Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Red Rum Punch

These juicy green leaves with bright red veins came from a bush, or a tree, that was all over the beaches of Belize. We stayed in a beach shack in Placencia.
“It’s gonna DUMP!”

I must have yelled that a dozen times our first day in Belize. The rain would fall hard at times, but not for long. There was always blue sky right behind the dark clouds that were born over the Caribbean Sea with its Bermuda Triangle and peculiar weather conditions that would make the rain fall sideways. Little flying water coffins.

“You’re going to dump,” Tania said.

It’s true. I am going to dump. No matter what. Even if I died right after she said that, I’d still dump. I’ve been give to understand that corpses void their bowels.

“You don’t tell me when I’m going to dump!” I yelled back at her. Perhaps too aggressively.

We were on vacation, after all, and there was no reason to be starting a fight. We had even taken the precaution of sleeping on our usually assigned sides of the bed: I am on the right, Tania is on the left. That is from the vantage point of a murderer standing at the foot of the bed with a knife in his hand, perhaps a large chef’s knife, and looking at us while adjusting his pantyhose, or ski mask, or whatever costume he had chosen to wear for the event of our deaths. Maybe he wore nothing and wished for us to see his crazy face before we die so we’d always “remember” him, that is of course if memory crosses the divide between this world and the next. I’m of the opinion it doesn’t. I said he was crazy, right? In which case, if he were sans mask, then he would probably be picking his nose as he surveyed us sleeping. I would flick a booger on my victims right before I set upon them. It’s completely unnecessary, but it’s a little added obnoxious touch to an already unpleasant event. I mean, if you’re going to be a jerk. I wouldn’t aim, I’d just flick it like a cigarette in that “Alright let’s do this!” manner that is so popular among action movie stars. And then I’d stab the fuck out of them. Out of us. I’m on the right, she’s on the left, if you’re a murderer at the foot of our bed.

This was the view from the front porch of our beach shack. See that black dot on the beach by the water to the right? It's a bag of trash. It was there our entire stay. We wrote a children's story about it called, "The Li'l Bag of Beach Trash." Which you will enjoy soon.

“You’re on my side,” Tania said as she emerged from the bathroom in our tiny little beach shack and found me on the left side of the bed. Again, from the murderer’s perspective. “You wanna fight again?” she asked. The Amelie soundtrack was coming out of her crappy, tinny iPod speakers.

“Where was that, that we fought because we slept on the wrong side of the bed?” I asked. The song that she walked down the aisle to, “La Valse D’Amelie,” was playing.

“I don’t remember,” she said, thinking about it. “London?”

“No,” I said. We definitely fought in London. That was a particularly bad fight. But I remember sleeping on my side, the right side, right as in opposite of left from the perspective of a murderer at the foot of our bed, but also right as in the correct side of the bed. Because I remember staring at the window all night long, which was on my side of the room, our horrible, tiny, harlequin themed room. There’s nothing like a clown-themed room to exaggerate and mock a domestic spat.

“Maybe Vegas?” she wondered.

“Maybe,” I agreed. “For some reason Vegas was the first place I thought of, too.” She didn’t think Vegas first, but I said “too” all the same. And Vegas seems like a place where you’re supposed to fight with women.

“I just remember that we were fighting,” she said, “and in hindsight, when it was all over, we decided it was because we were sleeping on the wrong sides of the bed.”

“Probably,” I said. Upon inspection, I’ve found that every one of our fights is over nothing and may as well have been caused by sleeping on the wrong side of the bed. It’s as good an explanation as any. “Oh wow! Look at the moon!” I said. It was still light out, but I could see the moon rising over the ocean.

When it would "dump," I'd take pictures of beach trash and whatnot in the room. This is a little piece of seaweed going up Bittman's nose.

“Oh,” she said, stepping out onto our porch, “it’s a full moon.”

Tania got her camera out of her purse and took a picture of the moon in the daylight sky. It was one of those digital pictures you feel the need to take, but will never do anything with. It’s a nice sentiment, but ultimately it’s just a stupid moon picture.

“Are you using the Caribbean Ocean Moon Rise setting?” I asked.

Tania’s camera has all these automatic settings that are oddly specific such as, “Pets,” “Food,” “Babies,” “Fireworks,” “Night Portraits,” “Starry Night Portraits,” “Self Portraits,” “Starry Night Self Portraits of Baby Food,” etc.. I prefer to keep it on the one that uses a martini glass as an icon, “Party,” it says. I hope that every picture I take in that mode will look like I’m at a party. “WOOOO! PARTY CAM!”

“Duh,” Tania said. “What? You think I’d make the mistake of using the Pacific Ocean Moon Rise setting?”

I poured two more rum drinks. Tania lay down on the bed and picked up her Patti Smith book. The Cocteau Twins babbled out of the tinny iPod speakers. Tania thinks the singer sounds like Nell. Jodie Foster Appalachian feral wild child jibber jabber. The surf splashed upon our beach. The faint yellow moon went behind the clouds.

Our first bartender preferred this rum because it was mellower, not so sweet and vanilla-y.

“Jesus,” she said as she took a sip of her rum punch.

“That’s how they did it at the bar,” I said. I watched. I made mental notes. They filled the glass with ice, then some rum, then a splash of punch. Tania found my interpretation a little strong.

“You like that Patti Smith book?” I asked.

Tania said Patti Smith is a good writer. Tania never says that. Even about good writers.

“I don’t know,” she said. “Why don’t you ask the murderer at the end of the bed. He’s been reading over my shoulder all night.”

I wondered if the camera had a setting for “Murder.”

Rum punch at Coppola's. Coppola has a resort in Placencia. We walked about three miles along the beach to get to the bar on the ocean and have a couple drinks and watch rich people have really weird forced romantic moments.

Found this sick Neil Blender ramp on the walk to Coppola's. Tania is watching wild chickens in the trees.

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