Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Feliz Cumpleaños Neto!!

I had such good intentions for a birthday surprise. I planned a day of horseback riding in Ciudad Colon, about 30 minutes outside of San Jose. I had even bought accessories for the honorable cowboy! When outside San Jose, you see a lot of men wearing long leather sheaths attached to their belts that carry a huge machete. I went downtown to a leather shop and found the sheath...fringe and all. I hid it under the front seat of the car, and when we went for coffee the night before his birthday, Neto felt it hit his foot and pulled it up. "What is this?" Ugh! I was upset. There is nothing I hate more than spoiled surprises! I wrapped it up anyway, and he next morning he acted surprised when he opened it.

Present #2 was opened while in the car. I still had not told him where we were going. It was the coolest bull head belt buckle. Yes, every cowboy needs a belt buckle. He figured out my surprise.

Did you know that Neto has a degree in Equine Science? Anywho, I knew he would love this adventure. What I didn't know, (until we got there) is that the place was only. open. on. weekends. Caramba! Strike two. It was not going well.

Plan B. As decided by the birthday boy. Ate lunch of french bread and salami. Read. Took a long rainy afternoon nap. Went to the gym and got ready for dinner.

In keeping with the cowboy theme (that went to hell due to no horses. yes, I'm still mad about it), for dinner I took Ernesto to eat at El Chicote, a San Jose landmark specializing in grilled meats. It opened nearly fifty years ago and is still run by the original owner, Roberto Pérez.

Neto poses with his new machete.I love the buckle. I know Brrrian loves it, but what about the others? Would you wear this? El Chicote is only 5 blocks from our apartment in Sabana Norte. Many nights we have walked by it on our way for coffee. It always looks so inviting. I think it is the soft yellow lighting coming through the arches of the outdoor patio. We stopped one night to look at the menu and decided it was a place for a special occasion [read: not cheap]
It wasn't the best steak we had ever eaten (this is what eating Argentine beef will make you say for the rest of your life) but the service was great and they even brought out a little postre and sang for Neto. mmm Tres Leches (three milks cake)
After dinner, we went for a coffee at our usual spot. Neto pulled out the bill and saw that the fresh palmito (heart of palm) that we ordered (one for each of us) for an appetizer was $17 a pop! what? I think that tops as the most expensive appetizer I have ever ordered.

Even though we were not in the least bit hungry, I lit up the candles, sang to him again, and he was able to blow them out in just one puff. He's got the lungs of a 27 year old. Despite my spoiled surprises, Neto said he had a great birthday and he is really excited to try and defend me from crocodiles this weekend with his new knife.

More to come on that..........

1 comment:

  1. Those are probably the coolest birthday gifts ever!


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