Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Killer Hooch

(Kaiser and Domingo playing on the beach)

In Nicaragua 35 people died and 600 are ill because of some poorly mixed moonshine. The moonshiners responsible for the deadly brew were trying to give their booze some punch with industrial strength alcohol.

This bit of news could be painted in a humorous light, and I’m sure it will, but it really is awful. Read more about it HERE.

I don’t drink often, but I can honestly say I have fond memories of drinking cheap and yummy Nicaraguan rum with Nicaraguans. When I heard the news, I immediately thought of the friends I made over a small bottle of Flor de Cana rum.

Here, have a sample (from a recent column):

Soon the four of us are sitting beneath the shade of a tree near the water’s edge. We chat about our lives and worlds. Domingo, a former cruise ship waiter, and Wycliffe, an aspiring baker, are lifelong friends who have brought Kaiser, Wycliffe’s son, to the beach to play.

Wycliffe pulls out a small bottle of rum and Domingo twists open a bottle of Coca-Cola. They have a rapidly melting chunk of ice wrapped in a plastic bag and pound it against a nearby rock. Splashes of Rum and Coke are poured over ice into two Styrofoam instant noodle cups.

While we talk, Kaiser digs in the sand, occasionally, stopping to bring us sand dollars.

Totally unexpected, a little grit of sand, lightly rolling surf, on an isolated beach in Nicaragua with two buddies and a child building cities from sand and imagination – it’s how all rum and cokes should be served.

I’m not sure about travel changing a fella, but it sure does put real faces to half-inch news blurbs.
I wonder if I would have taken a comedic crack at the Killer Hooch story if I had never been to Nicaragua?

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