Hmm …. I've traveled thousands of miles, only to be struck down by a serious head cold. Before I left Brooklyn, two weeks ago, it seemed that everyone in the neighborhood was coming down with a particularly vicious bug that laid them up for days at a time. I remember running into rheumy, congested friends on the street and keeping my distance, going so far as to even holding my breath so as not to get their infection—and I thought it worked. Aside from some gastric distress, I've been very fit for this expedition. Now, however, I've got a throat as dry as a husk and a throbbing headache that just won't let me fall asleep. All I can do is wrap myself in a blanket and wait, wait, wait.
I was planning on heading out to Guatemala tomorrow, but if I'm in bed all day today I might delay my departure. There's a lovely little wine bar down the street, La Viña de Bacco, run by a friendly Italian fellow, Carlo. On my first visit there, on a late Wednesday afternoon, I drank five glasses of a passable red wine, along with free botanitas, small plates of bruschetta, ham, cheese, and olives. My bill came to a startling $9. It's a dangerous sort of place if, like me, you enjoy an early drink. It's so comfy, good, and cheap that it's tough to get out the door before you start swaying. And unlike a lot of touristy spots in town, the owner and management remembers and greets you, and makes you feel welcome, something that is missing in a lot of other joints in this town.
Oh well …. Anybody know the Spanish for "really strong cough suppressant"?