Monday, April 29, 2013


Once in a while, when things aren't working, you need to -- at least -- question your assumptions.

Or get back to First Principles.

After Antigua, I'm headed out solo.  It was the original plan for the trip -- the First Principle.

As I said at the beginning of this blog, a lot is happening/was happening/happened in my life -- most of which I cannot even legally talk about.

[which should give you just a glimpse into the Alice Through the Looking Glass world I can't describe.]

And all of which was decidedly and profoundly negative and destructive.

This was to be a trip that answered questions, presented possibilities, and brought some renewal, on any or many of a whole host of fronts.

But, so far, it involves more compromise than I can afford.  By definition, this trip had/has to be about me: my pace, my needs, my budget, my idiosyncrasies, my well-being, and ... did I say me ?

I think things are worked out vis-a-vis my eyeglasses.  I'll owe just over $40 in customs, duties, import taxes ... whatever you call them ... but they should be at the Antigua DHL office at about 4-5pm, tomorrow.

What changed ?  Nothing, really.

But there was a different DHL employee working, today, with a textbook "No problem !" attitude :-)

Meaning ... a day or two after tomorrow, I'll bid Antigua a fond farewell, if only for now.

I beat Ye Olde Fever through copious napping and seriously delayed over-eating.

Today, I also stumbled into a barber shop to get my hair cut, and put my life in the hands of a straight-razor wielding Guatemalan  who -- I had to remember -- should NOT have wished me ill.

I think I was in the barber chair for over an hour.  My hair takes all of about seven minutes (with nit-picky, detailed, straight-razor clean-up), so the rest was about surgically removing a few days' growth from my ugly mug.

There's something ridiculously sybaritic about an old fashioned shave.  It screams "luxury."

And ... in my case ... it must have screamed it a half-dozen times, because I THINK that's how many times he lathered me up, and shaved me.

He got to whiskers not even schedule to appear on my face until June 2013.

I mean ... I am scrupulously and meticulously clean shaven, and may have had the contours of my face altered slightly.

But ... dang, Jack ... I look good :-)

What price, hedonism ?  Q80 (USD$11.00), plus a tip.

Truth be told, it was cheap rent for a reclining chair, desperately needed to take the weight off my stomach, stretched beyond capacity by a strawberry-pineapple cheesecake slice and a 12oz cup of Guatemalan hot chocolate.

Which the barber thought was an extraordinary snack.

But we agreed that "it doesn't matter.  Too much is still too much."

He offered me the use of the chair for a while, after.  I could have kissed this guy, or -- considering the fine job he did -- let him kiss my smooth, if still rather unappealing, mug :-)

It's downtime time.

That happens a lot, here, in the soporific, generally-Southern latitudes of ... The Gulag.


  1. A clean shave and a haircut deserves a photo don'tcha think? And do u still look mean enough to scare the bandidos away?

  2. I've never relied on a fierce look to deter the banditos.

    Horrible Spanish, a very limited vocabulary, and a toothy grin are far more disarming, in my experience.

    I've brought several to incontinence, in my day, through their unrestrained laughter. At that point, it's an all-out sympathy play :-)

    I'll see if I can get a pic, but ... that would mean using my new Gorillapod.

    Oh. Wait. That's a GOOD thing :-)