Archive for October, 2014

Little lessons make big differences

Posted in Makin' moves, Tiempo en el sur, Waxing Idiotic with tags , , on October 15, 2014 by robdc

How to blend in in a South American airport:

1. Erase any idea of urgency or the fact that anyone on earth has to be any place at any specific time. If you’ve ever had to be anywhere, forget what that felt like.

2. Make sudden erratic vector changes as you walk, constantly. Sometimes you may even want to stop and walk in the direction you just came from, almost like you forgot why you got out of bed that day.

3. Do you have kids? awesome, bring them, ALL OF THEM. Do you have nieces and nephews? Bring them along too! Hell, just pick some kids up off the street, it looks like that’s what everyone here does. Apparently they make great travel accessories.

4. Carry obscenely large luggage and plenty of it. Everyone here is carrying bags so large that they border on the ridiculous, 2 or three bodies could easily fit in each bag. It looks like the same effect as when a really large person picks up one of those tiny beers and it makes them look like even bigger giants but in this case the people are the tiny beers.

5. Let the larger your party and the more luggage you have both effect the speed at which you do anything inversely, so if you have 11 kids and 25 human sized bags, a snails pace is the accurate speed to shoot for.

OK, now that I got that out… We have landed in Rio! The beach is beautiful and the beach town feel is very much lingering in the air.

IMG_5140[1] IMG_5197[1]

We spent the first morning talking about different stuff we had read or heard about how to move through this city without problems. Places not to go, what not to wear and how not to get gotten.

Much to Dave’s delight, immediately after this long and drawn out conversation as we are walking down the beach something hits my foot, it’s a cartoony green goo. It looked like ectoplasm. Knowing that no earthly bird secretes anything like this and the perfectly clear and bird-less sky immediately above me, I kept walking but asked Dave “did you happen to see where that came from?” to which he replies “I did, just keep walking.” So I did and then through a combination of hand signals and quick looks we were both very much aware of the man who was tracking us. He had expertly squirted this gunk on my show then waited for me to flip out about it, at which point he would conveniently come out of the crowd, brush and gunk antidote in hand. Unfortunately for him, no flip out came. We just kept walking and he kept tracking. Then, thinking that I hadn’t seen it yet, he comes out of the crow and points at my foot saying “aw, look at what the birds did, need some help?” Brush and paper towels in hand. The idea is that I stop, he helps me get the crap off my shoe then the demands for money start. I kept going and he got nothing but anyone coming to Rio should be aware that this type of thing is lurking around every corner here.

While at a bar I left Dave alone for 2 minutes and in very Dave way, when I returned there was a new member to our party. The guy was nice enough and soon his wife joined us. Drinks were had and before too long we ended up making plans with them for the next day. Dinner and drinks with the Patels was a damn good time and we ran around Rio for the evening.

IMG_5183[1]

The next day Dave and I headed up into the mountains to see Christ the redeemer overlooking the city. It had been pretty foggy but we took a chance anyway. After getting to the national park we paid for our tickets up to the top we were put on a bus, a girl in the back gets scolded for eating Doritos on the bus so she puts them away. half way up to the top, she has a mini rebellion about the food and chooses expulsion as her form of protest… She barfs all over the bus, not missing Dave or I’s legs… of course. Luckily everyone else manages to keep it together.

Finally we reach the top and it’s stunning… for a few seconds out of every minute when the clouds clear. We still managed to take in the whole scene and it was pretty breathtaking.

GOPR6059_tonemappedAll in all it has been an astonishing stay here in Rio and I can’t wait to run around here for the next few days.

Ceje lo,

Rob

Advertisements

Oh you fancy… Brando Calrissian’s Bachelor Bash

Posted in 'MURCA!, Makin' moves, Waxing Idiotic on October 9, 2014 by robdc

Brando and Natalia are finally getting hitched! Of course, that means that we must have the obligatory bachelor/bachelorette parties. So small groups of good friends migrate to DC with the expressed intent of celebrating two of the best people we know and having a damn good time.  I’d say this sums up the start of the trip pretty well:

IMG_5035Since Brando is my gastronomical consigliore I knew the focus of the trip was going to be good food and drink but I had no idea what we were in for. We did the stuff we knew was good like Toki which I don’t mean to down play, because it’s blow your pants off good, but we had been there already. We went back to the pug and shenanigans but the real treat was on Saturday. We started off at Founding Farmers where the candied bacon was the star. 

IMG_5030Sorry for the blur but I hate being the person taking pictures of their food, it weighs heavier on my soul with every passing day so food pictures may become more rare in my photo library. The idea of sugary bacon is the stuff of dreams though, and if you ever find yourself in DC, do yourself a favor and try it. 

The main event was, of course, the Saturday party event night. Christian, as best man, had a pretty high bar set for him but I have to say that he pulled it off in spades. We were told to dress “pretty nice” so when we got to the first spot of the night and it was just a normal bar, I was containing my initial feeling of “what the hell?!” Christian walked us to what I thought was the bathroom and a small waiting nook where we were greeted with champagne and told that our seats would be ready in just a minute. After our short wait we were escorted into the Columbia room which only had 10 seats and required reservations for quite some time. We had apparently been set up for a 3 drink menu which consisted of some delectable concoctions, the elements of which we were encouraged to try on their own. So each drink was accompanied by a shot or two of it’s main elements, this was heaven.

We stuck around for a round after our tasting menu, I asked for something rum based that didn’t have the citrus-lime flavor that is so popular with present day mixologists, I was greeted with a delightful concoction and a shot of it’s main ingredient.

IMG_5051

Also Brando really loved his Fru-Fru drink…

IMG_5052Then we went to the Russia House. This place had a real authentic feel to it. The door guys had all stabbed at least 2 people with ice picks and all the servers probably had some idea of what the inside of a shipping container looked like. I’m pretty sure Viggo Mortensen was sitting at the bar by the entrance. Either way, the food was damn good and their Moscow mule is unrivaled in my memory. Brando got a little roudy and smashed a triangle drink all over himself but I’m sure that has nothing to do with what the Columbia room did to us.

IMG_5048Then we met up with the girls at the Mambo room and the dancers danced while the rest of us enjoyed our drinks and made fun of them.

IMG_5058The weekend was full of laughing to snorts and good times but we even managed to get some culture in. I didn’t know the Smithsonian had a second air and space museum outside of town by Dulles airport, it houses some of the larger aircraft that would have, undoubtedly, been more than difficult to get into the heart of DC. This is also where I was able to get some of the better pictures of the trip.

IMG_5081 IMG_5086

IMG_5087 IMG_5088

F-22 Raptor, the Enola Gay, Boeing 307 Stratoliner, the god damned Concord Fox-Alpha!!!

The two things in this giant hangar that I really never thought I would get to see with mine own eyes and the absolute standouts were, hands down:

IMG_5080 IMG_5077

SR-71 Blackbird and the space shuttle Discovery!!! What an awesome way to end such a great weekend. Thanks to everyone who made it out and contributed to such a good time. See you all next month at the “wedding.”

Robbo

%d bloggers like this: