Ride or Die, The Superstition Mountain

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Summer time is done for most of the continental states in this country of ours, but Arizona still has a few more weeks of hot weather. I am taking the time right now to weather proof one of my cars so I can take some road trips as the weather cools down.

This is when I say to my ride-or-die friends, who choose to join me on these far out travels, that my only advise is to prepare for a great time and to expect the unexpected.

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We often visit museums, movie and music festivals and other extravagant and simple affairs such as Ostrich Festival, The Scottish Games which feature highland pageantry with bagpipes and drums, to the Renaissance Festival. Near the Christmas season upon us we may go to a Tuba Concert happening in Flagstaff. There’s one in Tempe, AZ that I have attended before and its definitely a lot of fun.

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Who knows what awaits us for what’s left of 2019, only what Google and a couple invites that I have in my inbox, perhaps we do some research and depending on our journey we add a couple more exciting events and stops.

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I’d say we will come back with more AirB&B Stories to share and perhaps some new and interesting activities we may have tried.

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There’s so much out there and at times I only hope I had more time to spend seeing what a beautiful country we have, not only from the natural wonders of the world like the Grand Canyon, but plenty of hike spots with gorgeous trails like Havasupai Falls, that will surely amaze you with absolute picturesque and grandiose splendor.

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Until next time, hopefully before the New Year celebrations, I will take the time to write an update on my end-of-year expeditions.

Be well.

Carlos Solis

 

 

 

Out on the town

Just came back from an Asian cuisine restaurant and was complemented on my Hawaii style shirt which made me look more like Panama Jack except I was not wearing my new fedora.

No, this is not the photo of one of the girls a the restaurant tonight, It just showed up on my feed from one of the models photographed last summer by yours truly. That’s all.

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As hungry as I was, since it was past 20:00hrs-to my surprise, I got my veggies and shrimp (carrots and asparagus)  dinner order as fast as I got my smooth coconut drink.

Kitchens past 8pm seem faster than lightning these days in Arizona. Besides meeting a couple of nice sweet girls at this Asian fusion restaurant, this dish now seemed to be more like the one those NYC joints on 5th Ave serve than the local Tempe scene if you wanna know the truth.

The best part of tonight had to be meeting the said two lovely ladies who were just sipping a nice glass of red at the bar, I think they just had finished a marvelous dinner and were raving all about that too. It helps to ask when you don’t know the menu of a new restaurant, which in this case, new to me perhaps. Both ladies suggested what to order and I made my final decision with the waitress who spoke perfect Spanish.

I love practicing my language skills every time I have a chance. So as we cheered to a coconut drink along with their fine red wine and between all the baseball chatter and work related get-to-know each other stuff, after finding out that one of the 2 sitting to my left works in marketing, it just happens that I get an invite to a fun event this Sunday at Biltmore Fashion Park, where our new Phoenix Mayor, the honorable Kate Gallego will be ribbon cutting another exciting new business called ‘Meat the Ball’

I couldn’t stop but immediately think of Lucille Ball from ‘I Love Lucy’ and the rest is history. I did invite the girls to lunch for having suggested so many good things this evening and I am certainly most appreciative to restaurants like Flo’s Tempe who go above and beyond to please a rushing and imposing customer like myself.

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If you happen to be in Tempe AZ these days, do stop at this corner near Baseline and Rural intersection where you will definitely find some of the most talked-about and fine Asian restaurants in the area.  The photo above is what I probably need to start wearing to these lovely little restaurants, they have so much to offer, I hated to show up in my summer shorts. Oh well. Until next time.

Be well…

Carlos Solis

 

 

My rendition to Johnny Depp

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This last few months have brought some of the most amazing and surprisingly sweet events, such as divine appointed projects in my life. Pictured with me the gorgeous Luna Lovegood played by Miss S Nevada.

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One said and unique opportunity, I just had to jump at it with no remorse, not only for being the only opportunity ever, to give one of my favorite actors in Hollywood, a photographic rendition to his work in the big screen. But my only chance to do it so well.

This event I am talking about came true when a model friend of mine Elizabeth set up a Harry Potter themed day at The Grove, a local organization in Gilbert AZ, with a progressive church, complete with eclectic gardens and textured terrain that resembles what you would find in one of those Johnny Depp-magical films with such ease and flair. This images are mostly by my friend JBGW of Denver, Colorado.

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The photographic session was a huge success and fortunately came at just about 4 weeks after the release of the $200 million budget film  ‘Fantastic Beast, The Crimes of Grindelwald’ featuring Johnny Depp as Gellert Grindelwald and produced by Warner Bros.

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So far, I have been lucky to receive many accolades from leading media organizations for this ‘magical’ endeavor.

JOHNNY DEPP as Gellert Grindelwald

The Plot. In 1927, the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) is transferring the powerful dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald from their maximum security prison to London to be tried for his crimes in Europe.

Grindelwald (Johnny Depp) escapes during the transfer, aided by his follower and MACUSA employee, Abernathy. Don’t miss this film if you haven’t had the honor to watch it. Pictured below: Me as Johnny Depp on Crimes of Grindelwald. More on the horizon for sure…

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Mexico loves Papas & Beer

In the last few months I visited Rosarito, a cozy little beach town in the south of Tijuana BC when I was performing work for a local Mexican database company.

Pics by Carlos Solis @GC
Pics by Carlos Solis @GC

And just now in October, we had the pleasure of taking a 5-day cruise to Ensenada.

The Groove Cruise is the premiere electronic dance music vacation you can take any where in the world. This year my long time wish had been to make it to Los Cabos, or Cabo San Lucas as many know it by name Saint Luke Cape, a modern and sophisticated resort city in the southern tip of the Baja California Sur state in Mexico on what is known as the Baja California Peninsula separating the Pacific Ocean from the Sea of Cortez. Some 800 nautical miles each way from our port city of San Diego in California.

Pics by Carlos Solis @GC
Pics by Carlos Solis @GC
Pics by Carlos Solis @GC
Pics by Carlos Solis @GC

Nevertheless “Sergio” a tropical storm, that dissipated by Friday October 12 at 3:00 p.m. made it difficult for us to get to our promised destination, as we were advised once we had embarked on our ship, the Norwegian Pearl belonging to NCL.

 

Pics by Carlos Solis @GC
Pics by Carlos Solis @GC

 

As our new destination had been announced, we got settled in on our ship and made the best of it with sports like basketball and ping-pong, there’s even a casino on the ship, many up scale restaurants, a spa, shopping mall and then for some 96 hours we were treated to world renowned DJ’s such as Benny Benassi and Duke Dumont among many others, who made sure various digital sounds, along with the best light shows and go go dancers, entertained us all aboard.

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The Groove Cruise or ‘GC’ is billed as the event with the most fans for EDM (electronic dance music) such as house, trance and techno, has many loyal and dedicated followers from nations around the world who have grown up accustomed to several theme parties, among them, futuristic, neon, shine the f%ck up, and tutus and ties.

Pics by Carlos Solis @GC
Pics by Carlos Solis @GC

Day One on the GC featured Captains or new comers wear  ‘white’. At times called ‘Virgins’ due to being the first time embarking the GC. This year GC accomplished their 30th sailing, just to give you a little bit of how multi-dimensional this tour of music is.

Some compared it to Burning Man, and other key EDM Festivals around the world.

Next, if you know someone who may be interested. Groove Cruise is preparing sailings from Miami to Cozumel and the Florida Keys, embarking in Fort Lauderdale. There’s even a rumor of a GC coming up after 2019 that will be hosted from Hong Kong in Asia.

Things are getting pretty hopeful going global for Groove Cruise for sure. Oh and Papas & Beers is a spot we spent the day at while in Ensenada, Mexico.

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A new day…

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Every day, you have the chance to start fresh.

In the midst of either, working, looking for a job, not just any job, maybe a better job that pays you well and suits your abilities much better. Or maybe you are going to school and getting more education in other field so that you can see an improvement in your chosen career.

My wish for you is that ‘all’ your needs will be met without so many financial struggles and stress.

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As I sit at the beautiful Riparian Reserve, a well-appointed botanical garden today and ponder this subject that affects many all over the state, not just Arizona but also, in neighboring states.

Although the West coast is supposed to be a leader in wages and economic stability. It is not, so I am told. I do see, however, a tremendous growth with companies who are moving here to help prosper the cities they employ such as Uber, Google, Apple, Amazon and many others that I know you are very familiar with by now.

So today, I am gathering more background information because I feel is important to know the actual state of individuals who call the ‘West Coast’ home.

I wanna know what folks are doing to save funds to actually then take much needed vacations, buy appropriate transportation, so they can go to work or school, and since we know that fossil fuel powered vehicles will be outdated in a couple decades altogether, maybe sooner. I am sure TESLA can’t wait for that day when all cars are electric or solar powered.

And do let me know what are your dream destinations as well. Do interact with this webpage or any of my social media platforms provided at the end of this write-up.

And because I do love the few nature spots found here in Arizona.

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The state of your well-being concerns me and I wanna know what can be done to help in any way I can, wether I can provide more resources to specific individuals who reach out to me, or point you in the right direction to movers and shakers who can help in the subject matter at hand.

Believe you me, I do come across many influencers, social media gurus, investors and even political figures or leaders who DO make a difference out there.

Now, is just a matter of working together and strategize your next move.

That’s how the world can experience real progress-I’ve learned long ago, but not many act on it, and not many publish with integrity and truth. In a new era of wild and free advertisement of lies, it is hard to discern from those that really have a heart and have an honest desire to help you and not make you the victim of fraud. I’ve seen too many of those out there only doing it for a quick buck. I hate marketers driving Ferraris and showing you off great mansions and extravagant life-styles, when, in the end, they are actually just trying so hard to sell you on a ‘get rich quick’ scheme.

Do not fall for any of those, I beg you. It is like ‘throwing your money’ away.

On that topic, I don’t do my blog to just show off that I can go to places, but to show ways I enjoy nature, exotic and different foods and many other intricacies that you will experience when traveling abroad.

So, go out there and if you are able, spoil yourself, take that well-deserved vacation to the dream destination you always pictured in your mind you would take.

In my case, I do a lot of local photography assignments and get hired to do photography and film all over the world. Pictured here a lady and her nice boat.

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Experiencing other languages and meeting folks from around the world, has opened my eyes and brought me a new perspective, also a new approach to getting the most out of every day. Life is more than working to pay bills and one day just die.

Also lately, I noticed that I don’t let stress get me for lack of work, or too much work either, or if a check from a job does not get to me on time, I do not let that get the best of me. Of course, just like everyone, I wish to have a happy, healthy and fulfilled life.

Upon closing my quick rant today, I hope you can share with me some of ‘your’ travel adventures or if you prefer, daily living experiences. Even if you don’t get to travel much due to intensive work, studies or both. Tell me where the HOT jobs are also. It is no longer popular to be loyal to a company when that company is not loyal to you. I get it.

Or let me know what new field of study have you taken up these days.

Are YouTube videos really helping out?

Life is whatever you want it to be. I just enjoy mine, traveling and meeting diverse people from around the world. The food I eat there, and the photos I bring back are not that bad either!

Be blessed, have a great season, and until next time…

Carlos Solis

 

 

Summer Blues

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As the school year gets started once again, one of the spots that’s sure to have everything in the West coast if you have the ‘summer time blues’ is the glorious Coronado Hotel in San Diego, California.

As soon as I arrived from a long work week, make that two. I kicked back and enjoyed the food the restaurants provide in this unique spot, along with some awesome desserts to include ‘Gelato’ or ice-cream as some of you ‘world travelers’ may call it.

My favorite has got to be to relax on the sandy beach this hotel provides. There are always so many activities going on, with music and enough folks to feel like you are secluded in paradise. I did witness a wonderful wedding.

My next adventure coming up, will be sailing from San Diego on the Norwegian Pearl Cruise come October. I won a trip from my generous past travel mileage plan, and this time the exotic destination is called Cabo San Lucas in Mexico.

If you never been on a Groove Cruise, this is something you will totally remember for a long time-if not for the rest of your life. Stay tuned. Cabo here we come!

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Mexico Under Your Skin

Fashion Show (Photos & Videos)

From 6:00pm-10:00pm on Saturday June 9, at the F.A.B.R.I.C. facilities in the heart of ASU in Tempe, Arizona. All the fashionistas gathered to view one of the most amazing shows to make a statement in the United States with emphasis on the top 12 fashion designers of Mexican heritage. There were even designers who specialize in children and teens.

The colors, the music, the models, every single detail was created to perfection as the hundreds of people who gathered therein were able to enjoy.

Univision, the Spanish broadcasting station was there during the preliminary work, the show and the after-party. Find the many media outlets with #mexicounderyourskin

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Photo: Andrew Millett