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  • hardie karges 11:33 pm on May 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Brazil, Dilma, Portuguese, SNL   

    Note to SNL: Know your language(s)! 

    Hey, I love Saturday Night Live, but I expect them to do their homework, if they want to play en Las Grandes Ligas.  CNN does, BBC does, as does Al-J (no comment on Fox).  So here’s a quick lesson on Brazilian Portuguese: ‘D’ followed by ‘I’ is pronounced like ‘J’.  Got it?  So ‘Dilma’ is pronounced like ‘Jilma’, Maya Rudolph’s comely affectations notwithstanding.  And if you want to get into it further, then that ‘L’ is pretty much chewed up and swallowed whole, so more like a ‘W’, okay?  Think ‘Jiwma’.  Like when the taxi driver in Manaos repeated after I booked him to the Hotel Continental: “Continentowww… Are we good now?  Party on, dudes. Now you’re ready for prime time…

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  • hardie karges 3:11 pm on May 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: -, Belize, Central America, rasta, reggae   

    Time-Travel 1977, Belize Say You Will: Faded Glory, Pan-Carib, Cuba Libre… 

    Continued from previous…

    March 1977

    The border crossing from Guatemala is no big deal, and the countryside of Belize (British Honduras) is largely empty, prime territory for Mennonite immigrants.  Got cheese?  We go through the Brasilia-like planned-capital of Belmopan, which is tidy, but no one lives there.  That’s why it’s tidy.

    BELIZE   3/3-5

    Belize City is something of an eye-opener, the first time at least.  This is prime Caribbean culture, plopped down smack into Central America.  By this time I’m hanging with a couple of American guys, and everybody’s trying to be ‘more reggae than thou,’ this being the Classic Era for reggae, and ‘Roots Rock Reggae’ the hottest thing on the charts.  One of the guys befriends a local, who’s gonna’ show us the sights, i.e. shantytown.  And it’s an eye-opener to be sure, tin-roofed shacks and rolling spliffs mixed with tobacco. (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 7:38 pm on May 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply  

    Time-Travel Guatemala 1977, Coban to Tikal to Belize: So Old-fashioned… 

    continued from previous…

    February 1977

    SEBOL

    From Coban north the road gets rough, north and south-bound traffic alternating days (the road is narrow, get it?), as the road winds gradually downhill.  It’s a lonely stretch, and by now I’m starting to feel a bit isolated, and lonely, wishing I could speak English with some fellow travelers.  There are a few at the junction to to Lanquin caves, but they’re going the other direction.  The locals have a very basic existence, the tourist enclaves of Atitlan relatively luxurious by comparison.

    If the rough road from Coban to Sebol is long and lonely, from there it gets even sketchier.  There the road stops altogether, almost anyway, and you have to take a boat north to Sayaxche on the Rio de la Pasion.  Sebol itself is not much either, men playing cards at night by generator-generated light, so when the two German girls show up, I’m quite happy to have someone to speak English with.  The room costs fifty cents a night and has a dirt floor, albeit hard-packed.  We finally get a canoe out of Sebol after a day or two… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 5:41 pm on May 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Coban, , , Kekchi,   

    Time Travel 1977 Guatemala City to Coban: After the Earthquake… 

    continued from previous…  

    February 1977

    GUATEMALA CITY

    Guat City isn’t really so bad on second glance, and Pension Meza is the place to be, dollar a night WITH breakfast.  Maybe the most revealing–and appealing–thing to me is the congregation here of people from all over the world, Europe especially, but Japan also.  Whereas Mexico is largely a playground for Americans and Canadians, Guatemala is on the world circuit, and especially popular with Italians, for whom the language is an easy transition.

    At least the violence for which this city will one day become famous has not erupted in full force yet, so the city is more or less safe to travel in, and if you go outside zone 1 you can find the middle and upper class neighborhoods that might even remind you of home.  Or you can go the opposite direction and find shanty-towns that should remind you of how privileged you are. (More …)

     
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