Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Poetry in Motion

I can’t believe this is real life.  This is poetry in motion.

At one point as I sat on the beach on the west coast of Puerto Rico this weekend, I couldn’t help but be taken by the beauty of the sun hitting the water, the waves crashing onto shore, the fishing boat in the distance.  Poetry in motion.  

I returned to Guayama last night refreshed and rejuvenated after three amazing days with Rachel and Kelsey on our vacation in Rincon.  The vacation was just exactly what I needed.  The three of us laughed (a LOT), relaxed, saw the sights, went at our own pace, made decisions spontaneously, and put aside our worries and stressors for three days. 

Our Thanksgiving break trip started on Saturday morning, when we got up early and headed off towards the west side for a day at Crashboat Beach in Aguadilla (see Crashboat post for more on that).  Around 5pm, we packed up from the beach and began what should have been a half hour drive to Rincon and our hotel for the weekend.

Something we learned on Saturday:
Saturday, Nov. 19th was Puerto Rico Discovery Day.  On Puerto Rico’s Discovery Day, there is a horse parade in Aguada which includes over 1,000 horses.  We tried to drive through Aguada.

Needless to say, the drive was…interesting.  Roads were blocked off, forcing us to detour around (with no signs to tell us what roads we should be looking for on the detour.)  We stopped to ask police officers for directions approximately three times.  And then, as if that weren’t enough (that was just the beginning!) , there were the horses.  We probably saw at least 500 of the horses from the parade…being  ridden down the streets in groups of 2-10.  Cars and horses were not meant to share highways.  I don’t believe that horses, like pedestrians, should be given the right of way—but they certainly take it.  As darkness fell and we maneuvered between the traffic, it became harder to see the horses and riders—because of course almost no one was wearing reflective gear; that would be silly.

Our half hour drive took well over an hour, if not closer to two.  Eventually, though, we found our hotel, showered, ate at the poolside bar/restaurant, then collapsed exhausted into our beds around 10pm. 

Sunday was our day to sightsee.  We started on a quest for waterfalls (see “Finding Waterfalls” post).  Returning to Rincon around 2pm, we had a quick lunch of pinchos and empanadillas near Steps Beach, then began sightseeing (and our quest for a swimmable beach). 

Rincon is known for surfing—which means that most of the beaches there have good waves most of the time—which means that most of the beaches there are not good for swimming.

We tried Steps Beach first.  Not swimmable.  But we got some nice pictures on the steps!

Steps  Beach, Rincon

We tried the beach by the marina next, which is reputed to have good snorkeling.  Also too wavy.  

We headed for the lighthouse next, and spent some time in the park there, looking down at Domes Beach and the surfers there.  

El Faro (The Lighthouse)

Domes Beach

By this time, it was about 4:30.  Our original plan had been to watch the sunset from the lighthouse.  (Rincon, being on the west coast, is privy to stunning sunsets over the sea, which Guayama, being on the southeast coast, is not).  However, since sunset was still over an hour away, we decided to try once more for a swimming beach and wait there until sunset. 

We found Sandy Beach and stayed there.  Some rain clouds on the horizon blocked the sunset, but the sky still lit up with orange and gold and made for a beautiful sight.  I relaxed in my beach chair as Rachel and Kelsey played paddle ball in the dying light.

Sunset on Sandy Beach

Monday brought horseback riding on the beach in the morning (see Horseback Riding post), followed by a delicious meal.  Then we headed back to Crashboat Beach (minus the hoards of horses on the road this time), stayed there until sunset (once again blocked by billows of clouds!), and made the drive home.

None of us wanted the vacation to end as we neared Guayama—which is a sign of a most excellent vacation.

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