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03 June 2008 @ 09:28 pm
Me gusta Vieques (Translation: Vieques Kicks Ass)  
Suzanne and I have not had a vacation in four years. That's a very long time. In fact, that's an obscenely long time and I hereby vow never to go that long without a real vacation again. What's a "real vacation," you ask? Well, "real vacation" means something lasting at least a week, preferably where my better half and I fly off somewhere totally unlike the place where we live and have a fantastic time. Long weekends where we drive to other cities in the region, family holidays, and extended hiatuses caused by hurricane evacuations are not acceptable substitutes. So, yeah, a week in Vieques counts.

For those of you who have never heard of Vieques, it's a small island off the coast of Puerto Rico that is amazingly beautiful and rustic. "Beautiful" in the sense that it is full of endless miles of unspoiled, white sandy beaches looking out on the clear blue sea. The kind of thing that makes you want to stand up, hold your arms out wide, and declare that you are ready to be struck by lightening at that very moment because there's no way anything you could possibly set your eyes on from that day forward could top what you're looking at right then and there. Don't believe me? Have a look:

Vieques is also "rustic" in the sense that there are no big resorts, fancy restaurants, bustling nightclubs, or well-stocked grocery stores. There are chickens, underfed horses, and stray dogs wandering the streets, which are themselves little more than a small patches of pavement slapped around an intricate network of potholes and horse manure. The only real nightlife that Suzanne and I spotted was a cockfighting ring on the way to the airport. Somehow we never quite worked up the guts to go in and experience the true spirit of Vieques.

A brief, 10 point summary of every day of our vacation is as follows:

  1. Wake up at a leisurely hour
  2. Make coffee using the coffee maker and coffee grinder in the well-appointed kitchen in our lovely apartment
  3. Head out to a gorgeous beach that is only accessible via a bumpy, unpaved road to do some snorkeling. Note that we went to a different beautiful beach almost every morning and didn't manage to hit all of the beautiful beaches on the island
  4. Come back to the apartment. Have lunch. Take a nap (snorkeling is hard work).
  5. Bring our books and swim wear out to yet another gorgeous beach. Chill.
  6. Head back to the apartment. Wash the sand out of our various nooks and crannys.
  7. Go out for dinner.
  8. Head back to the apartment. Admire the stars from our balcony while we reflect on what an amazing day we had.
  9. Go to bed.
  10. Repeat.

Those who are already convinced that there is nothing better than a week (or more) in Vieques should stop reading now and just go book themselves a plane ticket. Those who need a fuller picture should hold their breath until my next blog post, in which I regale my faithful readers with harrowing tales of the bioluminescent bay and Captain Billy's snorkeling tour. Given my usual ability to get my blog posts up in a timely manner, this should be coming to a screen near you sometime around the beginning the next presidential administration.