ‘game changer’ for Nido Antigua…the short-lived ‘Backyard Bar and Grill’ departed a while ago (who knew or bothered to check?) and per Spiros, he’ll be doing some occasional cooking back there…AB is kinda dazed, considering being of the other side of a bar, for a change.

and so, it’s the beginning of the end…today, tomorrow and monday for the annual craziness of  Independence Day in Antigua…the parades, the drums, the parades and the costumes. I figure that by Monday everyone who can walk will have marched in at least one parade. Yeah, it’s a spectacle and a free one, so every villager from miles around comes to town. If you haven’t seen a baton-twirling majorette in go-go boots, this is your chance. I’m waiting for the older ones to do t heir stuff(struts,you know)….the parades tend to screw up the traffic patterns, so if you’re driving/walking, etc..

on the way home last night, I passed Casbah’s lower bar, which had a bevy (4) of babes working the bar…yeah, one was the always delectible Marbel…she is such a ‘package’….I would’ve stopped for a ‘final final’ but I’d already been to the well more than usual. 

nd yes, it appears that the Captain and I are finally getting to Zacapa and beyond next Tuesday…and being driven by one of the more lesser seen ‘unindicted co-conspirators’…the phrase ‘strange brew’ coames to mind but will be interesting, one way or the other. I’m a little concerned about our lodgings in Z-town…the captain had previously said that he had a friend with a finca nearby, etc..but when pressed to describe its proximity/location on a map…uh…and yes, he’s been there before…this will sort itself out by Tuesday, I’m assuming.

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You probably don’t want to look up the definition….ah, the rains, the buses of kids brought into town, the crowds…and this is just the beginning of a LONG holiday weekend…get to the bank/atms now, before the money is drained and you’re sucking by Monday (money-wise, that is)

if and I repeat if, the reported number of registered ‘sex workers’ (234)in Antigua alone(I asked that specific question)is valid and…and there’s another group of….uh, free lancers, are they tuning up for the festivities?

discounts, ‘specials’…again, I’ve been told that around the evening,  Burger King and the hotel across the street, plus the little park between Antigua/Joco…well, you tell me…I’m busy…screwing with the so-called printers in this town, who don’t answer…’yeah, I’ve got copies of your last book cover and yes, I’ll sell them’….right…how about a price, dipshit?..o gee, forgot to include a price…

Per Neil of Micho’s there’s a storm blowing in from the Pacific side, thru Sunday…o fine..perfect for tomorrow’s little overnighter in Monterrico with HBT (with side trips to special places only he knows about)…right, no camera, for this trip..

Sobremesa/Pappy’s BBQ teaming up with the Mimosa Mamas for a two day brunch blow out…11-2, Sat/Sun..expect me there for Sunday, assuming that HBT doesn’t get me thrown in jail for whatever…and 3pm, sunday, Reilly’s La Esquina for a photo shoot of ‘Corn Hole’…whatever that is but I’m loading up with fresh batteries..’went by early for a look at Fusion/Nido Antigua’s art exibition….spel chuk..exabition? exibition…screw it…showing, ok? ah…ok, but not great..no prices, no red stickers for ‘sold’ marks…gimme panza verde, ok?

and yes, another triumph of  ‘hope over experience’….that little cafe spot around the corner from…corner of 1ist calle-6th avenida, the scene of many disasters…? yep, new faces, looking at signs(not good) and dreaming of making it big in Antigua…and another vain attempt, next to the perfume shop on 5th calle, across from organica? more dreams waiting to crash…

and yes…mold, again? yep….

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this just in…Dishualded aka Dishwater,is quitting…various factors added up…not a big surprise…and Laurel Baker of Reillys? going to work at Ocelot Wednesday night?

‘Action’ Jackson, good pal/roadtrip buddy, is playing his unique brand of roadhouse music at Travel Menu, Fri-6:30, Reilly’s La Esquina, Sun-3pm and Cafe No Se, Mon 9:30 or so…drop in or by…

‘funny how certain holidays in the US come/go without any sense of personal involvement…had I been ‘up there’ by now, the bbq would be underway, maybe the talk of school starting, the renewal of a football season or the trading stories of what our children are doing. Here, in Antigua, there’s little, if any of that, to remind us of the changing of the seasons, yet again.

About all we have here is the monthly go-around of closing restaurants, newly opened places of hopes and dreams and yet again, another tale of ‘WTF’ were they thinking….the Cargo Room is gone, space taken over by a friend of Jim O’s….the new guy supposedly has a degree from the Cordon Bleu(pronounced blew)in cooking,,,as i recall, Lex had this dinky 4 burner gas range which might not encourage fancy cooking….Lex? pulling shifts at Ricardo’s Tabacos y Vinos on 5th ave norte…Marbel, working at Reilly’s La Esquina and I heard that the previous incarnation at Dos Mil is about to expire..for a number of reasons, of course..

Travel Menu now doing burgers…heard that they’re good.  What was Caffe Opera on 6th Ave norte is now some kinda spanish paella place….opening night was dismal and their signage is, like Punto Zero, made of vinyl banners…not conducive to a sense of permanence or  optimism.

the 2nd edition/local print run of ‘A Year of Driving Dangerously’ is ‘under way…Frener says 2-3 days, except he didn’t say  ‘which’ 2-3 days…I’ll know more on Wednesday night about this…yeah, the first run sold out, Sophos, the big book store in the City wants some ($$) and the beat goes on..more little ‘hole in the wall’ coffee shops opening around town…hoping against hope, that somehow they will be different..Monica’s jungle Party expanded, into a deli/small restaurant…great idea! capture those hostile…no, hostel people before they leave the premises and take even more of their money…how much long can Pan y Fantasis keep the doors open? that $$ deli on 3rd calle, that was Deliciosa…count the freezers/refrigerators/electricity-sucking devices and multiply by a few thousand quetzales  per month and then count the foot traffic…um, damn little..and there’s a new frenchy kinda restaurant in Fusions’ mall…Fleur de Luis?  no, Lis! in what was Rafa’s Bistro(and they’re sucking for biz also…this is a tough town, baby…four or five restaurants have a lock, four or five bars lo mismo and if you think  you can buck that, go right ahead….buck away, buckaroo!

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in a way, kind of a metaphor for stuff going on around town…the signs are off at what was Riki’s and Ixcot….Braulio’s is four months behind in their rent and even worse…wurst? that old time place at the end of 1st Avenida with the great terrace views? nailed/stickered with a big SAT tax poster(so I was told)….alas…if so, another low blow to an already bad year of tax/paperwork/screwups…

a movie being shot in A-Town? interiors this morning along 3rd calle and this evening…the City Hall closed off, with chicken buses, extras and so on…wtf? judging from the equipment, a low budget kinda flick..yeah, I’ve been around movie making/makers for awhile…the clue is the number of cameras, the dollies(not the ones in spandex) and the director and his staff…

and yes, the ‘beat’ goes on…tomorrow the big City for topo maps…searching for the long lost Spanish Fly Silver Mines by Hue Hue next weekend..oops…spanish fly? did they fly or did they use buttons? who cares?

David Hoffman was questioning my count of 8 times that Pinata Boy was thrown out of Lava…he was too busy kicking the stuffing outa PB, who is supposedly at the Lake today…and yes, the so-called ‘security guard’ got canned that night for non-performance of his duties..

Piano Mike outa here Friday for a month…back to the YouEssof A for another stab at romance..applause, please…just like Woody Allen once said, 90% of life is just showing up and as one who’s been down that rocky path of hopes, mopes and dopes…let there be luck!

and thanks, one and all, for comments on my health ‘issues’…the cold, that beast, has apparently been banished from my bod…no meds today…well, almost none…’maintenance’, you know…ask Hogan about that stuff..

supposedly the old Pangea space had a looky loo…a potential renter, ok? a lady with a white little dog on a leash, a t-shirt that read “I Love Las Vegas’, a sugar daddy and no…no sign of gold lame slippers..lame’, not lame…altho one is as good as the other..Allen at the ‘Menu’ dishing out the dinners, Scott S/Pablo A at El Cazadore for an early dinner, Luciano workin’ the bar…Marcel probably laughing a lot, somewhere, at getting out while the getting was good..dos Reilly’s with as many staff as drinkers..and when will the old Reilly’s on 5th ave norte ever reopen? they keep dragging in trucks of sand, gravel and what-not…has it been two years since?..1st calle by Merced…lights out at the bars/restaurants…a quiet night in town..and yes, a few more familiar faces from the frozen north in town…welcome back!

Fusion dead, El Nido Antigua, the shopping mall in back equally so…altho the Choco Museo across the street? maybe its the hats or the staff but they continue to drag in people..and on…the proposed expedition to Puerto Quetzal this week? off…had to leave at 5am Wednesday…wrong, scotch-breath..the only thing i do at 5am is make another visit to the….WC..and yes, for those who are into pork…jameswdurham2@ gmail.com is still in business…the very best in pork chops,sausage and so on..pork me? no, pork you..have a great week…yeah, the weather is weird but.. 

 

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Guatemala, where the strange is just another dose of the daily news and the weird is cannon fodder…no mudder, fodder…I published this last night and this morning in one local paper, the headline read that he’d already been deported, back to Belize…no other confirmation, anywhere…

http://www.examiner.com/article/lawyers-guns-and-john-mcafee?cid=db_articles&no_cache=1354933329

so…? so what? who the hell knows?  or cares, you ask…in a conversation this morning with a local business man, i made a heavy side-bet that…if he (McAfee)were back in Belize (or not) that his phone is ringing with offers from Hollyweird to ‘do’ the story…c’mon…think about it…lawyers, guns,drugs, money, hookers and bizarre behavior? is this not a description of half of Congress, Oprah, Phil Spector and so on? my bet was that within six months we’re looking at a made for TV movie, shot on location…oops..wrong word/connotation…’filmed on location’…and the Belizean sleazoids will sign on as ‘consultants’…oh…who to play the staring role? that whacked out person, likewise ‘eccentric and unstable’…Tom Cruise…life, as usual, defeats the efforts of comedy, art and insanity..pick your actress..Demi Moore, Pam Anderson, Seka…obscure reference #2

yep..missed it again…the ol burning of the Devil…(set for 5pm)..every f$#@! year i think, you know…you really ought to go see it/shoot photos..but as I said earlier to Nicole…i’ve seen the Devil already, in so many times/places/hallucinations, that once more really isn’t going to make a helluva difference..Nixon, for example…LBJ…Tom DeLay…peyote, DMT, mescaline..cha cha cha…Jimmy Swaggert..no, I never really liked acid..

the streets were somewhat empty, somewhat full..5th ave, first block north of the park, doing fine…Casbah/Studio 35 looking good, early..Red’s dead, that new place, La Velada on 1st Calle, with the Spor Bar sign? closed…oops..not good..4th calle,the golden gulch? Sobremesa slammed, Neils’ Michos the same, Tartines? Francois, at the door, looking lonely…Fusion/Mammas? slow…DaVinci? two..yes, 2 tables!…the road/highway screw up at the entrance to town is likewise screwing up a lot of city folks who don’t want to deal with even more of a traffic problem..perfect for Christmas, eh? 

speaking of Christmas, i’ve decided what i want…a real stocking stuffer…Santa, you bastard…come thru for me  this year, goddammit..I’ve been good…and i can produce signed statements, if you want…

is she hot or what?

James aka Santiago/Bull Durham? looking 110% better! color, gaining weight and walking(gingerly aka slowly)…great news…and the ‘pork chop/rib connection? back on, again..briefly…place your orders pronto…jamesdurham2@gmail.com for next week (I’m in for chops)

is she hot?…yeah…if I can find a really really big stocking..’got the fireplace…and if Santa(you stingy bastard) comes thru…

the impending road trip to Take a Lick Abaj? not quite set in stone…more like set in Silly Putty but we’re talking about a time/place for leaving next Wednesday…progress, Antigua style.. 

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holy freezin’ jesus…three weeks til the end of the world and a month til 2013? yep..check your calendars, people.

the ‘unindicted co-conspirators’ meeting in the patio at Ocelot…and where the f…..k is J.R?…no, not THAT J.R, he died early this week…the other guy, even more secretive than Howard Hughes/Frank Vesco/Sammy the Bull…

 

that pizza place on 4th avenida, across from Ocelot? a for rent sign in the window…next to the shuttered/closed dead as a doornail Riki’s…who’s gonna take over that space? with the impending closure of Ixcot, that block is gonna be lights out after the first of the year…DA Mayor’s big Jimmy SUV parked in front of City Hall..that poor…well, relatively poor bastard…cooped up in jail with Portillo, his assets seized…am I the only one who waves at his daughter? (and she’s well worth waving at, believe me)…

that newish restaurant, La Velanda or whatever..in the old Fusion location, corner of 1st calle and 6th avenida? that’s the place that missed the ‘T’ in Sport Bar…well, they’ve added a nice brass ‘T’ now…so? so what? spor bar, sport bar, sperm bar…take a look at Red’s and decide if you want to open up another sports bar in town…idiots..

Santa, aka Frank May of Nim P’ot, passing out gift baskets which included some of his fresh organic produce from the Farm…that’s a neat personal touch over the cellophane wrapped canastas from Bodegona…

Jim aka Santiago Durham returns home from the hospital/surgery/ball/hip thing tomorrow..yep, I’ve been drafted…and that vinos y licores place on 5th calle P, towards La Pena del Sol? someone just upped the ante/stakes and has added a lot of new brands of liquor(jack daniels etc)plus a walk-in humidor well stocked with Cuba’s finest…the stogies are a bit dry but that’ll change…a very good assortment, better than…well, maybe..no, on 2nd thought, I think the nod goes to them…if they had Montecristo #1’s…or San Cristobals…hmm…and thanks, Mike D, for the salacious gossip/scandalous babble about a mutual friend…whew…this town is incestuous, ‘n’est ce pas?…frenchy talk for ‘no shit’…

http://www.examiner.com/article/on-the-road-to-retalhuleu

it appears that there might be a ‘road trip’ coming up…the principals are nodding their heads..film at eleven..last but not least: is Alex Ferrar of Sobremesa the most talented chef in town? or creative? ..had some of his latest, mezcal ice cream…Don A, George S in there early, noshing away..(eating) and yes, I missed the performance of Nutcracker Suite, Handel’s Messiah and i gave away the ticket to the ballet for tomorrow night..after i get Bull Durham up the steps tomorrow to his f….king apartment and squared away, I’m taking the week off..yeah, you say…I’v been ‘off’ for a long time…no shit.

 

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