SURFERS AND SUNBURN-SUFFERERS
29.09.2008 - 26.10.2008
Alex had been taking sun yesterday and his whole face, shoulders and back are scorched. I had told him to be careful about sunbathing but what can you do. He told me about a small restaurant shack, where there are rock crops and where the surfers are. In front of the shack the proprietor has hung two hammocks where I could lay down, read or write while he is gone further up where the young people are sunbathing on another stretch of the beach of white sand.
So we walked up the whole stretch of the beach to this restaurant at Playa Carizalillo, which is called Sabor a Mar (Taste of Sea) and found it a nice place indeed. In front are big rock crops and the sea is in constant rage, heavy waves breaking over the rocks with a thundering sound. The spot is ideal for surfing but not for bathing. I ventured in the water twice but the waves threatened to drag me inside. I said no thanks, came out of the water and had a cold dark beer. After that I ordered a Gin & Tonic but the owner, Señor Mundo, could not find the gin bottle. So I had a Cuba Libre and since I was feeling so relaxed, I went behind the counter and made myself one more, and only then, searching the shelf where were stacked all the bottles, did I notice the lonesome bottle of Tanquery Dry Gin, nearly empty. But I was content and at peace. Like Hemingway.
When Alex came back, his face and arms black, shoulders burnt, he could not lie down in the hammock and I had to put after sun cream on his body to protect it from further burns. He drank two large glasses of fresh Orange juice and I ordered a Gin & Tonic. Drinks cost 35 pesos each, beer 20 pesos and fruit juice 27 pesos.
We went back to the hotel and rested for some time, then took a shower and decided to again go the Municipal market and explore the place. The market was not full, but the stalls were full of different kinds of fruit & vegetables, spices, adobos and cheese. And fresh fish. We decided on one restaurant which had clean table covers, ordered cold beers and asked to see what fish they had. The owner, l stout woman, brought a tray on which were giant (king) prawns which like in Spain, are also called Camarones here and the fish was Pargo.
Camarones al ajillo or al pil-pil are delicious. In a clay or ceramic skillet, heat olive oil, put chopped garlic and after a minute add peeled prawns, and fry for five minutes. Add white wine and after a few minutes simmering the prawns are ready. sprinkle whole salt and red chili, garnish with lime/lemon juice, fresh coriander leaves and Viola! Camarones al ajillo. Great with dry white wine.
We did not want to eat fried fish so I explained how we preferred our fish and camarones. The owner called another woman, who cut the fish in slices, broke the head in two halves, took out the gills and grilled the fish on a hot plate. Alex wanted his camarones al ajillo, and since there was no white wine to add, I told the lady to pour in half cup of beer. They were delicious and succulent. He liked the prawns so much that he had three plates and said he was still hungry. We enjoyed the food so much that we promised to return the next day.
In the evening we watched the US presidential debate on CNN. What a disappointing and uninspiring sparring between two lacklustre candidates.
Alex has been feeling uneasy, too much sun and travelling with me, he misses the young crowd.