Saturday, March 27, 2010

Spring Break - Alabama

After spending the most of the last 2 days in a car, I took some time this afternoon to walk around the farm . The weather is good; we woke up to 37 degrees this morning but by this afternoon it was up to the low 70's. The wind was blowing almost gusting at times as I looked for interesting things to photograph.

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I loved the bird house by the front field.

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The blueberry bushes are budding. I hope they bloom before we leave Friday.

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An abandoned beehive, I found several behind the old shed.

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The Barn.

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One of the back fields.

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Farm equipment.

The pictures are a little washed out but the sun was going down. I'm hoping tomorrow I can get some morning shots and maybe walk out to the back field. It is a treat to see spring in action.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

20th Wedding Anniversary: Puerto Rico Part 3



We slept in on the 18th and being our anniversary, neither one of us was in a hurry to get up. My legs and feet were still aching from all the walking the day before. We fortified our selves with the last of the bananas in our room and headed back into San Juan.



Hubby wanted to go back to Sigal XX for breakfast and again we were not disappointed. I had and egg and cheese omelet with the Puerto Rican version of toast and freshly squeezed orange juice. Yes I said freshly squeezed. Hubby watched the waiter squeeze the oranges. The juice was a little tart but excellent.



Our failure in finding Don Q the day before, we decided to visit the Bacardi Distillery. It was not easy to find and after a few wrong turns we finally located the front gate. By noon I was feeling very happy. I love Rum. The tour was very informative and the last part of the tour included a mixed drink demonstration. I wish I had taken notes because my rum spiked brain retained very little. Hunger drove us back to San Juan and I know this is hokey but we decided to eat lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe. We had to pick up the glasses for our collection and t-shirts for the girls. We cut our trip short because of a back ache and headed back to the Villa.



I had nightmares all night worrying about hubby's back. All night I went over our emergency plan. We would get up, quickly pack and find the nearest massage therapist. Thankfully he woke up feeling much better. I was so happy and relieved because there was so much we still wanted to see. We said our good byes to Carole and thanked her for a wonderful time. I really hated leaving.



We found a place to eat breakfast in Rio Grande called Antojitos. It was a very pretty restauraunt. The atmosphere was awesome unfortunately the food was not. It was average at best and the service was slow. After eating at Siglo XX, I was very disappointed. The family next to us raved about the food. I guess I should have ordered pancakes.





We hurried back towards San Juan but this time we took the beach road - PR187 back. I still had a few gits to purchase and pictures to take but the clock was ticking. We had to be at the airport by 5pm.



The traffic was hideous. There were school children and school buses every where. I have to mention that I love the school busesin Puerto Rico. We had a terrible time getting to the parking lot but once we were back on the street we caught a trolley and headed to Fort San Felipe De Morro.





We spent a beautiful afternoon taking pictures at the fort. We took dozens of pictures the place was awesome. It was windy and overcast and several times it threatened to rain but we kept going up to the last minute. It sprinkled a little as we rode back to our car in the trolley but had passed by the time we pulled up to the airport. We had a lovely trip and I really enjoyed myself but next time we will definitely stay longer.

Monday, March 15, 2010

20th Wedding Anniversary: Puerto Rico Part 2



I loved waking up in the morning to the cool breeze that blew through the window of our room. I am still amazed at how cool is was in the mountains yet not too chilly to bathe once you get past the cricket that resided near the drain. We dressed and were off fairly early headed towards San Juan, the main objective for the morning was to trade in our rental car. The Suzuki we rented was too small and we were tearing up the brakes running up and down the mountains. Enterprise was very cooperative and we were in Old San Juan in no time.



As we drove in to the Old City we ran into heavy Rescue and Law Enforcement presence. I still don't know what was going on that day at the Capital - Google has failed me on this one. Traffic was backed up a little but as we passed the convention area it eased up until we reached the old city.



The streets of the old city are narrow and steep. Living in Florida for so long I expected an island of flat sandy beaches like the Bahamas but Old San Juan is anything but level. And finding parking on the narrow streets was impossible but with the help of the local policia we found a parking garage and a Starbucks. Life is good again for a short while. I have discovered that I am truly a flat foot. I can spend an afternoon walking through the mall, Walmart, Sam's, etc with no problem. I have spent entire days at Universal Studios keeping up with my teenage daughters. Granted my feet hurt afterwards but this was nothing compared to the extraordinary cramps I felt in me ankles and calves trying to walk up the steep hills and stairs of the city. It became worse as we toured the fort.



Castillo San Cristobal is beautiful but I rested the first hour of our tour. Fred hiked out onto the north east section of the fort while I enjoyed the company of the local iguanas. Other tourist kept me entertained chasing these poor creatures all over the front lawn of the fort. I am amazed no one was bit.



The view out onto the ocean and across San Juan was awesome. You can see the capital to the east and to the south the docks for the cruise ships. The court yard of the fort was old but well kept and quite fascinating. It was easy to find subjects to take decent pictures and I took a bunch.





Hunger finally lured us away from the fort and again we found the local policia and were given directions to an Italian restaurant that was suppose to be good. Thankfully we went with hubby's instincts and found and authentic Puerto Rican deli called Siglo XX. We were thinking S/20 aka crazy so we ate there. We later found out it actually translates to 20th century. The food was awesome. There where vegetables on my plate that I did not recognize but it was delicious.



Full and content after a few medalla lights, we decided to head towards Ponce and try to find the Don Q Rum facility that I had seen on a Three Sheets episode. We headed south on PR52 nothing like an adventure which is what it turned out to be. We had to cross the Cordillera Mountains and made good time into Ponce. The Mountains were pretty but hazy and it was tough taking pictures at 60 mph.



I love my Iphone but I have learned GPS is not all its cracked up to be. I located the Don Q family home on the internet but later learned that the distillery and home place were to different locations and that there were no tours of the distillery. We did not find either one after looking for almost an hour so we decided to head back to Rio Grande. I really should have paid more attention to the Three Sheets episode on Puerto Rico. I'll know better next time.

Part 3 to follow.