This was, I think, the first time I was anywhere without family of my own to care for for more than a week. Once more, I was surrounded by women for 12 days whereas I’ve been living with only men and boys for 25 years. Syd’s husband was around, but it was mainly my friend and the 24 year old funnier than anything young women. They had grown up in a home without men, so privacy was a concept not a practice.
Every day was filled with exploration, fun, laughter and great food. My favorite day was probably the worst one in regard to the weather. It was rainy and windy. We had a golf cart that day and went to the south end of the island (above) as well as many other stops.
The food blogger had recommended the restaurant shown above in blue and red with the laundry hanging above on the open second floor. He said to go on Sunday and get the seafood soup that is only made on that day. It was so ramshackle that had I not already been adjusted to seeing eateries in part of someone’s home or so small that they only had two or three tables and not been so impressed with each recommendation thus far, I probably would have opted to drive on by.
It was the cold and rainy day, so we all decided to try the soup. It was the best bowl of heaven I have ever had. Lobster, conch, shrimp, squid, fish in the most delectable broth. I know it doesn’t sound all that great, but it was the only place we visited twice while I was there (there are more great places to eat than anywhere I have ever been) so we only wanted to keep trying more places and they totally let me choose day after day. I am positive I have never in my life gone so long without making a meal and they were all great meals. At home, we tend to not like to go out as most times we eat better at home than can be found in the restaurants. Not the case on the island.
We had whole grilled fish fresh from the boat caught that same day.
Incredible ceviche. When everything is fresh that day, it just takes seafood to a whole new level.
A Poblano pepper stuffed with eggs and potatoes for brunch one day. Breakfast was usually eaten in the hotel as part of our deal.
Enchilada Suiza’s from Rene & Rene’s cafe. One of those small places with maybe 4 tables and the best host on the island. Rene made everyone feel welcome and well cared for.
And of course we tried tacos from several places – each different and all fresh and tasty. The garlic cream sauce in one of them is something I have been working on creating for friends here as it is oh so yummy.
We would sometimes go to the docks in the evening where the local men would fish with nets to catch small fish near shore and bait their hooks with the small fish and throw their lines out and fish for barracuda and larger fish. They had no poles, they would swing the line out like a lasso as far as they could and pull it in by hand. One evening, the gentleman in the photo above pulled in a tuna-like three foot long fish that was so strong he had to beach it to bring it in.
I probably thought I was going to be spending a decent amount of time on my own so they could all just have family time uninterrupted but we had such a great time all together that I really did spend most of my time with them. They never treated me as an intrusion and was allowed to share freely in all activities, conversations, stories and food. They gave me flack when I did something ridiculous and took it back when I was on the giving end.
We snorkeled around the island many times and saw really great fish and sting rays, but when Lalo took us out with their diving company to the reef, it was truly amazing. We saw sea turtles and gazillions of different fish. It also didn’t hurt that the guy who was part of the couple that went out with us looked just like Fabio from romance novel fame.
We really did have just the most amazing time and there are so many little stories that I can recall. Had I had this platform then, you would have all been regaled with tons more stories. It is great when you come back from such a trip and there are a myriad of words and phrases that are now attached to fond memories.
Thank you B, J, S & L for showing me around, letting me hang out and being your wonderful selves around me the entire time.
The photo below is another reminder and fun story for another time.