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Old 03-08-2009   #256 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Bumper View Post
Gracias Amigo....but.....they also contain a full day's recommended dosage of deadly, dangerous, deliciousness.
I know it, but keep on munching them,
Around here we have a fresh tortilla with some guacamole and a chunk of chicharron, or instead of the guacamole a nice spoonful of salsa pico de gallo.
Also you can use the chicharron instead of totopos when having guacamole.

Quote:
a very tasty but way overpriced spinach salad (130p)
130 is not way overpriced, is extremely insane, How much can the spinach cost?

Any chance you will try Pummarola, I have never been there but I'm curious.
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Old 03-08-2009   #257 (permalink)
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130 is not way overpriced, is extremely insane, How much can the spinach cost?
When I saw that price, I figured it would be huge, and with its own sailor man, but nope in both cases. It was good, but just way out of line..

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Any chance you will try Pummarola, I have never been there but I'm curious.
Could happen. We've heard good things about it, but haven't made it yet.
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Old 03-09-2009   #258 (permalink)
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Day 20 - March 8 - Sunday

Rut city. Ladies off to the beach. Mum’s last day for la Playa.

I might just trim my beard today, but I better think about it for a while. Don’t want to blow the most exciting thing I’ve got to look forward to without giving it the in-depth consideration it deserves. Maybe I should take a nap before I do something rash.

YWG Don & Deb dropped by after noonish with the intention of getting me off my butt for some lunch and liquid refreshment. It’s nice to have keepers. Man....it was HOT out there! How hot was it? Well, I saw a dog chasing a cat, and they were both walking. BA-DUM-BUM!

Tried Las Delicias (?) on the corner of Ave 5th and Calle 22nd. It’s another spot that’s been there as long as we’ve been coming to Playa, and we’ve walked by it hundreds of times, but I don’t believe we’ve ever eaten there. D&D had a guac starter that came with salsa that was superb, nice and spicy. I had a bowl of marvelous tortilla soup. As good as I’ve ever tasted, and I eat a LOT of soup, no matter the temperature. Then the three of us all had house salads, Don and I with chicken, and Deb’s without. Matched the meals with 6 - incredibly cold Dos Equis and 2 - Coca Lite. Deb gave the place a bonus star because her pop came in glass bottles. I understand that’s significant to Coke officianados. Total bill, including the 10% tip they added was about 650p, or so. I’d consider it reasonable. Service was timely and polite, and I wouldn’t hesitate to be a return customer.

A traveling musician struck up a relationship with a happy group of 8 or so at the table next to ours. His first offering - by request, I suspect - was Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven. A gutsy effort for a single dude with a solo acoustic Spanish guitar. He actually did a pretty reasonable job, though I think he might have done himself a damage trying for Robert Plant’s throat-ripping style. Next, his audience asked if he knew American Pie. He responded, “Not very well. Do you all know the words?” They replied, “Sure.” They lied. Gringo tourists are not to be trusted, especially if there’s alcohol involved. Well, it wasn’t the traditional version of American Pie, but nobody seemed to mind, and it was sung with enthusiasm and gusto. Pretty much everybody managed to get on board for “Bye-bye, Miss American Pie. Drove my chevy to the levee, but the levee was dry. And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye, singin, "this’ll be the day that I die, "this’ll be the day that I die." Somewhere, Don McLean’s ears are burning. The minstrel’s final offering was sort of a Nawlins sounding bluesey number, in Spanish, I think. Don was of the opinion it was about a barrel of cats being dragged behind a tractor. I wouldn’t argue, his Spanish is a lot better than mine. We went our separate ways, after the concert, and I hit the rack for a nap. Like I said, it was HOT, and that just sucks the life out of me. Bumpers are temperate climate creatures.

The heat still had me wiped out a few hours later when it was time to tie on the feed bag. I decided to give dinner a pass, but Mrs. B and Mum headed off for Los Almendros, on Calle 4th between 5th and 10th. I was the last place on Mum’s “must do” restaurants, and tonight is her last night in Playa. It’s a perennial favourite of ours, and at least once during every visit, we get there for Pescado Entero - Parilla. That’s a whole fish, grilled, not fried. Once you get past the notion that your meal is staring accusingly at you from the plate, it’s a great treat. Never know from one time to the next what kind of fish it is, and they frequently have no idea either. I guess the all-encompassing answer is “stupid fish”. If it was smart, it wouldn’t be my dinner. The ladies tell me the food at Los Almendros was up to their usual standard. I guess we’ll leave it on our list of regular haunts. They stopped off at Shasta for coffee and sinfully rich chocolate cake on their way home.

Unfortunately, I’ve heard some disturbing stories this trip about some of the tipping/billing practices in some restaurants. Actually, I say restaurants, when it is more likely a problem with individual servers, rather than the establishment. While we have as yet to encounter the situation during this trip, we have experienced it from time to time in the past, but it appears to be becoming more common. Always, always, always check your bill, and read the menu to see if the place has an established policy about adding in a tip as part of the meal cost. Some less scrupulous servers will try to work you for duplicate tips, if they can get away with it. Many restaurants will state right in their menu that a tip of "X" percentage will be added, and that’s fine. Many more will make it a point to indicate that a tip will not be included. In either case, you know precisely where you stand. Many places include a relatively small percentage tip, and if you feel the service merits it, you may tip more generously. We frequently “round off” or sweeten the pot somewhat if we’ve been pleased. Your bill should always show any tip as a separate line item, especially the ones produced by a computerized cash register, but even a handwritten cheque should show it as an extra charge. What you have to look out for is the instances where the tip has been added, and the server tries to give you the impression it has not. I’m afraid that has become more of an issue with several people telling us it had been tried with them. Obviously, it will have happened to a goodly number more people who even now don’t realize they were taken advantage of. YWG Don & Deb, for instance, ran into this at Sushi Tlan last evening. The bill produced by the cash register appeared. The total amount had been obliterated, and a number scrawled over it in felt pen. The line on the bottom of the bill that stated the tip was not included, was left plainly legible though. Don thought, “That’s a tad more than I expected it to be.” The individual line items of what they had ordered were still reasonably visible, so he did the math. Sure enough, the server had added 13% to the total he had handwritten on. When Don called him on it, the server explained it was a “suggestion” and suddenly his English wasn’t so good, though it had been just fine up until then. Frankly, I’ve forgotten if Don said he left him any tip at all. I wouldn’t have. What’s ironic, is Don says they were very impressed with the service and food, and the guy’s tip would likely have been 20% if he hadn't tried to screw them. I’m not trying to make anybody paranoid, or say that this slippery practice is an everyday occurrence, but you should be aware it’s not uncommon. Caveat emptor, and read your bill!

Music Medley: Super Concert (Popular light classics. Sabre Dance, The Nutcracker, Ride of the Valkyries etc.), K D Lang, Bob Seger, Diana Krall (Anybody who doesn’t appreciate this ladies’ incredibly smooth vocals should have an icepick driven through their ear drums).
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Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a pristine, well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally used up and worn out, shouting "Holy Shit...what a ride!!"
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Old 03-09-2009   #259 (permalink)
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Thanks for the advice. We will definately keep that in mind. So whats the weather forecast like? We will be there Thursday. Looked at the weather channels forecast but they tend to be off (locally anyways)
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Old 03-09-2009   #260 (permalink)
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I would like to go to breakfast with you and Luis...can I?
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Old 03-09-2009   #261 (permalink)
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I would like to go to breakfast with you and Luis...can I?
You're certainly welcome as far as we're concerned, m'dear. You know I can never get enough of you. Unfortunately, I'm afraid we may have a logistical problem. Don & Deb are joining us, and Luis says he can get us all in his vehicle, but I'm afraid another body, even one as sveldt as yours, is liable to cause some issues. (Mind you, I can't think of anyone I'd rather be squeezed in with. I might just get Luis to circle the block a few times.) How about you get in touch with Luis, and maybe you can meet us? Hope that works.

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Old 03-09-2009   #262 (permalink)
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Just tell me where you're going and when...don't need no stinkin' ride.
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Old 03-09-2009   #263 (permalink)
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I'll get a hold of Luis and find out where we're headed. Stay tuned.
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Old 03-09-2009   #264 (permalink)
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Just tell me where you're going and when...don't need no stinkin' ride.
Here's the note I got from Luis.

"I don't have an itinerary yet. I was thinking on visiting a few places and try some small portions on every changarro, something like a food tour.

I think you could fit in my truck.

Bob gave me an idea: he could drive and you could fit in my lap

Your worst case scenario would be riding in the back (it's a SUV), or would it be fitting in my lap?"

So, Heather, be at Casa Bumpers about 9:00, and we'll make it happen.
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Old 03-09-2009   #265 (permalink)
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Okee dokee! See you mañana.
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Old 03-09-2009   #266 (permalink)
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WooHoo!!! We can hardly wait. See you all tomorrow!
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Old 03-09-2009   #267 (permalink)
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Thumbs up Las Delicias Indeed!!!

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Tried Las Delicias (?) on the corner of Ave 5th and Calle 22nd. It’s another spot that’s been there as long as we’ve been coming to Playa, and we’ve walked by it hundreds of times, but I don’t believe we’ve ever eaten there. D&D had a guac starter that came with salsa that was superb, nice and spicy. I had a bowl of marvelous tortilla soup. As good as I’ve ever tasted, and I eat a LOT of soup, no matter the temperature. Then the three of us all had house salads, Don and I with chicken, and Deb’s without. Matched the meals with 6 - incredibly cold Dos Equis and 2 - Coca Lite. Deb gave the place a bonus star because her pop came in glass bottles. I understand that’s significant to Coke officianados. Total bill, including the 10% tip they added was about 650p, or so. I’d consider it reasonable. Service was timely and polite, and I wouldn’t hesitate to be a return customer.
Las Delicias indeed!! We're embarrassed we've walked by this place a couple of hundred times in the past 6 or 7 years and never stopped before.

Everything was great!! Highly recommended!
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Old 03-09-2009   #268 (permalink)
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HAve a great day tomorrow!!!
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Old 03-10-2009   #269 (permalink)
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Wow! Thank you, Bumper.

I should spend more time on PlayaInfo, obviously.

It took me about an hour and a half to read through the whole adventure.
(That's a lot longer than to read my husband's travel journal for the same period--he's in India!--of course, there's so much more happening in Playa)
I really enjoyed it, and am now promising myself to get back to Playa, especially at a time when there are a lot of Peeps there.

But my son & his wife are now in Jamaica, so we will be making a second trip there in April (first was in January). And then there's the daughter in Whistler and the cottage for the summer, and next January's trip to Africa.... how can I fit it all in, unless I retire? And then how could I afford it?

Have a great time on your bar-hopping breakfast tour this morning.
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Old 03-10-2009   #270 (permalink)
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Day 21 - March 9 - Monday

Not very pleasant looking out there this AM, solid overcast and gray, but that’s okay. Mum goes home this afternoon, so no beach time was planned anyway. Mrs. B spoke to a cabbie the other day and negotiated a ride to Cancun at 400p. A pretty reasonable rate. She got the guy’s phone number and had the helpful dude at the condo give him a call yesterday to confirm the pick up time, fare, etc. It’s all under control. She’ll stick with Mum at the airport until she has to go into the security area, then grab a bus back to Playa. Flight is about 2:00ish. We’re counting down our last week now, since we’re homeward bound next Monday.

Remember that truck without the mufflers that I mentioned showing up in the middle of the night a few days ago? Well, it put in another appearance at about 2:30 AM this morning. I believe he stopped at the end of the street to disgorge his cargo consisting of a couple of Jamaican steel drum bands, cases of squeeze-bulb bicycle horns, bowling balls, and the entire road company cast of Cats.

Off to Cuevo del Chango to carry on the tradition of having our first and last breakfasts of every trip at this long time winner. When we first started going there years ago, you would occasionally see the monkeys the place is named for in the surrounding trees, but those days are long gone. Mum had her usual fruit/granola/yogurt. Mrs. B had scrambled eggs with mushrooms and potatoes, and I enjoyed chilaquillas con pollo with chipotle sauce. Everything was dandy. Jackie was disappointed that they didn’t have her favourite homemade plum jam. Apparently they just started a new batch yesterday, and it’s not ready yet. Mum picked up a kilo of granola to take home to Mrs. B’s sister. She loves their stuff.

The ladies were picked up at 10:30, as arranged.

I took the bull by the horns and trimmed my beard. It was traumatic. I think I better take a nap now.

Mrs. B home from Cancun by about 3:00. Everything went off without a hitch, and by now, Mum’s half way to Minneapolis. We’re on our own for the next week. It will be a little easier organizing things from now on. Not that she was a drag or anything, far from it, more energy and mobility than me. Game for most things. It’s just easier when there’s only two of you, and you’ve been together for almost 40 years. Lots of non-verbal communication, and you finish each other’s sentences.

Dinner in the condo, after an extended cocktail hour on our terrace. Mrs. B whipped up some spaghetti with a commercial sauce from Mega that she kicked up with some jalapenos and spices she brought from home. Rivaled anything we’ve had at the several Italian eateries we’ve dined in down here, and better than some. I knew there was a reason I keep her around. Out for a “walk” in the evening. 5th was busy, but nowhere near as crowded as we’re used to. Stopped by the Beer Bucket and found a sizable contingent of Peeps in attendance. Folks seemed to be giving the favourite old haunt another chance, in light of the bad wrap it’s been getting lately. Regular fixture, Rocky, was on his usual stool at the end of the bar. I’d say the vibe was somewhat subdued, but as always, it’s the people who make a place, not the building, so it was a pleasant evening. We’re told by several Peeps that the greeting they received on their arrival was much more friendly and enthusiastic than on previous visits, so perhaps some chains were jerked after the shaky reviews they’ve been receiving of late. Only stayed for a couple of drinks and some conversation, but most folks seemed to be running on empty reasonably early, so we headed North towards home. The trip took much longer than you would expect because we kept running into folks we knew every few feet. Even had some people approach us that we didn’t know. Lurkers, mostly, but Ben makes us pretty identifiable, and we’re always pleased to meet new people.


I’ve noticed the dispenser built into the freezer door of our fridge has 5 buttons on it. “Cubes”, “crushed”, “more ice” (Wassup wit dat? You want more, push the other buttons again.) The last two buttons are “water” and “water light.” What the Hell is water “light?” Is that like air “light”, which I suppose you would get when you escape a big smog bound city? Now I’ve heard of “heavy” water, which of course is used in the nuclear industry. (If I recall, it’s produced in Nazi industrial plants hidden in Norwegian fiords, which the Allies are trying to bomb. But I digress.) Anyway some of the greatest disappointments of my life have been light beer, light cream cheese, light potato chips, etc., so I pushed the “water light” button with a degree of trepidation. It looks like regular water. It tastes like regular water. Seems to have no smell, like regular water. I looked real close, and it appears to be a couple of hydrogen atoms and an oxygen atom. So, what am I missing? Will I only have to go to the john half as much? Would my car rust at a slower rate if I wash it in “light” water? Will it change the game of curling and ice hockey for all time? Geez, “light” water. That’s like chicharonnes “light”, which would be.....well....frankly.....nothing. (Hey, I don’t make this stuff up, y’know. I’m just an observer.)

The Music Box Says: Randy Travis, Queen (I miss you, Freddie), Smooth Jazz.
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