|Steve, Anne and Chris on the trail.|
|Steve, upper left, looking over the forest.|
El Yunque is a finalist in the New Seven Wonders of Nature competition and you can vote or just check out the other finalists here.
We left Ponce, but not until almost 0800, as we were just going 7 miles offshore to an island called Caja de Muertos, literally Box of the Dead or Coffin Island. Supposedly, the island looks like a man laid out ready for burial, hands clasped on his chest. I didn't see it, I guess maybe if you squinted. Anyway, the island is a park, run by the DNR and they have these great boats that say "Vigilantes" down the side. I know that in the US the term vigilante has a bad connotation but here is just means watchman or caretaker. We went on blistering hot hike up the hill to the old lighthouse, the views of the island and of Puerto Rico in the distance were spectacular.
Today we spent the morning at the Hermanos Santiago Cash and Carry, a case lot warehouse. We took our two wheel cart and stocked up on spaghetti sauce, beer and snickers, all the important things in life. A man stood and watched us, outside the warehouse, packing our backpacks and cart, deciding what we could hand carry, then he motioned us over and around the side of the store. He had an ancient van into which he loaded us and all our purchases. He didn't seem to speak any English and we weren't sure exactly where we were headed, but we must have looked like boat people and he dropped us off at the marina. I spent the ride thinking of all the things I'd have bought if I'd known we were going to get a lift back. That's how shopping is now: how much does it weigh and how far do we have to walk.
|Mr Mac enjoying the shade.|
|Tonight's spectacular sunset over the hills.|
We're working our way slowly along the south coast of Puerto Rico. It's slow going east because of the trade winds that pick up every morning and blow steadily west the rest of the day. This is a really easy way to cruise, a kind of forced rest period for a big part of each day. We get up really early, go about 20 miles, drop the anchor, have breakfast, check out the town, go for a walk, nap, read, watch the sunset. At least that's my day. Those of you who know Steve, know he has his project list(s) and he manages to check off something every day, while still doing all of the above.
Tomorrow we're on to Ponce, the second largest city, and maybe a little provisioning and inland touring.
Kind of a special day of sorts as we dug out the next small scale chart for the Caribbean Sea—Eastern Part. We’d moved completely through the Key West to San Juan chart since January and risked falling off the edge of the earth, or the saloon table in this case, if we didn’t do something. As you can see, it is as big as the saloon table if we chose not to fold, staple, or otherwise mutilate in order to see and use just what is necessary and still get around the boat. Key west to San Juan doesn’t look nearly this “clean”, lots of marks, plots, and yes folds…gasp. We also are out of the neat little chart-books so popular in the US and have had to resort to our well used…not so much by us yet…Imray-Iolair black and white reprint charts. Thank you Fred!