Monday, January 30, 2012

Thanks, David and Don't Forget Your Raingear!

Last night was David's yearly swan song with the lads at Mamacita's. No doubt Doug, Grady and Ted (Violin Guy) will be entertaining us in the future, but we'll be looking forward to David's return next year!

Since David's father was one of the original Liar's from the Liar's Table (sign above), it seems pretty appropriate to play at Mamacita's for his last gig night.

A number of people were commenting on how four guys could get together with their talent and love of music, from such various and sundry places (David from up north, Ted & Doug from their boats and Grady, re-arrived from California) and be in the same musical groove like they'd been playing together forever. From Tennessee Waltzing to stroking that Moon Ribbah, and up ahead to beach music, rock and sweet jazzy blues, it seemed at least, pretty much whatever takes your musical fancy was possible to hear. Having watched a lot of people play a lot of music over the years, I've seen that magic happen before; just not in a long time. Culebra is a place where there is excellent music, but not much I can swing along with from memories. It's been way big fun!

I laughed last night thinking about how we all pretend seem to expect we'll be getting on the right ferry at the right time, for this protest about the ferries not running on time or not running at all. But hopefully, many of us will be heading to the Peace Park this afternoon, to make some noise about the crazy third world on-going and worsening running of our ferry transportation system. It appears the FBI is getting involved (I should site a reference here, but I forget where I read that yesterday, maybe a translation from El Nuevo Dia) in an investigation as to what is really the truth about the MTA's deplorably remiss running of their department. Good on 'em, I say! I'm seeing this is the groundswell of the wave.

Just don't forget, if you are going over, there is some big rain in the forecast and there isn't much worse than being wet and cold (yes, people from the north, we do get cold!), so prepare accordingly.

Have a momentous Monday! Do something making a wave!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Info for the Ferry Protest

Just to have all the information in one place at one time, I've taken this English version from Karen's newsletter. Thank you, Karen. 

Here is the schedule for the protest in San Juan starting tomorrow.

Activities to be held January 30 & 31, 2012 about the maritime service transportation in the island municipalities

Vigil: “Two islands one voice”
Date: January 30

Location: Peace Pavilion, park (Condado)
Luis Muñoz Rivera
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Time: 7:00 pm to 2:00 am

Activity: Vigil of solidarity with Puerto Rican brothers and sisters. where there will be a presentation of the problems of marine transportation services and how they affect the quality of daily life in the island municipalities.

Participants from Viequs will leave from Vieques on the 3 PM boat and spend the night in the park so they should bring the necessary items!

*** There will be an artistic, cultural and educational show! ***

If you cannot be on the big island for the Monday event, you can still join the March on Tuesday.
March: “We are more than 100 x 35″
Date: January 31
Time: 10:00 am
Location: Peace Pavillion to Dos Hermanos bridge ending in front of the Capitol
-The event is a march / protest against poor service of ATM to demand that alternatives (the short and long term) are sought to fix the disaster that this service has been in 

Participants must register for transportation.
Should wear comfortable clothing, bring a hat, snack and water.

Go Team!

I've been meaning to write about this for awhile, but in the whirl of social activity it got put to the side.

When my throat was in sore need of relief while I was sick, I happened to buy some Hall's drops (hey, they didn't have Smith Brothers, which would make me feel better just from the nostalgia endorphins released looking at the package). Usually I buy the eucalyptus ones but I was sort of being my own mommy and got the cherry ones instead. Yes, with the special, even more chemicals, promised to be so soothing liquid center. Those.

I don't think I started noticing the little surprise until about my third one. For some reason, the print on the wrapper caught my feverish eye and the first thing I read was "Get through it". That was only one of many little 'pat 'em on the butt and get 'em going' type messages that Hall's has imprinted on their wrappers. And yes, this is going to sound corny, but, damned if they didn't help me feel a little better. I'm one of a big tribe who just don't take to being sick at all, let alone for weeks, with a lot of good humor. More like, let me go into my den and I'll live or die, but just leave me to it. And here were these tiny cheerleaders, which I instantly personalized INTO cheerleaders, cheerleaders who had only one mission, Team MJ encouragement. The great thing is, they aren't really sappy, unlike the special syrup center (say that three times fast).

"Be unstoppable"

"Put your game face on"

"You got it in you" (ok, some of the grammar is a bit loose)

"Elicit a few 'wows' today" (but they use words like elicit)

"Get back in the game"

"Bet on yourself"

"Inspire envy" (this one, I think they could do without. Especially when a mirror glance shows that RUN! RUN! RUN AWAY! would be the inspiration given)

"Turn 'can do' into 'can did'!"

"Push on"

"Take charge and mean it"

"The show must go on. Or work" (one of the rather enigmatic favorites)

"Don't try harder!. Do harder!"

"Don't wait to get started"

"Put a little strut in it"

And my very favorite: "You've survived tougher" Say no more, Halls, indeed I have!

After writing the above, I wondered what the rest of the web had to say about these mini-charged messages. This dramatic example of 'if ever there was an opposite response', is the first thing I found. Why go any farther? Because I'm a curious human being! Surprisingly, there were quite a few blog posts on this very subject, seeming to run about 2 to 1 against the little messages. If I were a sociologist major, I'd consider this prime material for a thesis. But I'm not, so here's what you get. Maybe it's living alone. Maybe it's living on Culebra. Maybe it's because I don't work a 9-5 job. Maybe it's just because.

Personally, the sweet help and sympathy I got from friends mixed well with these silent little emotional energy boosters. Thanks, Halls! You're still not Smith Brother Cough Drops but I appreciate the effort.

Just in case you've not read the Sunday comics yet, here is a little historic perspective on marketing. And yes, everything you'll read below is true, like the fact that Galapagos turtles are as big as battleships.

Have a soothing Sunday. Do something sweet.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

A Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On

Last night was just way big fun around town. Dinghy Dock was rocking with David, Grady, Doug and Violin Guy making some fine, fine music. Susie's restaurant was celebrating her 4th anniversary. Hannah had her cart. La Boa Brava, lit up and looking incredibly good, the night view with lights is really sweet, check it out (she also has a facebook page, if you are so inclined to look and like).

I stole the above photo off Hannah's fb page, where she thanks Arte Fango. I was going to take this photo when I was standing in front of it last night but my photo taking skills seemed to have taken a bit of a nose dive. So, whoever took this (Jorge?), thank you!!! Sorry I wasn't patient enough to wait for permission. Oops! [editor's note: permission granted! Thank you, Hannah!]

Leaving Susie's to head home (just so you know? the salmon tartar appetizer is 5 star yumalicious!), I could hear the conga boys hitting the airwaves with their 'gotta dance, it's compulsive' rhythms. On the bridge were some of of my 'I can't believe you are this tall and old enough to be hangin' out on the bridge at night!' young friends, who called me over for hugs. Can hugs ever be sweeter? Yes, they can, but those were on the hit the bell scale.

I spent most of the early evening at Dinghy Dock, watching the crowd grow, the laughter swell, the joy sustain and build. It was sort of like a weird holiday family gathering, but you really want to be there and like and love most of the family members. I was far from the only one feeling that and I think we were all more than just a little high on 'it's so good to be together' vibes, with awesome music wrapping us all up. Thank you, lads! They will be playing one more time together at Mamacita's on Sunday around 4 if you want your chance. I promise I won't sing. Really.

 On the wall, behind Doug, there are the lyrics from Blue Moon. I won a bet with David and the loser had to learn the words and sing them. How did I end up singing the words? Thank you, Linda! And just so you know, there ARE 'guitar dry bags' to be found. WINNAH!!

I got my first sighting of the re-opened gas station too. The Gulf sign is no longer there (I'd love to know what happened to it, it was a classic), and it is all spiffy painted in great colors. Mary Keller got a wonderful shot of it during the day and gave me permission to share it with you.

photo credit: Mary Keller  '

This is such a great boon for Culebra! It is being run by the same folks who brought us Costa del Sol, the market near the airport. They will be adding a 'mini-mart' soon as well. We're stylin'!

Have a saturated with happiness Saturday! Do something sparkling.

p.s. If you can contribute some food to the AWC auction, get in touch with Darlene for more informations by e-mailing her at doegaro (at) aol (dot) com. 

Friday, January 27, 2012

It's Just a Kiss Away

As you know, if you read this blog much at all, Thursday night into Friday morning is now baking bread day. Until you run out of propane, with 8 unbaked loaves on the counter. Unless you live on Culebra, where, after you freak out, you remember a friend who is usually awake at 5:30 in the morning and just might have an extra tank of propane around and just might be willing to bring it to you as fast as she can get dressed, find the tank and boogie on down the road. Which is what I had happen to me this morning. She saved the bread, saved the day, saved my butt. Thank you, Ms. T!!

When I lived in Kansas for a short time, many many many years ago, in a Mexican neighborhood, I had a few favorite things. One was where I worked, with a Head Start program. All the women I worked with except one was Mexican and they could all cook like angels.

They threw me a bridal shower and I told them all I wanted was their recipes...and for them to teach me how to cook them. And they did that! Each gift had a recipe, and on a few occasions we'd spend the whole day cooking them so I could really learn how. Probably my favorite dish was chicken mole. I have only made it a few times since then; it's one of 'those' recipes and worth every moment of time put into it. So if you are having a friend over who likes to cook, this is a fun way to spend an afternoon for an awesome meal in the evening. I'm not sure where Rosa's recipe is, but this one looks pretty close. So here you go. Buen provecho!
You CAN cheat and buy your mole sauce, and I've tasted some really good ones, but it is a lot more fun to make it yourself. It's a great excuse to buy some chocolate. Shhh!

The sky is blue, nothing likes its overcast and grey beginning from this morning. The air is a perfect 82 degrees.  It is windy, so pay attention to what you are doing if you are in or on the water, as in, don't get sand in your drinks. It's the little things.

*****BIG NEWS!!!*****
The Gulf gas station down by Susie's is now open and doing business! Someone who bought bread today told me they'd been there and got gasoline, so pass the word!

Don't forget to register to vote, you have until the end of the month, which means today, Monday and Tuesday!

There is music tonight at Dinghy Dock, last time for Grady and David to be playing together as David will be heading back north too soon. See you there!

The bread is sold, the time is right. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Have a famously fine Friday! Do something fafafafafabulous.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

A Fine Art

Good morning, gentle readers! Today, we will be observing the fine art of self-grooming. In case you are still in your jammies and haven't brushed your teeth yet, do not be alarmed, I'm not talking directly to you.

But first, from a wonderful web site with tons of information about all sorts of things wild birdies in general, is a question I'm sure many of you have wondered about. With the answer, so you won't be kept in suspense.

Q. Please could you tell me if pelicans have teeth? –Ewan
A. No birds have teeth. Pelicans (and many other seabirds) have sharp serrations on the edge of their bills to make it harder for fish to slip out, but no teeth. Birds swallow their food whole, and their gizzard (a muscular part of their stomach) grinds up the food so they can digest it. Gizzards can be amazingly powerful—some birds such as scaup and eiders swallow clams and mussels whole, letting their gizzards pulverize the shells.
Ok, now, for the show.

Each feather needs some work
Pelicans can twist their heads...bizarrely
Women who shave their armpits would love this ability 
Look! I'm not even on the dock! I'm a balancing KING!
Sorry, I couldn't help including this one
Are you done yet, Harry?
"Awright, ya look fine, let's get outta here."
Oops! I thought I'd posted this already and have been playing with new computer gadgets...where has the morning gone?

Have a tell-the-time Tuesday! Do something transitional.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sunday Funday and a few Other Culebra Moments

Yesterday I was asked, more or less, so to speak, in a repurposed phrasey sort of way, What do you do now that you aren't at the cart anymore? This was in reference to the blog and photos I used to take of street events that would pass by me. I hadn't thought about it much but it was a good question. I don't have an answer, I'm just 'watching the wheels go round and round' in a different way now. But I could definitely sit on a corner a bit more. I could. I will. I've Been Nudged.

Here's some images from Not Being On the Corner.

This dog keeps an eye on Genesis customers...and owners.

Touchdown! Actually, it was touchup, which is perfectly in line with how much I understand about football.

Continually amazing; such a big bird, so awkward, so ungainly, yet so precise,  after such a tiny object.
 The energy to dive and grab and shake it all off of that heavy body, only to do it over and over again.
There's a lesson in there...not far away..

This is some tea I bought from Superette Mayra when I was feeling particularly too-long-in-bed. It has the greatest packaging! Somehow, I have the idea from it that I will be able to dive from a very high ladder into a...say, a teacup...of water. Amazingly, it tastes pretty good too. Honey helps.

Brunch noshing at my salad bar
 And then it was time to head out the door.

Outward bound from town
The weather was full of drama yesterday. Out at the reef, we eagerly awaited the approach of a gorgeous rain storm. It slid here and there, finding its way to us. Eventually, the rain swept in and on and over and gone. It was beautiful.

Thank you, Rain God, you made some people very happy

In the dark we made our watery way back to land. Clouds had done a gone away and the stars were blaring, my old friend Orion dominating his movable space. It was good to be home. Maybe it was being on the water, maybe it was really chilly, but I dug out some light sweat pants and a long-sleeved shirt for jammies. I still have them on and the blanket too. Socks are going on next time I fill (not dive into) the tea cup.

Have a moveable Monday! Do something motivating.