Monday, January 23, 2012

Elle's version of Lonely Planet

Since I am living with a local family, I have not taken advantage of the night life, or sampled the restaurants, to a large extent. But this Monday night I am foot loose and fancy free. Mi familia is en san Jose, so I am going out to dinner.

My first spot was to buy groceries, thinking I would make a sandwich and have a beer, on the beach, watching the tide go out. The main grocery store sounds like a Hawaiian goddess, the Pali ( or at least a main freeway on Oahu). The Pali is located right off the main road, and is easy to locate due to the big orange sign. I bought the staples: ham, bread, mayo, beer, and a few avocados.

I headed back to school and put my purchases in the fridge, and headed out to Gusto Beach, the trendy cocktail beach bar. This bar features mixed fruity drinks and non alcoholic juices, bean bags on the sandy beach, and games you can rent, such as volleyball, and futbol. I took in a mojito champagne cocktail and discussed plans for the weekend with mis amigos, and then headed out for some real food.

I took a couch at Mama GUI, the French, Belgian, Canadian, bistro on the same street as the Pali. This cafe has freshly made to order pizza, and fresh burgers that are not over cooked. The fries are crispy and salty, and the wine is perfect Italian table wine. And all of this for under 10,000 colon. My husband would approve of the burger - fresh, not frozen meat. And wifi. And I ran into 3 different friend I had just met over the weekend.

2 of my new friend are from Ontario and are buying a winter home here. The second I had spent last saturday with on a boat. Her name is Ella, like Ella FitzgerAld. She is from Victoria, Canada ( like the Kinks - Victoria!) She is about 70, and has a spirit for travel and adventure, but knows her limits. She and I shared a seat on the fishing boat on Saturday and I helped her take photos and spot dolphins. We swapped travel stories and she gave me food reviews (since I have not had a chance to eat out). I emailed her a bunch of fantastic photos of the little island that Marcus our fishing guide took us, a small island off the mainland, that you cannot see the private beach unless you are on the pacific side.

At dinner she told me stories of our trip that she could see that I could not, since she remained in the boat, and I went swimming in the protective lagoon created by the island. Apparently, our shipmates almost tipped the boat when they tried to get back in the boat. I was almost under the boat at the time pushing on butts, so I had no idea... We had 3 land lubbers with us who claimed they could swim and got in a little over their heads. But al is well that ends well. No one drowned, and no one was left on the island. (however Marcus volunteered to leave me there to swim more while he took the land lubbers home to their Resort. He and I are amigos now and plan on working together next weekend on organizing another tour...)

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