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Indiana, United States
Debt free empty nesters...ready to stretch our wings. Life is good and we plan on making it even better. This blog is mostly about our trips to Vieques Puerto Rico, with a few odds and ends thrown in about our life after the mortgage.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Last Day on the Island

I woke up at 5am, started coffee, ate breakfast and listened to the roosters in the dark. Can you tell I've slipped into a groove here? Lorrie was up an hour later (she's into her groove too).

We decided to arrive at Orchid an hour later today, thinking we would miss the "no-see-ums". When we arrive at Orchid my windsock is limp as a (use whatever noun you want here). No wind at all. Lorrie looks at me all "doe-eyed". We might as well unload anyway, I say. So unload we do and in the process we get swarmed again. It's 9am but the no-see-ums don't care. I head for the water. Lorrie heads for the Jeep. About 30 mins later the wind picks up and they're gone like that.

A few days ago Lorrie said that 10am is the witching hour, meaning that's when the early beach goers arrive (we're in a totally different class). She was right because about 10:15 our first couple showed up. By one o'clock the beach will be about as full as it's going to get for the day. It's almost one now and there are only 12 people on the beach, about 50% less than last week. The water today is the calmest we've seen in two weeks, hardly any waves. A lot of people head out to snorkel. Lorrie and I are content to just stay on the beach and people watch. After two weeks I've become quite the expert at spotting rookie mistakes in beach site preparation, especially if they bring an umbrella. I'll say 3/4 seem never get it to work. First they never put enough effort into planting the main stake for the umbrella. They just kinda poke it into the sand and voila, instant shade. Usually within 10-15 minutes the umbrella is seen rolling down the beach front. Umbrella recovered, they create a little mountain of sand around the pole. Ten minutes later the umbrella is seen rolling down the beach again. Now they see that the stack is not nearly deep enough in the sand. So...they pivot the pole back and forth trying to work it deeper. Some just try pushing it deeper. Never works. I watched an older couple fight they're umbrella for over an hour. The lady would stand there, like a cat, waiting to pounce on the umbrella when it would come loose, which it did repeatedly. Finally I couldn't stand it anymore and I grabbed my shovel (it's actually an arched stick with a wide, blade type end that works quite well as a shovel). I offered my services, using my two cabanas as proof of my qualifications. I dug a hole about a foot deeper then screwed the threaded end of the pole into the sand. It's been over an hour and the umbrella is still up. Lorrie and I start timing how long it takes different peoples umbrellas to pull up out of the sand. We watch different people get suited up for snorkeling, getting a chuckle out of the ones who put their fins on out of the water, then proceed to "duck walk" forward into the water (just like we did on our first trip). You can tell the veterans, they put there's on in the water and walk backwards.

Lorrie just told me she's not wearing jeans home tomorrow. She said she's not giving in. Maybe I'll wear my Nevados and no socks. Spending two weeks on Vieques sure makes a big difference. We've really been able to sync with the rhythm of the island this time, even with Orchid. We've spent almost every day @ Orchid. We've grown use to the ebb and flow of the visitors and become quite comfortable hanging out in Casa Corona each day.

Lorrie and I walk over to the east side of Orchid, past the rocky point. I wanted to show Lorrie all the different tidal pools. While we were there we found a number of the shells that the land crabs like.

 The balanced rocks on Orchid are like magnets, drawing people to them. Most can't stand the temptation to touch and then the magic is broken. Many fumble for a few minutes, trying to recreate what usually can't exist again. Lorrie and I are walking around the eastern point now and I balance rocks along the way. We make our way around the point and get a look out into  Ensenada Honda. The water color didn't look real. I'm sitting here writing this outside Casa Corona.

I can see, in the distance, one of the rocks I balanced high up on a prominent point. I like the way it looks.

Over to the west I can see the three rocks I put out almost 2 weeks ago staring at me like sentinels.

There's a sailboat off in the distance. All you can see is the brilliant white reflected off its sail. The waves are breaking on shore with a cadence we've grown accustomed to. And that's it. That's what it's all about.

People ask us "What do you do in Vieques?" You stare out into the ocean sometimes finding a kind of peace that's indescribable.

Huesta Luego, Vieques

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