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Yumacoa, Puerto Rico!

Submitted by eagle on Fri, 06/14/2019 - 20:12

Kept walking!

Now in the charming town of Yumacoa, set among the mountains. The people here are friendly. There are gorgeous trees, including tons of mango trees. There are so many mango trees, as soon as I finish eating some mangoes, I encounter another tree and can load up again!

I think that Puerto Ricans speak fast. They have some different vocabulary than other Spanish-speaking regions, and a funny sing-song accent.


Now walking south, towards the coast, then probably follow the ocean westward.

Rock & Roll!

Shopping in Humacao

Submitted by eagle on Thu, 06/13/2019 - 16:00

Puerco Rito?

After thinking of going to Caguas for the variety - mountains instead of more coast - I'm switching my thinking to leaning towards the beach. Why climb up a sizable mountain for Caguas? It doesn't sound that appealing to me. I'd go for a more motivating destination, but from what I've seen so far, the city and its surroundings don't seem that different from what I already know. For now, I'm leaning towards just carrying on around the coast.


Did a sizable (for me) shop. After a while out in low population areas, had a chance to pick up some long-neglected items. Now have a laptop bag with functional zippers. Also, a tent! Of course, with so much more weight (I also bought groceries), my carry case is now breaking! Not sure yet how to fix that.


Today, walked from the shopping areas at the edge of town into the center of Humacao. It's a somewhat scenic college town. Puerto Rico continues to remind me of a mix of the continental US with Cuba, which I guess it is.


I'm now thinking of spending an extra day or so in Humacao, then walking along the coast. I can get to the central mountain valley later, from the other (northern) side, if I feel like it. However, this is probably my only chance to see this section of the coast. Also, I feel much more like going for a beach stroll than hiking up a mountain now.


I'm starting to renormalize. Feeling more like a person in a developed country again. After Cuba, I had to fix up banking, clothing, etc. Still working on it, and of course while adventure traveling one always feels extraordinary!


Humacao Days!

Submitted by eagle on Wed, 06/12/2019 - 11:30

Deciding where to go next. Yes, after just arriving and hardly having seen this place!


Options, the two main ones, include: Caguas, in the central mountains of the island, or follow the coast. I generally prefer beach, and do not particularly feel like a huge mountain climb, but Caguas may be a more interesting destination.


It looks like May is a big rainfall month, at least in Caguas. Not sure yet about the rest of the island.


Caguas seems like a sort of boring, medium-sized city. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caguas%2C_Puerto_Rico)


The coast looks pretty, although also somewhat boring. Menudo filmed a movie here.


The distances are small, that's one (more) nice thing about Puerto Rico!


Thirty kilometers to Caguas.


234 m x 3 = 702 ft


Less than a thousand feet of elevation.


The coastal route would be more for the scenery, rather than for any towns.


The central mountain valley route would be more for the city, rather than for the mountains.


Right now I'm sort of split.


It's actually kind of practical not to have phone service. It doesn't distract me so much, and half the time I have no battery anyways.


Camped out last night in a grassy area overlooking the city.


Woke up early today!


I'm now leaning somewhat more towards the mountain route, because I plan to see so much of the beach anyways.


Shopping to do today, after a while out in the boonies!

Nassau Monday

Submitted by eagle on Tue, 06/11/2019 - 17:58

Another day in Bahamas…


Breakfast today: corned beef and grits. With flies and a dog hanging about.


<grits pix>


Deciding whether to try extending my stay in Bahamas beyond Nassau, or carry on…


I'd forgotten some of the rigors of traveling… The difficulty in finding essentials like food, water, bathrooms… The sudden big decisions… The freedom!


A few restaurants around town advertise barracuda: "Eat at your own risk." Barracuda consume fish, accumulating a toxin from their reef food chain. The symptoms include reversal of hot and cold feelings, and more harmful symptoms, which can last for decades!


Just a few days ago, I was in the USA. Now I'm in a different country, having walked and taken boats over some distance… Looking back, how quickly things can turn!



Ciguatera is a disease that you can get from eating fish such as barracuda. In Nassau, they advertised it as "eat at your own risk." The disease can last for twenty years!

Ciguatera poisoning is underrecognized and underreported; up to 50,000 cases occur globally every year. The incidence in travelers to highly endemic areas has been estimated as high as 3 per 100.


From <https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2018/the-pre-travel-consultation/food-poisoning-from-marine-toxins>

After recovering from ciguatera poisoning, patients may want to avoid any fish, nuts, alcohol, or caffeine for at least 6 months as they may cause a relapse in symptoms.


From <https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2018/the-pre-travel-consultation/food-poisoning-from-marine-toxins>


Nassau again

Submitted by eagle on Tue, 06/11/2019 - 17:57

Another day in Nassau, Bahamas!


Today, went shopping. Got Bahamian change…


<Bahamas $ pix>


Nassau has these water dispensers available around town.


<water pix>


There are a handful of American shops.


<US pix>


One thing I like is seeing the different car names they have here. One thing that's not as convenient as in the US is the absence of public restrooms here. The US fast food shops have ones though, which seem even better than in the US.


Nassau has tons of dogs, and a few cats…


It's a small but interesting country…



Submitted by eagle on Tue, 06/11/2019 - 17:56



Quite a first day in Nassau!


Arrived on the overnight mailboat from Bimini…


It's funny to see tall buildings on such a small island.


<port pix>


Came in at the port!


<pix port>


Walking along the restaurants by the water, had a breakfast of pig's feet souse. Fresh off the boat, I ask what is pig's feet souse. She asks if I've ever tried chicken souse. It turns out to be a stew containing allspice and other flavors.


<souce pix>


Later in the day, ate mutton curry at a Jamaican place, then steam chicken at a Haitian place.


The food here, which is tasty, seems to get stuck in one's teeth, so I think of it as "flossing food."


For some reason, Chinese and Greek stuff seems popular in Nassau. I've already lost track of how many Chinese restaurants I've seen here, along with Chinese traditional medicine and more.


The people here generally seem friendly, it has a small town feel. I like the architecture, small colorful buildings. Tons of music, which I feel comes out of the streets as in New Orleans. The weather is of course nice, it's the Caribbean!



First daze!

Submitted by eagle on Tue, 06/11/2019 - 17:56

I'm on the road again!!!!!!!!! :)

Well, not quite the road, more like water!

Now in the Bahamas… As I write this I'm taking a boat from Bimini to Nassau…

Many thoughts, not much time to write…. It's a constant whirl of action!


My feet are already blistered, and my already worn sandals didn't last until the port of Miami! We'll see how some DIY repairs hold up…


After a couple of years off in Miami, I've had a chance to unwind, and now feel like going again. I was getting tired of the USA… Feeling like everywhere I went, I'd seen it before…


<pix galore interspersed>



The ferry ride from Miami to Bimini was beautiful. Along the way, there were these, which I think are flying fish!


<flying fish pix>


The Caribbean consists of basically a few spits of sand. Bimini is surrounded by a handful of cays.


<bimini pix>


Bimini is a small island. It basically has a handful of resorts, and a long road (the King's Highway!) lined with houses, shops, restaurants, and more. It took me about two hours to see the island by foot.


<king's highway pix>


This ain't Miami!


<ramshackle house and vehicle pix>


The food smells delicious, haven't had a chance to eat it yet….


Arriving in Bimini, at customs they only gave me a seven day visa, when I had expected more. So, I have to find a way out, while trying to extend the visa. At the dock, I ask if there are any boats going to Nassau. (By the way, I'm imagining a NASA logo with Nassau instead…) There's a cargo boat going soon. It only departs three times per month! I have about thirty minutes to decide. Sure, let's go!


People mill about, drinking beer and smoking tobacco and marijuana as they work. "They're waiting on the captain," a woman says.


Not quite as luxurious as the ferry from Miami to Bimini - no onboard wifi! - although actually I feel a lot less seasickness on this boat, probably because of calmer waters. The water in the Caribbean is turquoise!


<turqouise water pix>


I napped briefly during the two-hour ride, the only sleep I had in two days.


The people seem extremely friendly. The place is laid-back, like going to small towns. A pleasant surprise after so long in Miami.



<me pix>


Here's my gear. It doesn't take a lot of stuff to travel!


<belongings pix>


It's terrific to get back out there again! I feel fresh! Excited for more.



Rock & Roll!!!!!!!!!!! :)


Submitted by eagle on Tue, 06/11/2019 - 17:53

I've been adding my notes here as I've had wifi. Often I've made notes while away. For now I'm rushing just to get things posted, so there may be funny formatting, pictures not included where I'd like them, etc.

Above, I'm posting some of my early blogs from the Caribbean, which it looks like I haven't got around to doing yet.

Rock & Roll!