Friday, August 02, 2013

Travel Report: LAPT6 Peru, Day 1b -- The White Veil

Hello again from Lima, where the skies are overcast again today, as is usually the case.

All of my visits here have come during the late spring or summer, which means mild temperatures here south of equator. Had breakfast out on the hotel patio this morning, and while clouds hid the sun there was a slight breeze to make for a pleasant and quiet time to enjoy the meal and rejuvenate for the coming day.

The contrast with Las Vegas -- where I spent a month from mid-June to mid-July this summer for the World Series of Poker -- couldn’t be greater. Instead of 115 degrees it’s around 65 here. The overall pace is decidedly less frantic as well, with the days being long but over just after midnight (as opposed to 2-3 a.m. each evening at the Rio).

Yesterday the second of two Day 1 flights played out, and when play completed 104 players survived from the 334 total entries. They’ll join the 55 who made it through Wednesday’s Day 1a (from 213 entries) to make a field of 159 left to start today.

As the tourney progresses the focus on actual poker increases, reporting-wise. They’ll be making the money today (at 88 players), and probably get down to just three tables or thereabouts before coming back on Saturday to play down to an eight-handed final table. Thus will increase the need to track where the chips are going, how the big hands are playing out, and all of the other crucial moments that help define the event.

Meanwhile, these first couple of Day 1 flights have provided a few opportunities to share some color from the tournament as well as reflect a bit on the scene at large. Along those lines, one of the more fun posts from yesterday to write was one in which I talked about Herman Melville’s reference to Lima in Moby Dick, one that highlights the fog that often covers the coastal city during these middle months.

The allusion comes amid a chapter-length dissertation by Ishmael on “The Whiteness of the Whale,” with “the white veil” of fog that envelopes Lima in an inscrutable cloak one of several dozen examples brought up by the narrator. If you’re curious to see how I managed to fit that discussion into reporting from a poker tournament, click through and read the post, the title of which is borrowed from the book’s famous opening line.

There wasn’t too much fog on the walk over to the Atlantic City Casino this morning, although we have frequently experienced a kind of constant mist that has been present most times we’ve been outdoors. Again kind of reminds me of that covered walkway into the back of the Rio with the manmade mist spraying underneath to help visitors transition from the hot, hot parking lot into the cold, cold casino.

But these are fleeting comparisons, really, as the differences between the sites and what is happening at each seem much greater.

If you’re curious to read how the poker is playing out for today’s Day 2, click on over to the PokerStars blog.

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