Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sunday Back Home

This is an illustrated post. Got back from Biloxi on Saturday. Decided to spend the day with the family in Plaza Las Americas. As always an obligated stop is Borders. I always end up buying some obscure book or some music I can't find elsewhere. I drew the sketch on the left on the Children's section of the store.

I was trying to get a book for my son but for some strange reason it has not been issued on paperback yet and there is no hard copy anywhere.

It is incredible how much time I spend on bookstores. But...I finally found a used copy of the Ghost Map...It was on the Spanish Trail Bookstore in Biloxi. I truly wish this type of store were available in Puerto Rico!!! In case you are wondering it is the story of the Cholera outbreak in Victorian London.

They also had this nice exhibition of old cars. I took the chance to sketch this one, although there were many interesting cars. A little partial to corvettes and camaros, but still had some nice vintage cars. That visit took quite a while.

We decided to close the evening by having some coffee, chocolate, eclairs and stuff on La Patisserie. Must have passed that corner a thousand times, never was interested on entering until Sunday.

The image above tries to convey the crowdiness of the site. It is like a local panaderia, but I am partial to spanish operated panaderias.
At the end I'm sorry the opaque images. I dodn't have my office scanner working so I am using the camera to get the images. For some reason they always come out overexposed.
In my case all this walking showed me the evolution of Plaza Las Americas. In my day and age my favorite spots were Cinefoto, Thekes, Woolworths (how I miss those cafeterias) and Video Sonics. There were many others (Gonzalez Padin, Discomania) but I guess change cannot be avoided.
On high school and college my favorite area was the movie theaters, timeout, pueblo supermarket and pizza hut in the corner where now is macy's and borders. We always ended our visits dining together for some Orange Julius (how I miss that chain!) and some Sbarro Pizza. Mom loved the driks, so did we.
Now I close this note to get back to my projects that are still there, on the backburner, even after two weeks off Puerto Rico.


antigonum cajan said...

Been there done that.

Corvettes and Camaros were, along with those huge living rooms with four doors, some of my favorites in early years, until...

I saw: Sunbean Alpine,
Triumph,MG,Alfas, Austin Healy, Studebakers..Somehow they seemed more intelligently built.

More sophisticated in use of metal, gas, design.

Nice post. Not many places to go here. With children..even more difficult.

My tolerance thin, as it is, can only deal with Plaza very early when the populace is still in bed. Until then.

Kofla Olivieri said...

I've never been a fan of Plaza. Overprized and overcrowded. My sister travels to Plaza from Mayaguez to do her shopping, lol I always tease her about that, lol

Beato said...

At some point I always return to Plaza Las Americas. However I liked the older look and feel of the place. When it was still a mall and not a status symbol.
I'd usually stop by the old movie theaters, spend a couple of dollars playing Tron, Star Wars, Centipede, etc. with my friends, check the comics booth by Gonzalez Padin. See whether someone was playing the piano on the escalator to the second floor of Gonzalez Padin (Luis A Ferre used to play a couple of songs every once in a while). Check the new 12 inch remixes on Video Sonics, stop by Discomania to check the latest speed metal import records and the rock posters and end up doing philosophical discussions with my prostatehood friend (and war history expert, even while in high school).
On later ages I'd check cinephoto for lenses and negative for my girlfriend (now wife) camera, check timis for christmas ornaments and see the most recent anime series available on video. But mostly, I;d hang there a couple of hours while the traffic on Hato Rey and Roosevelt Avenue dropped a bit.
I now go and mostly I'd be around Borders and the movie theaters. I'll still see the sculptures but there is really not much to see anymore. The new stores don't appeal to me. I'd rather go to Rio Piedras or San Patricio. On the path Plaza lost its touch with humanity. Even when they scream they have a Puertorican heart and that they preserve our culture.
But from Mayaguez to hang in Plaza??? Really? I don't get it. Mayaguez Mall is a darned good mall. Then you have Ponce and Plaza del Atlantico in Arecibo. There is some crowdiness in Plaza, but crowdiness is what forced me out of Plaza del Sol in Bayamon.
Goes with Antigonum's point that there is no real place for kids to hang in Puerto Rico. Malls are romper room for kids to hang out in. Thing is, I saw the same thing in Biloxi, where the kids hang at Wal Mart. Now, that is low...

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