Friday, July 31, 2009

Playa Boquerón

I'll add a narrative later. sorry about the video being sideways, don't know how to change that.

I don't care what time you say it is, I am on California time, three whole hours earlier, so buzz off.

P's first, very much anticipated taste of mofongo.


You can buy almost anything at stop lights. P opted for the quenepas.

The tongue is out; SS had a great time.

Que come SS?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

El Yunque Rainforest (Part II)

The guy in the brown shorts was jumping off the waterfall. He later helped me reach the waterfall, it was difficult to get under. Much to my surprise, even P struggled.

This is as far as I felt comfortable going with SS.

Right after the guy made sure I was steady and left, my legs gave upon me. The strain of descending with an extra 25 pounds did me in. My legs were shaking and weak. When P motioned for me to swim back, he realized that something was wrong, because I just could not move. He could not help me because he had SS. Still, it was such an amazing, happy experience. One of the best birthday presents ever.

It began to rain pretty hard as I was taking this picture. We moved our belongings (first was the good camera) under the small bridge.I was going to take pictures with my diaper bag camera, when I realized that I had left the dry bag at Abu's house.

People were going wild over SS's wetsuit. Strange, because people surf, dive, and go to the beach year round in P.R. I'm sure babies in wetsuits are common.

SS hamming it up for Baba. Why did I insist on carrying her up is beyond me.

SS enjoying a pineapple limber.

A very tired SS contemplating whether she wants to use the energy necessary to take a bite of her platanutre,

El Yunque Rainforest

This morning we headed out early for our much anticipated visit to El Yunque National Forest. I have wanted to visit EY since I was in first grade. Mami and Papi turned me down flat when I had the opportunity to go on a school field trip. They feared that I would get lost, and I give them a pass due to their age. The Abus' fear of such a beautiful place is baffling. A lot of people claim that children have been abducted there, although I can only recall one case. The Abus' cited cases of people getting lost for days. Sure, if you stray from the marked trails and have no sense of direction. They mounted a campaign to dissuade us from going before we even arrived. Abu went as far as insinuating that the park was closed. Nice try. P promised me that we would get there and he followed through. Other than our visit to Mami and Papi's grave, this is the most significant outing during our time here. It is something that I wanted to do with JJ and couldn't, I was not ready. Thankfully SS made it home in time to enjoy this with us.

We took the scenic route and that turned out to take much more time than anticipated. We planned on hiking several of the trails and take a dip along the waterfalls. That was an extremely ambitious plan and we will have to return. We arrived at noon, it rained during our first hike and that was it for us. We were bummed out, but intend on making it to the top of the El Yunque peak.

SS did very well and fell asleep as we were nearing the waterfall. You could actually hear the people and water below, and she just snoozed away. It appears that she is shutting out the stimuli by sleeping. Whatever works for our angel SS.

Out of shape people who strap twenty-five pounds of love to their back, and embark on a hike are insane.

Abu, don't listen to Baba,the Chupacabra is not real, and extraterrestrial beings do not cruise the forest for children to abduct.

SS's first encounter with a palm tree.

I have 25 pounds of love on my back.

SS demonstrating that the two landing naps were not a fluke. She can snooze during almost any difficult situation.

La Mina Falls. The place was packed, yet P managed to get a picture without a dozen heads.

The other side of the falls.

One would expect the noise to wake up SS.

Donde esta SS?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

La Guancha Boardwalk

SS had fun today even though she spent most of the day indoors. The Abus converted their backyard into a huge terrace, with a gazebo and many plants. It also has a roof, providing lots of shade. SS ran around to her heart's content and just chilled with the Abus.

SS was so relaxed and rested that this evening we ventured out for her first glimpse of La Guancha. We also thought it would be a good idea to let SS run around to burn some energy. All in an attempt to make bedtime easier. At one end of the boardwalk, we found a group of people doing aerobic exercise to music. In China, we saw people doing Tai Chi, ballroom dancing an plain exercising in the parks. All done very early in the morning. I never thought we would find evening outdoor aerobics in P.R. SS immediately got her groove on and tried to imitate the steps. When it got a bit difficult, she just resorted to creating her own choreography.

After SS's impromptu workout, we walked to the other end of the boardwalk. I had warned P that he would hear people referring to SS as "la Chinita," or little Chinese girl. We heard that a lot tonight. The first time, SS was walking a bit in front of us and a couple noticed her. The woman stated,"Look at la Chinita, she is beautiful." The man with her agreed and stated she was the most beautiful baby (dude, all mothers have the most beautiful baby). The woman then turned around and saw us. OMG, her face was priceless, that double look, and a third after SS called me Mama. There is a reason why people in Ponce recognize a Chinese child immediately. In a day or two, I will post something that will clear this up.

When we arrived at the end of the boardwalk, we found a group of young people dancing. Some of their moves were the break dancing type, and others like those boy bands have made popular. SS had a blast and danced her tiny buns off. She even tried to join them on the platform. We took video, but U Tube is not cooperating and keeps rejecting the upload.

P was curious about the drinking age here. I approached a young man who was cleaning a table outside and asked. His answer? "Whatever you want it to be." He explained that PR is not as strict as the US. He also stated that as long as minors have adult supervision, they are served alcohol. Good to know, if SS can't sleep, we'll knock her out with booze. But, we will make sure to supervise her. The funny thing is that vendors card and are really strict about tobacco. BTW, 18 is the legal drinking age.

We stopped at a kiosk next to where the DJs were playing salsa music. SS had an acerola juice and liked it. When I heard acerola, I had no clue what it was. It turns out that I grew up calling them cerezas. We had them at the very of back of our back yard when I was a child. SS also had her first taste of an empanadilla. Her Puerto Rican side came out and SS added another food item I can't cook to her list of favorites. We enjoyed ourselves and are looking forward to visiting during the day.

SS putting her doll to sleep in the hammock. We really need to get her an Asian doll.

Relaxing with Abuelo.

SS insisted on climbing the steps, and made it to the top of the lookout tower on her own power.

Yes, it was windy at the top.

Don't know what an acerola is, but it is surely tasty.

This is just plain wrong. A Piña Colada topped with a cookie, sprinkles and a heart shaped lolly pop.

It did not stop P from sucking away once the offensive decor was removed.

I quickly got over the garish garnishing.

Yummy empanadilla de carne.