Monday, 5 October 2009

El Inti De Oro: a place worth getting Lost over.

I thought since My Blog has mostly been about Madrid and up until a few months ago, I was reviewing musicals, concerts and other places I had been to. why not a restaurant. and Since I have made no secret at all that there are certain things I love and certain things I don´t like.

We went when Mia back in April when she came over for a week, for the IL DIVO concert in Madrid.I arrived at her hotel room at midday and we spent the best part of early afternoon looking for a restaurant that some of my friends suggested we go and eat before going to the IL DIVO concert. It was called “RIBS”. Which gave you an idea of what was on the menu. Meat and lots of it. We didn't feel that this place had anything appetizing and since we had a meet and greet, there was no way we were going to this, full, bloated with meat breath.

After that we got a bit lost looking for “Touch Me” a shop where they sell gothic clothes, for example, Corsets, capes and lots of weird and spooking things you might see in a Nacho Cano musical.

We did find a couple of places which were the subjects of hauntings and murders, and there was some pretty interesting clothes shops that I hadn't seen before. This was Mia's first trip to Chueca and of course I couldn't resist showing her my favorite bench on Vasquez de Mella Square. Looking back on it, she wondered how close I must have been to meet everyone at the closing ceremony of Gay Pride in Madrid in 2008.

Travelling all the way down to Anton Martin, we decided to see if we could find the “Peruvian” Place she wanted us to visit, ever since she came out to Support me in March 2008. She couldn't remember the name of the place, only that it was next to a vegetarian restaurant and it was in a corner street after passing the Westin Palace Hotel. The fact that it had been a few years since she had been there with her partner Ulf and their Spanish friends meant that we didn't have much to go on. We spent the best part of an hour looking for it and I suggested that we look for clues for example it might have some tapastry or it probably had a girl's name like a lot of the Peruvian places I'd been to.

After making a wrong turn yet again, I suggested to Mia that we look on the next street. And said if it's not there we'll go else where. Suddenly Mia remembered that the restaurant may have been located where we would have originally turned. I had a feeling that It was around that area. She suddenly remembered that her friend was telling her about the attempted uprising in Congresso de Diputados in the early 80's. It was a bit of a coincidence that I was reading about this place the night before only to find out it was a clue.

After a few steps, from the distance I could see something which looked like a sign with a gold disk. It rang a bell but as soon as I read “Peruano” and Mia confirmed that this was the place. We went straight in.

My God was the place impressive. It everything in there was Peruvian all over. Even the waitresses were dressed in traditional costumes. There were maps, paintings tapastry and a table with every food product you'd find in Peru. We were quite hungry but it took us ages to figure out what we wanted to eat. Since the vegetarian stuffed yucca wasn't on this menu, we decided to try something else. I hadn't tried it yet even since going out with David and he's suppose to be an expert at making this dish. (he is as well, he even taught me.) The ever impressive Ceviche.

Ceviche or “Cebiche” is a dish which is prepared with either fish or seafood. It's marinaded in lime juice for a few minutes. I didn't think there was anything more delicous than Sushi until I tried this. I guess it's Peruvian “Sushi” because the fish is raw. Still that didn't stop us from ordering one between us as a starter. That and a “Pisco Sour” each.

I have to say that was heavenly, but I will argue that David makes a delicious version with Octopus. yum

I may have explained that this, (Pisco Sour that is,) is a typically Peruvian cocktail made with a drink called “Pisco” and from what I understand contains syrup, lemon juice, egg white and sugar. This tasted better than the other version we had in September. It was sweet,it gave you a warm feeling on the inside and even though you could taste the strength of the alcohol, you could feel it. That was what a cocktail was suppose to taste like.

We ordered a “Picante Camarones” each. Which was a sea food dish with a rich creamy sauce. There were about 6 Tiger Prawns or Crayfish, I'm not sure what, the plate was nicely decorated but not to the point where you thought “wait are you suppose to eat it or put it on display?” We thought the music was very relaxing, typical folk music (I'll get back to what it's called.)

I thought the signs on the toilets were a scream. They were typical Peruvian expressions used to describe the opposite sex, like “Guys and Dolls” “Dudes and Chicks” this was “Cholitos and Cholitas” I though it was hysterical. I did explain to Mia afterwards and she told me the stories Ulf told her of his
childhood in Lima.

Time for another “Pisco Sour”. We realised that the glass was a lot bigger than the one that we each drank from in “Fogon de Claudia”.

Needless to say that the second glass was making us tipsy. Very tipsy.

No meal would have been complete without a dessert so we tried something that we didn't know what it was. “Suspiro Limena” or “Limean Sigh” I guess it means it was discovered in Lima. And what a discovery. It was a caramel based dessert. Forget “Dulce de Leche” this was delicious! That and the coffee liquer shot with cinnammon we had each compliments of the house.

It was their way of saying “We know you think this place costs an organ to eat here but we want you to tell everyone the food is great and we treated you really good so you can come back again and again!”

Mia Obviously came back and I did too.

there is a Menu of the day where if you have no Idea what to have as a starter, they bring you a dish with every Starter you can think of, with Papa rellena, Ceviche, Anticuchu, yucca... yum.

Anyway if you happen to be in Madrid and want to try something Peruvian with a 5 star feel. this is the place.

for more details. here´s the website.

Monday, 28 September 2009

Saying Fairwell to a Good friend and an Era.

I have been contemplating on how to write this blog over the last month and words seemed to fail me. I always knew this day would come but it still doesn´t ease the pain. I am going to talk about my late Friend Norma and what kind of person she was.

Norma passed away last August in her sleep in hospital which at least is a comfort knowing that she wasn´t in any pain. She did how ever have a number of ailments but that never got her down, she just continued to live her life.

When I first met her in October 2005, it was outside London Studios with my mother and a whole load of other women waiting who all had one goal. To meet IL DIVO. There was a Meet and Greet organized by the management of this group because they knew that there were going to be a lot of fans there due to the TV show the group were appearing on. What we didn´t know was that they were going to be filming the Meet and Greet for their first DVD “Encore”.

This camera guy was there asking lots of questions on why we were there and which Divo we preferred. There was me being quizzed on which one I liked best and I of course said Carlos for the voice. Norma was next to us and we´d just met. When the camera guy asked what she would like to see next from IL DIVO, her answer was “I´d like to see Carlos with nothing but a white Apron!" I thought it was hysterical. She then introduced herself and told us this was the probably one of the craziest things she´d done in years since her late husband passed away.

We got on great. We were talking about the up and coming world tour which would start in the UK in April 2006 and she was planning to come to the Wembley concerts. She was telling us stories of all the places she´s visited in the last few years with and without her husband. She was married to a Maltese called Charlie who looked a lot like my dad, and well after many years with this guy she spoke Maltese. She had a black sister called Hilda whom she explained was her adopted sister, because 4 years previously Hilda´s mother had decided to adopt Norma during her stay in Zimbabwe.

Norma was starting to rub off on my mother and I at this rate. She told us that she went to bed with a different man every night, but she was actually referring to was her mp3 player, she then pointed out was now that there were four men she went to bed with every night. I filled her in on all the stuff I knew about IL DIVO by then, especially on Carlos to which she answered “God Tina you know a hell of a lot on Carlos, I hope you don´t call out his name when you´re in bed with your boyfriend. We were crying with laughter.

Since then we´d call each other every week to see how we were and sometimes I´d go around for Dinner. She made a mean roast and even though she was diabetic, she always had some sweets for after for me. When I told her that for my birthday, I was going to Dublin to see IL DIVO, she said she was also going, even though I was in the 3rd row and she was sitting somewhere high above with the “Gods”. We were going to spend it together. When a week before the concert I managed to find a seat in the 3rd row and asked if she was interested, we sold the ticket she already had and bought this seat and it was the best birthday present ever. Sitting in the 3rd row of a concert listening to my favourite group with my “second” mummy and her “flashing” lips.

We did all kinds of things together. By chance we discovered this South American Restaurant, which served the biggest Argentine steak, I had ever seen for a reasonable price. We travelled to Berkshire for the annual UK IL DIVO fan convention, and that was hysterical enough. But she was great company and a brilliant room mate too. She told me that I´d better not snore or gab her during the night. She was always full of jokes.

The funniest moments with Norma was whenever we had a chance to see IL DIVO up close and personal.

2 days before we due to fly to Dublin for my birthday, we were there waiting at London Studios, very early in the morning, freezing our butts, as well as our toes, and we did meet 2 of the four Divos. (two of them were ill) and lucky for us. Our dear Carlitos was there. Norma told him we were going to Dublin and he and the others should look out for us because we´d be “flashing” Carlos´ face was a picture. She finally got her photo with him and we got one with the three of us together.

Another moment took place when the guys were promoting their third Album “Siempre” and Pete Their manager at the time, had decided to let four fans in at a time and Norma was in front and went in the building to meet them. She asked Sebastien and Carlos if they could sign some photographs of her with them and they agreed. Then they looked closer at the photos and saw that they were puppet versions of them.

It won´t be the same without Norma. There were a lot of people who kept asking what is a woman in her late sixties doing hanging around with a someone who was in her 20´s. These were comments from people who didn´t know Norma at all. Norma may have been 68, but she sure didn´t act like it. She act like she was 21 and nothing was Taboo with her. She had lived and experienced it all and wasn´t shy about telling you.

When I last saw her, she didn´t look too well. She´d lost a lot of weight and she´d just got some more bad news about her health. But she was optimistic about the next event that was going to take place in her life which left my mother and I shocked.

She asked me a ton of questions about David and when she heard my mum say she was going to kick his butt if he ever hurt me, Norma replied that she would too. Like I said she was a second mother to me. I could tell her all kinds of stuff and nothing could faze her.

The last place we went to together was at the Colombian place. I fancied Ceviche was a starter and I´d told her how good it was, but it wasn´t the version that I usually ate in Madrid and neither her or my mother liked this version. We had Chicarron as a main and some cheese cake thing and caramel dessert for afters. She took a while to get home. She had to take her time with everything but that didn´t matter because we caught up on a lot of things.

She will be missed greatly by a lot of people world wide. When she connected to the IL DIVO forum in 2006, she made a lot of friends. Some we would meet at concerts.

Norma was a fine example of not giving up when things really got bad. I couldn´t believe the amount of medication she was on. She looked fine to me, but like I said, that never brought her down, it only made her stronger. She was determined to live her life to the fullest and the lesson here is that we should all do the same.

Her departure has left a void in my heart as well as my life. But she always told me that she was prepared for this, she had her will made long ago which included how she wanted her funeral to be even the music. She said she wanted a lone piper playing “Amazing Grace”. She was truly amazing person.

Goodbye Mummy Norma. I will miss you lots.

Friday, 19 June 2009

What a Difference A Year Makes part 1

i bought myself a Journal earlier this week. I like to make a note of things that happen in my life so I can eventually write about it.

I bought a Journal last year when I Was in Dublin because deep down I knew that when I got back, the shit was truly going to hit the fan. And I wasn´t wrong.

And boy did I write,

Of course the night before I moved into my new flat in Goya I was warned not to mention the conversation that was between myself, my ex friend and flat mate and her mother. well I didn´t say a word because they did all the talking. I didn´t want to give them the satisfaction. so I kept a mental score.

When I finally moved into my new flat, that was when things started to change. No more being badgered into going to a bar with only 4 people in it. no more being pimped to guys, no more having to listen to constant moaning about the partner of a Certain Swiss opera Singer.

Of course having spent over 500 euros on the deposit of my room and the rent, I was left with very little to spend for the month. that still didn´t stop me from buying the basics like food, tooth paste and washing powder. I Still got to go for the occasinal drink. And yes there was Gay Pride, that party was free.

Now moving on, My laptop sort of took over my journal and now I am about to be left without a laptop because my "Brother in Law" Suko is going to upgrade it for me. so I have to write the old fashioned way.

And believe me, by the time I get my lap top back, the journal will be pretty full because not only will it be about my life so far but they´ll be some feed back on the other books I am writing.

Another one has now appeared. "La Gran Locura" exactly what it says on the tin. it´s about friendship, work, love and a trip out side of Europe.

My friend Vivi is about to take a trip out of Europe herself. she´s off to Canada and then the US. first to see her favourite French Canadian Comedian who is quite cute, then she´s off to See Il Divo. lucky her.

I´m lucky that I am making a trip at all this year. To London. It´s about time too. I will be going alone because for David to get a visa appointment, he has to wait until 2011.

Still we can always do Sweden. Mia´s already offered her place for me and David.

more next time.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

A Time for Reflection.

I´ve been away from here for the last two months.

my last blog was about being invited to an Evangelist chruch by the last person who I´d expect to invite me. I´d gone through changes. An end of an era had occured and another one recently began.

I don´t even know where to begin, but I´m at a place in my life at the moment that I´m happy.

Although it´s been hard.

My relationship with a certain person has started all over again. i like it how it is now because it´s more relaxed. everyone thinks we´ve gotten back together but I always like to point out that "We´ve just begun!" I don´t think they understand and I don´t expect them to.

The things it has taken for me to calm down while´I´m at work. certain people still try to make life difficult for me and sometimes I see or hear things that make me feel like turning into "Wolverine". but I´ve now taken a calm approach to things.

A lot has happened and when I can I will explain them a bit at a time. because there is a lot to write about.

but there has been one thing that I will write about briefly.

I am planning a trip. it´s a crazy one. so crazy that I am writing a fiction about it.

I´ll keep you posted



Friday, 6 March 2009

When the law goes a bit mad.

Thought I´d give this case a mention because this guy involved needs to know that we´re on his side.

I found out about the case of David Goldman through a fellow blogger and having read everything that this guy has been through in the last few years it made me think of my my male friends and co workers.

David Goldman´s son Sean was kidnapped by his mother Bruna Ribiero who has since passed on and was taken to Brazil. More information is on this following website.

personally if the ex partners of my friends suddenly turned around and said "Sorry you can´t see your son,daughter or kids" as some have got more than one, they would fight tooth and nail to say "like hell I won´t.

Sadly David has been fighting the Brazilian Courts for years. let´s hope that justice prevails and the good guy wins.

I know there are cases of dead beat dads but recently I´ve met a few who despite the situation or reason that ended the relationship with the mother of their child are still there for their kids, even if it is a phone call once a week.

David, we´re with you on this one mate!!

Friday, 6 February 2009

On going Support to Two Special People.

Yesterday I got a text message from Mia that made me say "huh?"

With the internet working when it feels like it in my new flat and having gone back to work after a nice little holiday that has done me the world of good, I didn´t know what she was talking about.

Today having bougnt a copy of Hola Magazine and been on the internet, reading the official post. It´s true, two of my favourite artists have now joined the statistics of many couples who spend who knows how much time apart.

Carlos Marin and Geraldine Larossa aka Innocence are splitting.

It´s sad to hear but I wish them both the best for the future.

my opinion of both of them has not changed.

I will still support both of them when I can.

but still my heart is a little sore.



Monday, 2 February 2009

Madrid in a blanket of snow and Chaos!

WARNING: this contains some pretty strong swear words!!

I had lived in Madrid for 10 months and thought that by then I got use to the weather changes. Especially when I had to fork out more money for the high Utility bill which I know part of it was not my fault and had to wear god knows how many layers of clothing as well as 4 blankets in bed.

But not having seen January in Madrid, I was not prepared for what happened one weekend. It was as if I was dreaming.

I had read in fictional novels set at the beginning or General Franco's era in the 40's of what the winters in Madrid were like. There was snow and not dandruff flaky snow but real snow. My heart ached. I wanted to see Madrid like that but since global warming has fucked that up big time, I realised that I was not going to see that any time soon.

I was in for a shock.

One morning when, I let my cat out on to the balcony to use her litter box, I was flabbergasted. The cat for a start, was telling me in her “kitty” language “it's too cold even for me out here!” and I noticed the clothes on the washing line, my clothes had snow! I went back to my nice warm room which surprised me because it meant the heater had been switched on and looked out of my window and everything was covered in snow.

It continued to snow all day long and I had to go out to the shops to get the groceries I didn't get the day before and it was a winter wonderland. My favourite city covered by snow! It didn't stop me from slipping a few times with my damn trainers I had been wearing since I got to Madrid and I had to wear my Peruvian sweater over another sweater as well as my coat, scarf made out of more than one Afghan fox and gloves.

Luckily the Metro wasn't buggered, because I had to go to work that day and they were not taking “It snowed” as an excuse. All flights were cancelled and anyone who had the day off that weekend, were all called in to work.

The Queue from all the passengers who had their flights cancelled due to bad weather, didn't end and the worst part was that we had six tills opened and every damned customer was queuing up at my till. Even when Giovi who was one of the managers in charge politely asked them to form 5 other queues, they wouldn't.

There was me thinking the snow was fantastic, and imagined me on my day off playing in the snow. I hadn't seen so much snow since I was in my early 20's when It took me 3 hours to get home from College one night that finally after 2 hours of being on the bus, I walked home.

Guess I didn't think of how the change in the weather would affect everyone at work. Most of us ended up doing an 11 hour shift that Friday night, and we were all on 10 minute breaks. I wasn't feeling that good that day because of my “monthly visitor” and I as irritable as the stranded passengers. Most of them were at the receiving end of my irritability, the ones that deserved it because they were annoying the hell out of me. I know they were annoyed with their flights being cancelled but it's hardly the airport's fault.

We get enough crap from the airheads who work for certain flight companies who think just because they work for a big airline, they think they're better. It must have annoyed them rotten seeing that there was no way in hell they were going to get served that evening or the next day.

The day after I took advantage of taking photos of where I previously lived at the time. The park was still covered in snow, the fountain had frozen over and I managed a sneaky photo of a cat looking a bit puzzled at the white stuff on the ground.

Luckily there weren't as many arse holes in the queue later but poor Flora, the girl who had the thing for Dave was a bit upset because she had been working since 9.30 without taking a break. I did scare her a little by telling her that when she does go for a break, expect it to be short because of the customers. She was lucky.

I was a particular good mood because that same day, I got the answer I had been waiting for. That I got the room I saw earlier in the week, when Mariana screwed me over with her so called bank appointment and I ended up with a fine from the underground which put me in a fowl mood for two days. I thought thank God for that. A bit of good news at least.

By the time I got to Sunday afternoon for my afternoon shift, I was exhausted. I don't think I had ever had that much work since joining there, even during the summer. My energy was drained big time, I guess I was picking up on the energies of the upset and panicky passengers. There were a lot more Police and civil guards on patrol that weekend too. Well T4 does have a police station on the second floor. All I wanted to do was go to sleep and go home straight after. I was starting to imagine what the two weeks without Dave was going to be like when he was going to visit Peru. I guessed Hell. But I also thought of Canillejas and not having to take an hour to get to work. The idea of getting on the bus with Jessica to see the shocked look on her face made me laugh a bit.

I guessed she would be one of the ones who would annoy the shit out of me the most whilst Dave was away.

Giovi, bless him, every time we're working together on the same shift, tells everyone who likes to poke their nose in my business tells them to mind their own and acts like he's working my corner in a boxing match when ever it gets busy. Whenever I'm in one of my moods and I say “I feel like killing!” he often answers “Go ahead, kill, I'll gladly help!” Then he gets a bit disappointed when it's not the person he thinks I want to kill. It's usually some jerk customer who thinks they can out smart me!

By Monday, some of the snow cleared. I still had to go to work but first of all I had some letters to post. The shocks didn't end there I can tell you. There was me thinking of a concert in Madrid that I would be going to with my best friend Mia and the fact that I would be on a different level to how I was in 2007. This incident on the way to the post office even if it was for 5 seconds and half of my nerves were everywhere, have taught me something more.

This whole week was about new experiences and lessons as well as remembering the life lessons that I have already picked up while being living in Madrid.

Meanwhile I was reflecting on what would happen if didn't move from Hortaleza. It was a moment of weakness that made me feel a bit queesy. All people do there is moan and complain about anything that apparently is not their “norm”. I would have probably frozen to death on the terrace from the cold, with Mitzy the poor dog who I forget what breed she is, the only people who actually pay attention to her are the men in that flat. I think she and my cat would have got on great.

But I don't live there now and the weekend it snowed, made me see how lucky I am that I survived all the elements Mother Nature decided to throw at me.

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

The Incredible Shrinking Me.

The other day when I was taking a walk to Cuidad Lineal, I noticed that my jeans seemed to be looser than the week before. So I decided to weigh myself. I thought it's probably nothing, I've worn out these jeans for the last fortnight I couldn't have possibly lost weight but in fact the scales weren't lying and neither were the clothes that were a little tight on me either.

I did begin to wonder how is it possible that I lost weight this week.

In the last month, ever since the early days of January I've lost 11lbs in body weight. That's three lbs short from a stone. Now I would be lying if I said that I'm following a meticulous dieting regime where no sugar, fat or carbs were allowed but the truth is, that in the last week, I've done nothing but eat rubbish. Not to mention candy and chocolate sundaes. Last Saturday I had two egg and sausage Mac Muffins.

It could be a number of things and pregnancy isn't one of them. You're suppose to put on weight not lose it, unless there is something really wrong. I am not taking dieting pills and grapefruit juice is a little hard to come by where I now live.

There are a few things that I've stopped eating or eating less of. For starters, I don't eat white bread any more. I didn't eat so much of it back in London but seeing that it's cheaper I use to buy lots of it. But for an extra euro, I am willing to make this sacrifice. I don't eat so much mayonnaise and introduced a lot of vegetables and salads in my diet. There are a lot of other things I am not eating. I wish I can say chocolate but I'm a woman for God's sake.

I know it can only be one thing. Stress. With moving stuff, from flat to flat, Moses being away in Peru, that time of the month arriving two weeks after the last one and having to deal with the 30 and 40 something women all acting like they're five at work, I'm overstressed. I wonder if the grey hair I found this morning was the result of the last couple of weeks. That and the in explainable weight loss.

That grey hair was not there last week that´s for sure!

Don't get me wrong I am really happy that I've lost weight but 11lbs in the space of 3 weeks for me is not normal unless I weigh 90 kilos which I don't.

I need to get to the bottom of what ever it is that is making me lose weight. Sometimes when I get back from my walk from where ever it is I am going, I feel really light headed and dizzy and that's 3 hours after I've eaten a big meal. I

I was ironing my uniform and I came across one pair of pants that I have to wear. I have them in different sizes, 12 and 14. I thought the 12s were the bigger size until I started Ironing the other pair. And as for the T shirt, God it's huge!

Right if this keeps up I will need to seek medical advice, even if it is in the most depressing district in the City of Madrid. Perhaps there is an explanation to all this. Hopefully it's not Thyroid or even worse a tapeworm.

I'll keep you posted on how things are.



Monday, 26 January 2009

The Wild Chick Returns.

I can't believe it's been three months since I last posted a blog on here.

Well a lot has happened in the last three months. I've moved again for one thing. The rent was way too high where I was living and keeping my poor kitten locked up in my room while I went to work was not what I had planned when I decided to move into the flat.

I've had no internet for 3 months and I was paying for a subscription which I was not getting at all. I thought with the money I was forking out I could have easily got wireless but nevermind.

Work is still the same, apart from the fact that although January is when things go quiet, it has been really busy but more on that later on.

Oh yeah and Moises is visiting family in Peru there are a number of co workers mostly the women, hell bent to make my life a misery. it makes me wonder if they have anything better to do.. guess not.

While saying goodbye to Moises at the airport, I did meet his sister too which for me is a lot when a guy introduces his girlfriend to members of his family. it was a very hard goodbye. but the 10th Feb is around the corner.

I have a lot of catching up to do. I need to find a flight to Stockholm to visit Mia but it's not as easy as it once was. But I'm sure they'll be some kind of sign telling me what to do.

OK enough blabbing for now. the Internet here is a little limited and I just wanted everyone to know that I am alive and well.

Sadly the cat had to go but she's in a nicer place instead of being locked up. I've always said, I don't want an unhappy cat.