When I´m not doing this whole weekly lifestyle columnist thing for the Tribune, I´m something of a community organizer in my role as chief social coordinator at Vallarta CoWork.
You see, by day these air-conditioned confines are a hub of productivity offering a view of the Pacific to the freelancers and entrepreneurs that call it their offices, but by night it´s…well, whatever I want it to be.
At least once a month we open the space up to regulars and randoms alike for the purposes of brand awareness…or at least, that’s how I sold it when convincing the brass to let me throw parties after work on the company dime on a regular basis..
The Vibes: Vallarta veterans know that right about now is the start of what they call high season, the time of year where all the Americans, Canadians, and off-continent peoples who call this country home return to experience of the best weather and biggest events of the year as well as escaping the inhumanly cold winters of their frozen northern lands.
Old friends get reacquainted for another year, hibernating bars and restaurants reopen their doors to accommodate the influx of visitors, music at a maximum volume of 69 decibels streetside tries in vain to fill the streets…just over a decade removed from my last days on campus, it kinda reminded me of Homecoming.
And so, I took my role as PVHS class president very seriously on the evening of the event, digging up some of my finest regalia for the special occasion…besides, I only get to wear my leather pants, like, 5 times a year. Head of Art Club Nicté–pictured, smiling–was kind enough to prepare a special jalepeño pineapple margarita to greet incoming guests because the first thing you want to do before you start drinking is to start drinking.
Classmates and alumni filtered in after an early delay–you would think The City would put out some kind of warning about closing off the main thoroughfare into the heart of town for a scheduled parade but hey–and we all munched on a balanced diet of cheese curls and pineapple because it is important to drink responsibly.
The Vices: The feature of this month’s get-together was a tasting of tequil–uh, mezcal?–wait, no, raicilla? Okay, raicilla! (Hey, a supplier fell through and sometimes you just have to make it work.)
What’s important is that Edgar, a familiar face to folks who have attended the various beer festivals and spirit samplings in the area, somehow made time to host the affair on a week’s notice.
Edgar demonstrated his knowledge of Jalisco´s outlaw libation to the assembled, outlining the process of making raicilla and showing what separates it from its more famous, lower-octane cousin. I wish I remembered more of the presentation, it was actually very engaging, but you know what, you try downing 5 shots of Mexican moonshine before writing a book report.
After the structured sipping segment, there was an hour or three of free drinking time on the agenda. Animated conversations and raucous laughter flirted dangerously with the new city code for noise levels. (Can you tell that decision displeases me?)
By now even Edgar had joined in on the elbow workout, taking full advantage of our unlimited refills policy. I stuffed my face with salmon dip, and a guest brought some guacamole from the restaurant downstairs to share with the class. By midnight, new friends were made and everyone was good and lubricated…an exemplary display of PVHS school spirit.
The Verdict: I don’t make a habit of writing bad reviews, and this bit of shameless self-promotion definitely won’t be one of them. I certainly had a hell of a time at the event, and the fact that I get to call things like that my job certainly adds to my gratitude for this roll of the dice at life.
The offices of Vallarta CoWork, normally a Place of Business, can transform into any type of venue I enjoy–except for a strip club, Miguel gave me a direct ¨no¨ on that one– and our yearly pizza posada is going to be more of my signature stellar shenanigans…maybe I’ll catch you there.