Thursday, January 24, 2008

Cocoa, cinnamon and jalapenos, oh my!

I tasted my first Mayan chocolate the other day. It was in the form of sipping chocolate, thick and creamy, with a hint of fire as it tumbled down my swan-like throat. I've been to Guatemala thrice. I've met with Shamans, have partaken in hallucinagenic poultices, learned to drop birds from the tops of ceiba trees using nothing but a hollowed-out bamboo shoot and a sharpened coati tooth dipped in the mashed remains of a poison dart frog (this would come in handy on trip number three, in my encounter with General Jorge Francisco, rest his dictatorial soul). Still, not once was I ever offered a taste of Mayan chocolate, in spite of what I still believe was my uncannily close relationship with the Mayans of the region. I would grouse, "harrumph," but that would be childish and gauche. Istead, I'll hold my head up and say, simply, "Cest le vie!"

It's been awhile since my last entry and I wish I could say it's because I've been oh, so busy, galavanting here and there around the globe, saving the world from evil men. But I can't. It's been positively, hideously boring, bunnies. Nothing but fruit cocktail, tea and butter cookies in between pedicures and Tupperware presentations. We're in canvassing mode right now. It seems that the troops are getting thin (in numbers, not in weight, unfortunately), thanks to age and mishaps. New blood is needed, so I've been hosting "cosmetic parties" while touring the country on what is being touted as the "geotastic tour." Ambassadors are making a monthlong swing through these glorious U-nited States, painting a bizzarely picturesque panorama of their acheivements as diplomats abroad. And the constant smiling I must do. Lord of lunchmeat, my face hasn't hurt this much since my mission in Sicily, when I was forced to drag 300-lb Don Vito Stromoli from the top of the butte to the seaside, using only my teeth and his smelly belt. Don't ask why, because it hurts just to think of it.

I shall be returning to Manhattan in a week. There is a purple hatbox waiting for me in the lobby of the Plaza Hotel. To be honest, I hope it's not a hat.

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