Thursday, July 24, 2008

San Juan, Puerto Rico

...has to be one of the friendliest places I have ever been! Our day started out like the previous 3; breakfast on the balcony overlooking the sea (don't hate me) getting dressed, and heading out to see what the day would bring. We had planned to get a rental car, drive to the rain forrest, then spend the afternoon at the Wyndham resort (The Rio Mar) since we would be in port until 11:00 tonight. Well, it didn't work out exactly as planned... but what ever does for us? We spent almost an hour sitting on the pier trying to sort out the rental car situation. Seems they were sending us a car from New Jersey rather than the local Enterprise... so we ended up grabbing a taxi. Mean while, Haley had to go to the bathroom (she ALWAYS has to go to the bathroom, little Robby, we have taken to calling her) and when I tried to cross the very busy street, every car just stopped to let us cross. Then, the taxi driver was beyond helpful, driving in circles practicaly to get us where we needed to be and waiting outside to make sure it was the right place while Ira went inside. He genuinely wished us well and to enjoy San Juan. The car rental guy was very helpful, felt so bad that the reservation got so messed up, he reimbursed us the taxi fee and we didn't even ask. He gave us maps, made sure we knew where we were going, very nice. We drove to this rain forrest (the hike was horrible and we saw 7 snails/slugs, jury is out on what they were exactly still, 4 geckos of assorted colors and a little mouse like animal... woo-hoo) to reach a final destination of a very cool, but very crowded water fall. Still an amazing opportunity to hike through a rain forest with the girls and work off some of those cruise-pounds we have eaten over the last few days! It did feel good to sweat and get some excercise.

After the rain forrest, we went to the resort across the street. Ira had called ahead and they over-nighted us a pass to use the facilities for free for the day. It is a gorgeous place and if you are ever considering San Juan as a destination, The Rio Mar is worth the trip! (It is a Wyndham resort/hotel) Amazing pools, walk right on to the beach, golf courses, tennis courts.. just incredible and so beautiful. We got a little lost on the trip home, but my amazing Spanish skills (I can ask for more than a beer and the bathroom, thank god!) and the continued kindness and English of the locals got us where we needed to be, in the taxi of a NY born driver, who brought us to the ship after dropping off the car. The one thing that I am leaving Puerto Rico with is the memory of how nice the people are. Everyone we ran into was so kind and willing to help a family of American tourists. I think it will make me think a little bit the next time some person with limited English asks me for help back home!

On to Saint Thomas and a little bit of shopping!


Aubree said...

while it didn't get off to a great start, sounds like the rest of your day was fun! can't wait to hear what tomorrow brings!

Nancy said...

Any Scrapbooking stores there?