journalman's Diaryland Diary


Blackberry Sangria, Futboleros, and Worldwide Travel Plans


I love when I discover a new, out-of-the way venue.

This one's located not far from my office and actually in a neighborhood I find myself traversing time and again. Yet out of the way enough to be considered off the beaten path.

Though the crazy Italiafest was going on in Manhattan one block away tonight, this particular street wasn't busy. It was dim, cobblestoned. European men in suits emerged from black cars and walked swiftly by.

The bar has a small, sharp, oval logo that is hard to decipher. It's obscurity and the fact that their signage was out of the pedestrian sightline drew me in.

It was exquisite on the inside. French Morroccan in theme; beautiful carvings and delicate silks. Candlelight, low lounge couches. Sparsely populated with a quiet, classy crowd. A bold, long, wooden bar.

My friend and I just smiled at eachother. This place is hot. Hot and undiscovered. Shy. I am not ever more stupefied then when faced with the combination of those three.

We split a small pitcher of sangria, and it was the most delicious sangria I've ever tasted. I've tasted a lot of sangria, and I only had 1.5 glasses. It was divine.

The secret, as it were, is the use of blackberry brandy. That, regular brandy, triple sec, and about 4 different kinds of wine. Fruits galore, including plump black berries. (The kind that get seeds stuck in your teeth).

I look forward to my return. They have cheese and fruit plates, I saw.


There is one type of shirt I could wear that, the MOMENT I put on, makes me positively irresistable to many women.

I'm not even kidding you. I'm only OK looking. This stuff is like a magic trick.

It's a BRASIL soccer shirt. This was proven during the summertime with my yellow t-shirt, and just today, I bought a zip-up sweatshirt.

The second I bought it, a really, really pretty Brazilian girl walked over and said hello. I thought she was going to kiss me, I'm not kidding you. She talked to me fora few minutes and then this man who very clearly was her boyfriend walked over. He was not happy.

I think women see black hair, brown skin, broad shoulders, and Brasil and immediately lose their god-damned minds. While leaving, a blue-eyed woman hustling in a business suit at the Delancey St station locked eye contact with me and smiled as I passed. Nearly took out and old lady as she turned the corner.

The shirt. I'm telling you. I am naming my firstborn son Futbalero.


I believe current political strife in Bangkok may effectively dissuade me from taking a trip there while in India this winter break.

My tickets to Bombay are purchased, and I leave NY just before Xmas and will return in the middle of January.

Heavy travel schedule once inside the country. Landing in Bombay, a few days with family, then up to New Delhi to meet 11 of my closest relatives for a prayer ceremony commemorating our passed relatives that will take place just after new years.

I have a choice at that time to venture south to Goa (tropical paradise) or north to Nepal. I'm still deciding, and there a million good reasons to do one and buy the book of the other.

Maybe I'll do something totally different. I have to do my research. I've been to India many times before, yet as I get older, I want each trip to be more and more meaningful.

If I go to Nepal, I'm taking my Brasil sweatshirt.

11:49 p.m. - 2006-09-20


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