37 Degrees Celcius Below the Equator

imageA belly full of coldhotair and nothing more.
A mind crowded with empty lusts and dried out libations from the night before.
The winter winds from back home miss their opportunity to reach the lost ones below the equator.
They’ve just missed us.
And so we sweat in silence and misleading solitude in this summer nonsense, waiting for a piece of yesterday’s home to find its way here and settle on our parched coffee flavored tongues. The taste of freedom. I sort of remember the feeling from a middaydream in Pearland.

Now half a world away, there’s no electrical power in site, no running water to inspire us, no cool breeze to forget about the skeletons. This is South America in the summertime it seems and the people are turning. Some for the coast and others stubbornly root themselves in this cloud of intense heat.

An orgy of men mixed with women and men too hot to speak and too proud to shed their heavy layers of clothing pass by in sweltering silence.  And so we stare straight away, gnawing on our espresso stained parched tongues. Unvoiced, unheard and thirsty for a cold one.
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Have you looked up lately?
We are perfectly enveloped by misplaced beautifully schizophrenic concrete constructed buildings. An unplanned mixture of architecture from an ancient age of kings, and the queens of the 80’s. Evita there. The Artist Formally Known as Prince there.
I search WebMD to make sure I haven’t turned completely sour. Turns out, there’s no telling until its too late.

Now its the hot darkness of a latin summer that tickles our minds, now full of locked up courage and important things to say,  but no ear to make it out.
Yet there’s a numbing comfort that unapologetically squeals in my head, just behind the place where no one can make it out except you now.

We find ourselves in a lost kingdom of ruins. Hot, hot even still. And it’s only January.

The best part of it all, of all the absurdity, is the journey towards the beer. Back to freedom.

And so I leave a trail of thick sweat stains planted in the concrete jungle of Buenos Aires to encourage the thirsty misplaced youths towards the great and powerful boOZe.

Towards our freedom.

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And so begins our journey, friends.

Put on a good face and get your wits about you as we prepare to make friends and enemies alike. Adventuring to lands foreign never left a sweet taste in anyone’s mouth while moving about virgin lands with closed eyes. So then, let us voyage onward the right way, shall we?
I invite you to relinquish your grip on all things normal and comfortable; to open your eyes a little whilst we lose ourselves in translation, little by little. Even if only to capture a tiny, raw, unsolicited peek at the this-and-thats, the gadgets-and-gismos, and the who’s-its-and-what’s-its that walk about, one foot in front of the other. Who speak in absurd yet tempting tongues, which sound familiar still, and feel like passion and excitement wrapped into a big ball of delight, or worse, immortality.  The destination – Argentina. In and around one of it’s most enticing cities, whose very name loosely translates to “Good Airs.”

Buenos Aires – the land infamously known, to a small amount of folk unfortunately, for its good vibes and good airs. Consider yourself one of the rare breed, one of the chosen few who is about to discover one of the world’s best kept secrets. A land of succulent foods and supreme libations, she is. We will explore the whos-its and whats-its around her provinces and neighboring lands, and return with fascinating gems and jewels to show all of Texas. If you’re still with me, good. Pack your essentials, zip your case of suits, lock it, and then quickly bury it in your closet alongside the rest of those skeletons. You won’t be needing a bag of hodgepodge where we’re going. Nope, just your wits.

Now then, let’s discuss [our] mission at hand. [I’ve included you by no mistake]. The good folks at Mongoose Versus Cobra have implored me to explore this land. I am therefore seeking a companion to, at the greatest hour and during the sweetest climactic moments, make things look easy. You fit the bill, my friend. And because I know you so well, this should be as easy as pie indeed. I left my family behind and have thus been given, by our country’s most valiant defender of integrity and selfless pride, the title of conquistadora… and you, my faithful squire. Just as MvsC “strives to champion the most artfully and passionately made beer and spirits” in Houston, so shall we champion the treasures of this Southland with a passionately filled belly of lustful libations, great airs, and unabashedly encouraging vibes. It is therefore up to us to cast a light on its hidden treasures, and return home with a little more gold and cojones than what we left with. Too valiant, you say? Perhaps. But just think of the duty we have. The courage we must show. All of the drinking to be done…I  should mention that I have already come across a rambunctious bushel of Irishmen and Englishmen, who are a long way from home, and who do this sort of thing from sunrise to sunset, with their eyes closed. And so they thrive.

I’ll do my best to lay out a most appetizing smorgasbord of all things art, literature, culture, and damn good libations from the Southland – Argentina – so that we might feast like kings! And because we are all aware of what you read when no one is watching, those trivial, self exposing yet chivalrous pieces of literature, I am quite certain you’ll enjoy this adventure in the key of Cervantes’s most valiant being, Don Quixote de La Mancha.

Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s Don Quixote was once noted as the finest novel ever written and the greatest story ever told. Not just during the Golden Age, but during the entire spectrum of human existence. To some, Don Quixote is regarded as the birth of modern literature and the breeding of characters set out on knight-errant journeys in search of adventure. Many have attempted to translate the original Spanish text into English while staying true to its original intentions. Unfortunately, many have mistranslated the piece while attempting to please all parties involved in the accreditation of the work – It’s critics, It’s public, the Spanish Dynasty, and perhaps even the Pope. And so this becomes our mission, except for the pleasing all parties bit, to tell the greatest story ever told, through our eyes. For if you don’t offend your neighbor with a good sense of wit to challenge them, to challenge ourselves, and to question the clouds in the sky, then why are we here? We will get lost in translation as we channel our inner Don Quixote, learning from his mistakes and using them in our defense to make life a bit more worth living.

More to come in the next few days. Stick with me, faithful friend. Bring your flask and your honor. They say there’s a little bit of Texas around every corner. As such, we will journey forward and conquer this fertile piece of heaven and hell on earth, together.

The Golden Age is no longer behind us, it is at our very fingertips!

Chapter 1 will begin with finding damn good spirits along the countryside. And this shall be the quest of the rest that follow.

Until the next time we meet…

MVSC’s Foreign Corespondent – a year in Argentina

MsdMaryella Shelton-Dyson broadcast her special brands of passion, fun, and creativity here at the Mongoose over the last year.  Now she is visiting the Land of Good Breezes, and as Mongoose Versus Cobra’s first International Literary Correspondent, she will be regularly updating us on her experiences both inside bars and outside in the World.  Travel on, Maryella; your Safe Quarters wait for your return!

About her: Maryella Dyson describes herself as a free spirit, eager to travel the world with paper and pen in hand. She is a creative soul with a passion for influencing the masses with words on a page, through the arts, and through all avenues of creative expression. Maryella writes poetry, character sketches, plays, short stories, children’s stories and never ending to-do lists. Born in Los Angeles, California and raised in Jonesboro, Georgia, Maryella put her creative wits to the test by obtaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Theatre, with a Concentration in Writing, and a Minor in Spanish, from The University of Georgia. She moved back to her native homeland of California after graduating in 2010, and worked as a an actor while simultaneously developing and pitching her scripts in Los Angeles. She also worked as creative consultant and executive assistant to one of Hollywood’s most ambitious executive producers. While there, she gained expertise in developing research, creating unique writing content, editing, and developing manuscripts. She was also responsible for drafting outlines and conceptualizing stage production for various projects.

Her most treasured works include her original one woman show, Blue Skies, performed to three sold out audiences on Theatre Row in Los Angeles, California and in Athens, Georgia; Minnie Monkey in Bonkersville, a children’s interactive book series that combines written text and visual web scenes targeting 2-8 year olds, to be released this year; and her collection of short stories and poems to be released in 2014.

Maryella has lived in Buenos Aires, Argentina and in Valencia, Spain in an effort to become bilingual, to study different cultures, and to expand her global awareness. During her past travels, she served as Arts and Culture Analyst at Elkafka Teatro in Buenos Aires, Argentina where she researched literary material, organized and transcribed catalogues, and evaluated students and instructors in an institutionalized performance environment. She was also an active member and volunteer teacher for a prestigious linguistic and multicultural exchange program in Spain.

Maryella lived in Houston for a spell after Los Angeles, and fell in love with Texas! She is now living in Argentina, and will write for Mongoose Versus Cobra´s Blog as she settles into her new life as an American Emigrant. She hopes to find the hidden treasures of this unfamiliar country while discovering the similarities of her former lover, Texas. Some of her favorite writers include Oscar Wilde, Woody Allen, Eugène Ionesco, Aaron Sorkin and William Shakespeare.

Some of her private works can be accessed at: www.maryellawrites.blogspot.com