I Heart Puerto Rico

(If you don’t like vacation recaps, you’ll want to skip this entry.)
John and Me

John planned the best vacation for us at the island he’s been calling home every five weeks over the last year for work. Aside from our honeymoon in Branson (no lie) it was the first real vacation we’ve taken by ourselves in the eight years we’ve been together.

I was completely spoiled. He made all of our hotel arrangements at the Intercontinental-San Juan and got us an 11-story view of the ocean.

The View from Our Balcony

Our agenda included a lot of water time, so we sat on the beach or in the pool
John in the Pool

and let hotel staff bring us snacks, mojitos and gin and tonics for three days straight.

John drove us all over the island including to the beach at Pinones,
The Beach at Pinones

where hutty-like pubs served crushed fried plantain mixed with shrimp and crab and coconut milk right out of freshly hacked shells.

We sea kayaked at night through an ocean bay, a canal and then into a lagoon (those hundreds of canoe trips on the Spring River paid off) to see Bio-bay, one of the few places on earth where bioluminescent creatures light up the water. When we ran our hands and paddles through the water it sparkled, and you know how I love sparkly things. Sitting in the middle of the lagoon at night watching fish streak through the water like lightening flashes was freaky cool. I was a little nervous about kayaking into a lagoon at night (Do snakes hang from Mangrove trees? Is there a Dengue-fever-toting-mosquito with my name on it?), but we made it home without any natural traumas.

And the casino in our hotel sparkled, too! John doesn’t gamble and I don’t much either, but when I walked passed a little slot machine called “Fairy’s Fortune,” did I really have a choice? I set a limit of 10.00 per night to spend on slots (I never spent that much. Still came home down a dollar, which is why John doesn’t gamble), and after three nights in a row I got a blister on my thumb (the slot machine was a touch screen). I refer to my newly discovered syndrome as “Fairy Finger.”
Fairy Finger

(In my best Britney voice) Old San Juan is really old y’all! El Morro, the fort that has guarded San Juan Bay since 1539 was incredible.

Cannon Ramp

And since John studied military architecture in high school I had a cute AND well-informed guide.
John as Docent

All that sun, the water, the incredibly friendly people, and the best sweetie to see it all with–Puerto Rico totally gets a Fairy Finger Thumbs Up! I would have dreaded coming home except John used his frequent flier miles to book first class seats for us!

More pics here.

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12 Comments on “I Heart Puerto Rico”

  1. bigskymind Says:

    I’m trying really hard not to be too jel. What a fabulous vacation! You and John look so happy in the photos. Kayaking at night would scare me to death, but it sounds so beautiful, other worldly. I love vacation recaps!

  2. Jennie Says:

    What a dream! Those pictures are amazing. I love that you got a blister from the touch screen.

  3. Susan Says:

    Great pictures….I can almost smell the salty air and feel the sand. I love sparkly, but not sure I would conquer my fears of the sea at night time. Yikes! Love the blister.

  4. Howard Says:

    Wow cuz, the pictures look great! I’m jealous! The Bio-Bay must have been too cool. We just got back from a weekend at the Buffalo River, but that does not compare.

  5. Troy Says:

    The Buffalo has its own unique charms and lots of them. I miss floating it in the fall . Though I really did almost get a snake in my canoe on that river, right before we fell over.

  6. Kara Says:

    Your pictures make me want to go too….I think we need to plan a family reunion cruise!

  7. Troy,
    Glad you had a good time! How was the design there? Can we look forward to a future post on Good Home?

  8. Troy Says:

    David, Old San Juan had some sweet apartment buildings and I might post them, but rural domestic architecture we saw was more non-aesthetic than designed, basic box shelters, nothing to blog home about. Our hotel had some nice 60s swank touches. I’ll see if I can dig them up.

  9. Anne and I too loved Puerto Rico and want to go back soon. I’m glad John got you to do the bio-bay. We loved doing that, expect the paddling back–I got tired and we kept running into the damn trees. We did a great snorkel trip too–the water was just so crystal clear, warm, and inviting!

  10. Troy Says:

    I know what you mean Rachel. That trip back is kind of long . But it helped me work off some of the Mofongo that I’d been eating! I wanted to snorkel, but we didn’t. Next time maybe. You’ll have to give us the “where tos” for when we go back.

  11. crystal Says:

    i can’t beleive you got a blister from gambling.
    and i never knew puerto rico was that breathtaking.
    and while i am not a lover of any huge body of water, i will say those pictures make the ocean seem tolerable. of course, tolerable, in my book is me not being in it, on it, or near it…but to look at…it makes me almost forget my fear.

  12. Troy Says:

    Crystal, don’t think I didn’t have my tsunami emergency plan worked out before I ever stepped onto the beach.

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