Sunday, March 06, 2005

Sunday Stroll

It was kind of a gloomy day, not really beach weather. I was growing a bit restless so I decided to take the bus to the far side of town and just stroll around to see what I could see. The area I chose was around the public sports park where there are a few soccer fields, a baseball diamond, a running track, etc. You may recall that I have already visited a couple of other bars right across the street from this park, but I decided to wander a bit further afield. There weren't a lot of bars and the first place I found by hearing the click of billiard balls.

293) Centro Butanero Caballo Ballo

The only word in the name that I know is 'caballo' that means either horse or rider, depending upon its useage. All there was was the sign above a little doorway that opened directly onto a flight of cement stairs. I found the doorway and saw the sign because I had heard the click of billiard balls and was tracking it down. There was a Corona sign in the stairwell so I took a chance and went upstairs. The doorway was located on Rio Danubio (the street, not the river) just down the street from Brasillio.

There was, indeed, a bar there. It was a long old wooden bar with six wooden bar stools or chairs (they had backs). There wasn't a brass rail but there was a small brick protrusion that you could rest your foot upon if you chose to stand. The plave had a red-tile floor, the standard variety you see everywhere, and a jukebox playing Mexican melodies. There was a billiard table and a couple of older guys playing three-cushion, although not very well, from what I could tell. They were drinking and having a happy time though, keeping an eye on a soccer game that was playing on the one televison set. To the side of the billiard table was a large wooden cue holder with a broken mirror. Looked like the kind of place where a mirror might get broken. There were a couple of pictures of a Mexican rodeo on the wall, one mounted on either side of the pool cue holder. Maybe that is where the place got its name. There were seven white plastic tables covered with red and white checked tablecloths with the Corona logo on them. The white plastic chairs also had the Corona logo.

I had a Pacifico.

294) Nuevo Maracaibo Bar

It turned out that I wasn't too far from a fairly large walled cemetery. I walked around it but didn't find anymore bars so I walked straight down the street from the entrance. Mexican cemeteries are really interesting affairs and if I wasn't on a mission I might have spent some time looking around in it. They have many ornate tombstones and such, usually brightly decorated with flowers. Many of them have framed pictures or portraits of the deceased. They are usually very well maintained.

Anyway, I digress. Down Belice, the street, and just about at the intersection to San Salvador was this lively little place. It had a small wooden bar with blue-wash walls. There was a pool table and the place was fairly crowded. There were two white brick decorative arches along one of the walls with paintings of Puerto Vallarta on the wall underneath them. The rest of the decor consisted primarily of posters of scantily clad women and cars. Kind of what you would expect to see in a garage. There were a couple of pictures of Marilyn Monroe as well. There was kind of a darker room of to one side with a few tables and chairs and several people were in there drinking but I didn't pop my head in to check it out. There were plenty of people in the main room where I was and a couple came over to ask me where I was from, where I was staying, how I liked Puerto Vallarta, etc. Seemed like a friendly enough crowd that probably didn't see to many tourists in the place. Definitly a local hangout, looked like everyone in the place pretty much knew each other.

I had a Pacifico and ate some of the tasty spiced peanuts in the bowl on the bar.

I couldn't see too much more in the area so I decided to simply take the long walk home. It was getting really cloudy and I actually thought it might rain, although that would be most unusual for this time of year.

Knocked off 2 more on a day I thought would be a day-off so I now have 706 left to go.