A Tropical, Topical Itch



I may be addicted to blogging.  It’s 3:45 a.m. and here I am siting in bed writing because I can’t sleep.  It’s too hot in this room because the air conditioning is off because it gets too cold and I can’t open a window because our room is hermetically sealed from the outside and the wonderful tropical breezes are not to be enjoyed tonight.  Or this a.m.

So, having spent the last hour composing a blog entry in my mind, I decided to turn on the computer and write much to my husband’s dismay although it appears he has managed to get back to sleep.

What about this trip anyway?  One of the main benefits was that we were unplugged from the “outside” world for two weeks.  And I may be ready to continue that existence.  I mean really.  Today we arrived at the Sheraton Old San Juan to meet up with our captain, first mate and fellow crew members Pat and Richard.  We learn that Anthony Weiner apparently just entered the hall of the shamed and might I suggest really, really stupid men by Twittering pictures of himself to women who found him disgusting enough to “expose” him.  Now, really, my life was happier not knowing this.  Ray explained to me that he is a man before he is a Congressman.  Well, that says it all.  But, really, you would think that a man that “rose” to that level of accomplishment in life would have seen what happened to any number of his colleagues and decided that maybe if he did that…he would be caught and that the fallout might be a little bit more that he would like to endure.  Like it might ruin his life.

But I digress.  We met up with our boat mates and had dinner at a place called Dragon Fly.  I really liked their logo.  But my heart was back in the rain forest where the hillside cafe had Puerto Rican music playing rather than techno disco that was so loud we couldn’t talk until we asked them to turn the music down, there was no view as we were packed like sardines at a table about the size of half a door long perched on high chairs in a dark windowless cavern.  Very trendy.  We had a great time…but my heart was in the rain forest.

While in Puerto Rico, we saw no skunks, opossums, raccoons.  What we did we were dogs, chickens, guinea hens, cows…very happy cows.  Much happier than CA cows in my estimation because they were grazing in fields of green stuff as high as their cows’ eyes.  A beautiful thing to witness.  I always feel sorry for our cows.  Very little shade, using their copious lips to ferret out morsels of green grass in the rainy season and stubble the rest of the time.

Oops, I digressed again.  May be the time of day.  Anyway we jet back to L.A. via a three hour stop over in Atlanta armed with our cortisone cream and a dermatologist appointment for Ray on Thursday as that coral scrape rash  is not going away..  He still needs to make a dental appointment.  Did I mention that on the cruise he lost a major portion of a major tooth?   It appears he will be allowed to keep his toe as of this date.  Me, I’m ok.  The bug bites are slowly disappearing and I’m waiting to see what the Dr. will treat Ray with for the coral scrape.  He called today for the appointment and the phone answerer who is usually a bit cold and unfriendly in this particular office exclaimed, “Oh, Dr. will be really interested to see you.  This will give him something besides skin cancer to look at!”.  Ray responded that it might be interesting to the Dr., but for him, not so much.

If you are interested in what our mainland roads might end up like if we don’t raise taxes, you owe yourself a visit to Puerto Rico.  Huge potholes.  Disappearing  lines that are designed to keep one car from hitting another car by delineating lines to stay within.  And the drivers here are unique.  They make CA drivers look thoughtful and considerate.  People merge from odd places, drive often times in the middle of a two lane road leaving us in the bushes, honk incessantly and stop to visit with pedestrians when the mood strikes them.  Having driven around one quarter of the island, the back roads are much more interesting but nonetheless just as dangerous.  On the back roads you see roadside vendors with their fresh grown fruit and veggies, smoothie stands, families walking together along the side of the road.  And they don’t need lawnmowers here.  Just a good machete to whack the green stuff that grows like weeds (could they be?).  Oh, Deere.  They really don’t need nurseries here because if you went and bought a 6-pack of impatiens, you’d be drowning in them in no time.  They are every where.  They grow like weeds.

And get this.  We went to the rain forest and it only rained once for about 45 minutes.  Our friends stayed in San Juan and it poured.  Go figure.  The weather is like the drivers of P.R.  Unpredictable.

Well, Glenda the GPS got us to the Dollar car rental return location and we were crammed into a van with too many other people and then sat squished up while we hurried to a traffic jam that went on and on.  Ray was getting twitchy but we obviously made it.  What’s going on is that President Obama visits P.R. in a week and so the people are sprucing the place up.  Trees being planted, flowers placed in meridians, curbs given a fresh can of paint.  And all this is occurring on the route to and from the airport where I’m sure they will take him.  And that’s the same route we were using so that was the reason for the big jam.  They seem excited and annoyed that he is coming.  They are impressed that a sitting President is visiting but annoyed, I think, that he will only stay four hours.  That’s very limited access but, hey, it’s better than no access at all.

So, here we are, zooming through the sky with no idea where we are because the whole country is covered in clouds which stretch out before us to the horizon.  Let’s see, we’ve been in the air three hours now starting out from Atlanta.  Where would that put us?  Our flight is about 4 1/2 hours.  New Mexico perhaps?  or are we further north, Colorado.  Well, we can rule out CA.  It is taking forever to get back to the golden state.

Ray is reading and I’m pecking at this keyboard to stave off boredom.  Ah, ha.  The clouds are breaking up and the flight attendants are gathering empty containers and Ray’s wine soaked napkin that he used to wipe off his seat after I knocked the dregs of a glass over onto HIS seat.  OMG.  There are a few lights down there.  It’s 9:09 Pacific time and the horizon is a beautiful orange red which contrasts nicely with the dark blue black earth.  Oh, well.  Whatever.  We’ll be there before you know it and then home tomorrow and then on the road north and then home again and then on the road south and then home again and then off to Australia and New Zealand and then home and it will all go so fast…but we will be richer for the experience and poorer for the expenses!!

There exists such a love-hate relationship with travel.  Lines, searches, haggling with the airlines, nailing down the car rental, navigating the unfamiliar.  And then there is the thrill of meeting wonderful people, seeing beautiful vistas, learning something new about a part of the world you don’t occupy all the time.  It is mind expanding is so many ways.  But I state the obvious.  That I am sure is why we all do it.

And may I recommend spa music on the airline dial?  I’ve got a headset and am tuned into Spa (one of the choices under music) and it is all musical and relaxing and melodious.  Enjoying it very much.  I’m listening to William Eaton, Ascending Cloud at the moment.  Very nice.  Now Weinburg and Beck performing Tranquility.  Such a good choice instead of Headline News or Sports.   Relaxing and soothing.  Check me into a spa!!

I’ve got some pictures.  Here they are.

Rain forest pictures.  Ray is standing up at the restaurant and next to that picture is a picture from our room.   I’m standing in front of the falls and a snail (very big)

Guina hens in the road and an interesting sign in Old San Juan.

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