Sunday, February 11, 2007

Saturday 10th February

Puerto del Rey
Puerto Rico

18 17.4 N
65 37.7 W


We had arranged to meet Dale and Lorie at 08.00hrs, a cruel joke really as neither Lorie nor I like to get out of bed early. Well we were on time and 15 minutes later our friends turned up. Our plans for the day were to visit El Morro, one of the forts in Old San Juan and then to go to the Bacardi factory to do the tour there. We arrived in Old San Juan, crawling along with the tourist traffic and found a parking space in a place which I’m certain we weren’t meant to park but which was a short walk to the fort entrance. Prior to entering the fort Lorie and I decided that we would need to go to the toilet so we headed off down the hill to the restrooms which were located inside the gift shop. When we arrived there the ladies toilet was being serviced so the male attendant of the shop told us that there was no one in the men’s toilet and we could use that. Girls – there was plenty of toilet paper! The reason I’m telling this is that both Lorie and I were greatly amused by the location of the hot air hand driers, one was at normal height and the second one was at the level of your crotch. As women we can only speculate on what you men use this “BLOW DRIER” for! And neither Gerry nor Dale would give us an answer we could live with. Having finished with the toilet saga, we paid our entry fee for the fort and proceeded to tour El Morro – a large Spanish fort dating back to the 1500’s. The remains of the fort are quite remarkable and you can imagine how huge it was when it existed in its entirety. We hit the high spots and the made our way down to the second to bottom level – it seemed like a million steps, we decided against going right to the bottom as the climb back up would have been too painful in the heat of the midday sun. After cooling off with some iced water we headed back to the car and the blissful air conditioning. The next hour was spent weaving our way out of the Old San Juan streets which were packed with tourists, cars and boy scouts by the million – apparently there was a Scout Jamboree of some sort there. Once clear of the narrow cobbled streets we took the freeway to the Bacardi rum factory. Dale and Lorie are regulars there and directed us to the ticket booth, pointed out the bar and then accompanied us on the tour of the facility. The tour was interesting but I was surprised that it didn’t include the actual processing plant, when we have toured winerys the processing plant has always been part of the tour. We learnt that every Bacardi bottle has the company logo on it – have a look at your next bottle, it’s a bat. Apparently the logo is meant to symbolize family unity, good luck and prosperity. Once we had completed the tour it was time for the free samples, each person gets 2 and you can pick what you want of the range of products. Lorie and I scored an extra ticket each – some one had dropped theirs and we were the lucky finders! Dale limited his drink as he was the driver (well some one has to be and we were very grateful it was Dale!)
Back in the car and we were on a mission first to get some food and then to find a new vacuum bagger as ours gave up the ghost when we tried to use it on the inverter. We went to a huge shopping center and had subway sandwiches in the food hall then went to Sears where we found just the thing we needed. Purchases done we began our trip home, with a stop at a computer store where Dale treated himself to some new surround sound speakers for the TV. One other stop at a gift shop for a memento and then we had the hard decision – where to go for dinner. Lolita’s, the Mexican restaurant we ate at a few nights ago was close to hand so we all agreed that it would be a good place to stop and have an early dinner. Full to bursting we then hit the road one last time and Dale dropped Gerry and I off at the marina with plans to call on the VHF in the morning.



Blogger Cardwell's Corner said...

Good to hear that you have finally met up with Dale and Laurie. Hope the winds are more favorable from now on! We are in Colorado in the snow and having fun skiing whenever we want. Take care and fair winds! Happy Valentine's Day!

8:47 a.m.  

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