July 18, 2007 GMT
A couple of Georgian Gangsters
Here is a photo of a friend and my brother Badri. They look like a couple of gangsters. I definitely wouldn't mess with them.
BTW, if there are any single women interested in any of them, send info to me.
Posted by Gaby Berelovich at 05:28 PM
I haven't written in ages, but i'm now sitting in Georgia, ex-soviet republic, with my brothers and a friend (Duri). Basically, I've brought internet to their neighborhood, and they can't get enough of it.
Now they want to see how stuff is put on the web so why not, right?
Anyways, these guys are great, but I'll be heading back soon.
Don't have time for too much writting, all is well and I'll try to place a photo as well.
Posted by Gaby Berelovich at 05:14 PM
November 12, 2006 GMT
STILL!!! In Mazunte
Mexico, Mazunte, November 12, 2006.
G-Money (AKA Gabo, AKA, Gaby) Entry.
I'm back. I know most have you were hoping that Smokey would be writing by now, trust me I really was, but unfortunately we will all have to wait for a Smokey entry. Besides Smokey, I was also hoping some of the many friends who came to visit and promised would write an entry would do so. But that as well, will not take place, and that is because those people are lazy f%*ks. And to make them feel worse for promising and doing nothing, I will now name them.... Gabriel Riff, Bobby Rahal and Heather Westelman. These ďpeopleĒ should not be trusted. If they tell that they had a great time at your place and will definitely write a blog entry describing their stay, they are lying to you. Trust them NOT!.
Anyways, enough with the hate, Iím over thatÖ
So wow, wow, wow, I canít believe Iím starting this again.. And itīs been a crazy amount of time so donít expect a detailed analysis of the last 9 months, all high level, sorry. The one year anniversary, to us having left los Angeles, is coming up so I have to write something. Iím going back on my wordÖ.Everyone can change..
I read back the last entry and will go from thereÖ based on chaptersÖ
1. The LandÖ.
Is still there. And work on our house was started two weeks ago. So far so good. We definitely had a tough time starting, over 8 months of talking. But hopefully the wait made us smarter, which I think it has. The place will be a two level studio in the mountains overlooking the ocean. It will have a palapa roof. If you donít know what that means, then you suck! Kiddinī Itís a palm roof but you do suck!
2. The StoreÖ
This past August we opened up a clothing/accessories shop in Mazunte. Really cute little shop, nothing big, that fits in well in this town. The locals love the place, itís the first such store here, and during the quite month of August was opened almost full time. Its presently closed do to low season, but will open up soon. Weíll be trying out a new clothing section which we call Mode Derdy Styliní. The name comes from Smokeyís parents clothing store which catered to Strippers and HOís, but mostly strippersÖrespect. The clothing selection comes directly from the new store named Luluís. Check it out if youíre downtown.. And you donít have to be a Ho or StripperÖ. Who am I kidding! You gotta be that! Anyways, it was fun getting the place going.. rarelyÖ, most of the time it was a pain in the ass.
Here is a big lesson weíve learned since the last blogÖ.Getting things done in Mexico is tough, even tougher then back home. We went through lots of crap I havenít yet been able to deal with psychologically enough so as to write about it.
3. Why Mazunte?
Itís a nice place, really. You get the occasional crazy coked up local, but thatís rare and getting rarer the more familiar we become to them.
The beach is still nice and weíve been exploring other beaches in the region. There are TONS of them. But I still say ours is the best.
4. Me Mujer!
Meaning, my woman.
Thatís what they call Bebe (the Dutch girl).
What can I sayÖ. Its been a real trip since the last time I wrote. After I returned from San cristobal, she headed to Guatemala and I back to Mazunte. We kept in touch and I headed to her after a month, to Guatemala. She then decided to come back to Mazunte with me for a little bit before heading to Belize and Hunduras. After Hunduras she headed to Costa Rica and I headed there to see her before she left back to Holland. That is also where I met Bebeís mom. Nice lady, went well. After 3 months in Holland she came back to Gabo, thatís me. That was Sept 7th, sheís been here since thenÖ. things are very good. CRAZY! We even moved out on our own. I live with Bebe! I live with a woman!
Who would have thought that a motorcycle trip would end up like this after only a year. Iím in chock every other day. The chock is wearing off nowadays. My life is in Mexico now. But donít tell my mom that, she thinks Iíve gone crazy. And sheís blaming Smokey, so Iím kinda okay, poor Smokey. And it donít help him much when I agree with her. Poor smokey.
- Smokey bought a Safari. Itís a cool Volkswagen from the 70ís (1977). Also called the Thing sometimes. Its totally lime green. Really cool car. Reminds us of my old Chevrolet Chevette. No power steering and very unstable. We love it. The first time we both took a ride, it was SCARY. The thing is rattling and we feel like weíre barreling down the highway,Ö one of the funniest rides I ever had, sick!
- Smokey also took some trips. Twice to Bangkok. Most of the store merchandise is coming from Thailand.
- I took two trips back home (New Jersey/Montreal). Jewish Holidays! My mom has me by the balls I tell you.
- Some people visited. The undependable ones were mentioned at the start, besides themÖLisa Fitzhugh and Nancy Rahal. Bobby never left the beach, canít remember him without his swimmers, Nancy never left the house, but did get me hooked on Curb your Enthusiasm, Heather was a trooper, I mean TROOPER. We actually got caught up in a real life riot/revolution in Oaxaca city. We were there in June when the first clash that sparked all the crazy sh*t happening now, took place. I remember getting up at 6 am because of some noise and heading to the toilet, as soon as I left the room, I got a smack of tear gas. I was gased damnit. So was Heather, and that was just the startÖ Crazy stuff, helicopters, stun grenades, woman with machetes, kidnapped riot police right outside our guesthouse and throughout the whole thing we had front row seats on the roof of the guesthouse we stayed at. Scary stuff, really, we left town ASAP and now its even crazier. We took some photage which you might have seen on Heatherís photo site, if you use it and make money of it, we get a cut. Lisa was great, lost two pairs of shoes hiking with Leo, aka the Sherpa (as Bobby called him). And Gabriel was good times. First he got kidnapped coming into town by Kate, aka Crazy Kate, I think sheís okay though, that was FUNNY! I go down to her restaurant to blend up some chickpeas for Hummus and heís seating there, poor bastard. Besides that, he hightailed it out of town after just 3 days, the wuss got scared of Dengue. What a wuss. But we like him anyways, youíre always invited back, wussÖ Leo still calls you wuss or p*ssy, something like thatÖ..
So in total we love having friends over, it is really great having a little bit of home here with us. So as always the invitation is open. Although we will be losing the beach house for at least a month, during the holidays.
Okay I gotta run, to much to say and I want to go home. Before I go though the other big news is that weíre opening up a sushi restaurant. I am officially a sushi chef if anyone asked and its gonna happen starting December. All Japanese receiving this e-mail donít be afraid, Iím actually quite good, at least according to Bebe, Smokey, Eppy, Leo, and Sabine.
More on this some other time. And photos too.
Regards to all,
We miss you and love you (some of you).
Gaby, Aka Gabo, Aka g-money.
Oh and as for the bikes,Ö. Still doing good. Just kinda rusted all over.
Posted by Gaby Berelovich at 10:59 PM
February 04, 2006 GMT
Mazunte = Paradise
Been a long time so definitely a long entry warning, actually I think it will be in Chapters.
I also want to note that this will be my last entry until Smokey does one. Many of you have been wondering why Smokey hasnít written. Some of you have even accused me of killing the guy, which is why he hasnít written. I can assure you that Smokey is alive, although these days a little under the weather. SO until he writes an entry, there wonít be anymore coming from me.
Mazunte (pronounced Masunte) - January 10th and still here.
Chapter 1 Ė Our beach house and Mazunte
When we drove in off the highway and made it to the beach (donít forget topless beach). We were greeted by a local who directed us to the cabana closest to the beach (Rinconcito Beach). We took it.
The place is not too small, but is pretty disgusting. The walls are dirty, the beds suck (mine has springs almost sticking out), and the bathroom is NASTY, usually smells like sewage. Now you may ask yourself why we are still in the same place and its been almost a month. The answer is that our place is the coolest spot in town. We are so close to the water, that I havenít had to piss even once in the ocean. Now that is close. Three steps from our front door is the sand and weíve also setup a hammock from which I watch sunrises, although if Iím lazy, I can always just open my front door and watch the sunrise from bed.
Besides the proximity to the beach, our spot is also the action spot. Our spot always has people hanging out and drinking and chilliní. So the good thing is that our spot always has action and the bad thing is that our spot ALWAYS has action.
So far we pay a weekly rent of $80 usd for the place, although we are thinking of moving. The bathroom and mess in the room is starting to get to us, but weíll see.
By the way, according to people whoíve been coming to Mazunte for 15 years, our place was the first place on the Beach. Thatís kinda cool we think.
Time for some Mazunte history. This area used to be a slaughterhouse for turtles. Big turtles. About 20 years ago, they put the turtles on the endangered list and now killing them is very illegal, although it still happens. Supposedly, turtle meat is VERY good for you. Now since its VERY illegal to be caught with anything turtlely, let me say this. I met some guy, lets call him Gabriel and he ate some turtle meat one night, and he says he never felt soo good after eating meat. He really really felt good, according to him he could run a marathon at that moment. Thatís all Iím gonna say.
So when they stopped the slaughter, they started making this place into a tourist destination and these days you can come here and go on trips where you see dolphins, whales and turtles. You get to even jump in with the turtles and bug the hell out of them as you hold them by their shells, poor bastards. Theyíre really cute though. And the dolphins are everywhere, when we went out on the trip we saw at least 200 hundred of them. Well, thatís basically Mazunteís history.
The beach weíre on is probably the best beach around and definitely the coolest. There is also a fully nude beach just over a mountain. Mazunte is also considered to be the southernmost point of Mexico and if you see it on a map, youíll understand how it gets sunrises and sunsets. I can wake up in the morning, get on my hammock and watch a sunrise and then around 6pm head over the hill to a spot called Punta Cometa and see a sunset. Its actually the second time Iíve been in a place that has this and this place is better. Another attraction is a place called the Jacuzzi, because its kinda like a pool that gets big rushes of waves into it. I kinda got sucked out the first time I went and on the way back in got dozens of corral blisters, Iím still pulling them out, but you donít need to worry since being sucked out only happens if you allow it, so donít do it. The Jacuzzi is more like an aquarium. I snorkel in it and it is just like swimming in a big fish tank, really beautiful. There are other spots, dozens so Iíll stop here regarding nice spots.
Chapter 2 - Mazunte the People
Now Iíll try to do my best to describe some of the characters in this town, but it will be tough. Most of the people here are REAL characters. We think someone should make a sitcom based on this place. If someone does make a sitcom, we want royalties by the way.
Before I start, you should know that I will not be using the real names of these people, because first itīs not nice and secondly I think half of them are wanted by the law somewhere in their home countries.
First off the Local Foreigners. These are people that have been around for years or at least months.
First we have John the local wise man, who every once in a while throws out crazy sh$t like, ®The highest form of human love is the lowest form of real love!® I still donít quite get the meaning but its really deep, Iím sure. This guy is soooo f%cken cool, I canít do him justice. Heís very tall and reminds me of Gandalf from lord of the rings. Heís also the best massage guy in town, although I donít know that from first hand experience, but this guy always has some girls foot, shoulder, back or whatever in his hands. And this guy is in his sixties and heís hooking up with some real nice young (and I mean YOUNG) women. Not only is he the wise man in town heís also the ladies man and you would never know it just by looking at him, NEVER. Imagine Gandalf doing it with that elf princess, thatís this guy. Oh, and heís also the best drummer in town (bongo drums are huge in this town).
Okay, next we have Carlos. This guy is like out of a movie. Every time he opens his mouth, I feel like an idiot that I donít have the video camera rolling, unless I do have the video camera rolling and then its sweeeet. First he says heís Mexican, which canít be true, sh$t, I have a better chance of being Chinese then he does of being Mexican. Then he always talks about all the stuff heís done. Iíll name some of the more memorable career choices heís made; Heís been a Navy Seal, a CIA agent, a prison guard, a Pro Golf Player, a Shaman and the list goes on. Given the timeframes he puts to these events in his life there is no way it can all be true, unless miraculously Carlos was a CIA agent working with the Navy SEALS, while being undercover as a Pro Golf Player and volunteering as a Prison guard on weekends. Just CRAZY. And heís the guy managing the guesthouse we stay at. I can go on for hours about him, but Iíll move on.
Next is Wilma and her daughter Julie, these two are some of the more normal local foreigners. They are from the states like Carlos and John. They own a nice beach house right behind us and have been helping us out in our land purchase (see chapter whatever). Now the true character is Wilma, not only does she look like my mom but sheís also a little like my mom. A little bossy and gossipy (sorry Mom). But sheís still SUPER cool and chances are MUCH less bossy and gossipy then she used to be. She plays the drums (bongos) and sometimes even fills in with a band in the local hotspot. She also smokes weed. Now let me be clear, I am absolutely against smoking weed, kids and young adults should stay clear of weed. Now seeing what its done for Wilma, I am tempted to get all older people (over 55) a prescription for weed. That sh$t can do wonders, I see it first hand here. Instead of drugging up our elders with expensive chemicals, we should drug up our elders with cheap herbs. If I ever become president, I will put it into law guaranteed, I ainít kidding. I canít wait to get my mom here and introduce her to Wilma, I can just see my mom on the Bongo drums grooving with Wilma and John, weíd call the group ®Happy Old People® or something like that.
Then there is Leno, who is originally Mexican but was brought up in the states. Good guy, and hangs with us almost all the time. Weíve kinda taken him in as one of the group, and heís started working on our land as well. The best way to describe him is that heís like Forrest Gump. Once he even talked about chocolates and I thought I was going to loose it. Anyways, heís great.
There are others, like Leza the really smoking hot French waitress at the restaurant next to our place, and Lance, a guy from Kentucky who we think is either a pornstar, an undercover FBI agent or a serial killer, even though he says he's in construction, yeh right. But I wonít go into details because this is cutting into my beach time.
Now for the Local Locals. These guys are usually drunk or drunker. Its amazing what alcohol does to these Mexicans. They have zero control. They are actually a little scary when they are drunk, so we try to stay away on those big occasions when it seems like the whole town is drunk. Although a couple of days ago I was in the town close by heading back when I bumped into a couple of them and before I know it Iím drinking beers with them at a cantina, and when I say cantina I mean whorehouse. They just call it a cantina, but after I sat down and noticed the decorative naked photos, I kinda got the jist.
Anyways, the local locals are pretty cool, even though they get drunk and act really f%cken weird.
Overall, the people in Mazunte make this the sketchiest place Iíve ever liked. Its hard to explain but even though you really have to be careful here you still feel safe knowing that you know that everyone is sketch.
Chapter 3 Ė The Nightlife
Although this village only has like 100 people at any one time, there is still a substantial nightlife. The main joint (presently, but that changes) is Bar Luna Nueva. Great spot, bad service and some freaky shows. The last time I went they had a group/act where they mixed Arab belly dancing with Hindu (Indian) beats. Its was very cool, although the main guy was a guy dressed like a belly dancer and was belly dancing. Very weird, the other two were girls luckily so I didnít spend much time looking his way, he kinda weirded me out. On other nights they have a 12 piece band, although I believe it was the High School band, one kid was like 8 years old.
That's basically the main spot in Mazunte, but there are 2 other beaches close by with more people. The main one is Zipolite, which I went to last night to practice my salsa lessons (see more in chapter whatever).
Besides bars and clubs, people just hang on the beach some nights and turn that into a nightlife.
Chapter 4 Ė Really cool tourists.
Mazunte definitely gets the coolest tourists. One night there was a celebration of some sort and the town put on a great party. Really big too, for such a small town and they even had roller coaster type rides. But these rides they had, looked like they came from the throwaways of other parks, so pretty scary. Smokey and I met up with a couple of girls and one of them suggested we go on a ride. Before I know it, Iím on the scariest ride of my life. Looking at the ride is nothing to be scared of, since it was only one of those boat thingies that go up and down and never really all around, so I thought we were not in for anything special. Boy was I wrong. Not only was the ride a full 10 minutes (felt like 30 minutes), and the lights kept on going off which made us think the ride would never stop or worse the whole thing would bust, but the clincher was when the attendant (some kid, damn he could have been anyone of the street) decided to leave for a full minute with us still yelling our brains off. That was hilarious, with people passing by, seeing us going crazy and with no one watching the lever. Unbelievable really what is allowed here. That was the best ride of my life by far, I was actually scared at one point.
Anyways, the whole thing was cool and that was thanks to this Dutch girl. By the way Dutch people have the weirdest sense of humour, which I realize I really like. One time at dinner we were listening to Kit (really cool girl from Montreal, which some of you will get to meet) talk about drinking piss, and Bebe (my name for the Dutch girl) immediately asked ®Why, were you thirsty?®® I almost fell off my chair, but others didnít find it as funny.
Chapter 5 Ė Going to San Cristobal
I actually took a few days away from mazunte last week. I headed to San Cristobal de Las casas with the Dutch girl. We had a great time. The town itself is very interesting with really nice places to see and hang at. We spent our nights at the coolest club in Mexico (in our opinion), called El Circo. They had the best house band (a cross between the Masters Of the Universe, Bob Marley and some Reaggaeton) and some crazy DJing in the back room. The DJ actually played salsa, rap, techno, swing, rock and raeggaton all in the same set. Wow.
Besides clubbing, another memorable event was when we went horse back riding. Our guide was drunk (kept stopping to piss every 5 minutes) when we started so we decided to get him even more drunk. So we got him and us some beers and a half litre of some really good local stuff called Posh (best moonshine Iíve ever had). After that the trip was fantastic. We got to go back through the forest instead of the highway which we used on the way there and secondly it was just fun. He brought his son (10 year old) and a friend along on a separate horse, which was a good thing since we kinda left our guide behind, he could barely stay on his horse much less ride along with us. Iím not too bad riding, and Bebe used to compete so we were in no real danger.
The only problem with San Cristobal is the weather. It was cold, like 5 degrees in the evenings, that was difficult. I can just see the Montreal people hitting something right about now. But really that was the coldest Iíve had it in almost a year and it even rained somewhat one day, that was weird. Initially I didnít know what it was and then I realized I was getting wet and then I put 1 and 1 together and got ®Sh$t its raining!®
Chapter 6 - Dead man in Mazunte
When I got back to Mazunte, we had a real life event take place. The waves on the beaches here are quite dangerous, even for good swimmers.
One day there was a Mexican tour that came in and went to the most dangerous part of the beach. That was dumb and add to that they were drinking and it has to go down as super dumb. Anyways, at some point we hear yelling and head to the beach to help out someone who is drowning. Smokey and I helped get the guy out of the water and also into a waiting van. By the way, Iíve never seen a man so close to death, it was scarier then in the movies. But on the beach we had some help from other tourists, one was a paramedic, the man had a pulse and was breathing but was in really bad shape. We got him to the waiting van but didnít realize that there wasnít anyone in the van who knew first aid, it all kinda happened really fast. So the man never made it to the hospital alive. Poor guy, that is really a bad way to go, drowning in front of your whole family is definitely sad. I was actually more upset then sad because I donít think he should have died, if only we realized that the van only had family members we would have gone along, but we didnít so its over. That was the closest I ever came to a dead man. Hopefully, it wonít get any closer.
Amazingly after that whole commotion Mazunte was back to its old self within an hour. Unbelievable place, Mazunte is. So thatís the sad part of this entry and I hope everyone is smart enough not to drink and swim in dangerous spots, because you can die, weíve seen it.
Chapter 7 Ė Land Purchase
While I was away in San Cristobal, Smokey was busy looking over some land thatís for sale. Also while I was away Smokey miraculously got himself a Mexican ®relative®. Something like his cousinīs boyfriend in Montreal. SO that gave us a real good in to buying land here, since no foreigners can own land that is 50 kilometres from the coast or 100 kms from the borders. By the time I got back the deal was almost done.
Everything was actually finalized yesterday when I went with the land seller to the bank to confirm the money transfer. That even was kinda funny. After we confirmed the transfer, the Mexican guy went to the teller and called me over. He gave me 50 cents and said ®go get a black bag® in Mexican, so I went and got him a black Bugs Bunny bag, which I found funny, but I donít think he thought the same because instead of using the bag he placed the cash into his underwear. Anyways, I like Bugs Bunny and I ainít ashamed.
So after he got his cash we got the deed. Its done. The land is really sweet. Itís a good 15 minute walk from the beach (which is a negative, but not too bad), but has a serious view of the ocean and beaches. The land has a sunrise view and a sunset view and I mean Ocean sunrise and sunset views, not some pathetic over the mountain view, those donít really count. And its quite big, we can build a house and several cabanas with plenty of space.
Today I started clearing the land, and its sad how weak I am, after only 30 minutes of manual labour I almost started hyperventilating, luckily Leno was around to help out.
So God willing within a couple of years the place will be set up well.
What else, there was soo much. Oh yeah, Smokey might have Dengue fever. Dengue has been going around recently. Julie, Wilmaís daughter had it a couple of weeks ago, and Carlos says he had it a few days back. But no need to worry, heís getting better and Iím watching over him.
Oh and my salsa lessons. I just had 3 of them so far and its good. The guy teaching me was supposedly a mexican dance champion at some point so be certain I'm learning from the best.
Okay, this entry can be much longer but Iím tired and I still need to go into town (30 minutes drive) so sorry, thatís it for me. And hopefully Smokey can place an entry soon otherwise this could be it.
Regards and asta luego hopefully in Mazunte,
Posted by Gaby Berelovich at 10:21 PM
January 29, 2006 GMT
This entry is only to notify everyone that we are fine. Actually very fine. We're still in Mazunte and this place is out of this world. I need a long ass entry to give it justice, so that will have to wait. Its SUnday damn it and we're chillin, so stop buggin.
But I'd like to get some Bike notes out of the way.
SMokey's Bike: Since Puerto Escondido have only been going into town (Pochutla, 15 kms from Mazunte) once in a while. A couple of days ago his front brake lever was feeling spongy and this morning we performed our first front brake bleeding. It worked, the brakes are fine and we're pretty proud of ourselves, although lets be honest, bleeding the brakes is still on the easy part of the bike repair scale.
G-Money's Bike: Nothing really to report, except that I changed the oil again. WHy not right?.
Both bikes seem to be doing well, although the worry now is that all the salt in the air is gonna cause a problem sooner or later. So we've been bathing the bikes in WD40 (except for the brakes, I know, I learnt that awful lesson before).
Well, that's it for now.
Hopefully, I can get the full entry out soon. I really want to get the stuff down before I forget all the crazy stuff here. Its a total circus, really.
Ciao, asta luego, orale, vatos locos forever.
Posted by Gaby Berelovich at 10:31 PM
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