Santo Domingo: Day 2: La Casita Verde and 4 Wheelers

I woke up feeling content. At first, my eyes peeled open, and it was an instant “Where am I?” was I back in New York, was I still in Puerto Rico? I hear my baby cousins running around chasing each other, and the noticias playing from the kitchen. I was home. Home, not where all of my clothes were stored, where my pretty bed was messy, or where I had routine waiting for me, but the home where my heart was… la casita verde. The little green house.

This is where family is, this is where when you wake, the birds are chirping, abuela is busy making desayuno (breakfast). This is where, no matter how many of my cousins have left home and started a family of their own, they show up everyday for lunch, where the grandkids run around and play in the yard, where the spouses help around the house, where we all come together. Esta casita verde is love.
Like usual, whenever I’m here, I spend my morning roaming the backyard for a quick lap, and since I try my best not to pick up any internet and do work, my tiny little notebook comes into play. Writing started for me at a young age, especially since I always caught myself not remembering a lot of details about what happened last week, a month ago etc. So I started to write, I know have memories that I can cherish for a very long time. I have diaries from 5th grade, crushes about boys, struggles at home, and all my little evil thoughts. Sometimes I go through them and see how much I have grown. Since Chris was so eager to do 4 wheelers, I hounded my cousin Yenny to find out how we could get that done. Today was spent with speed and a lot of dirt on our faces.

I was nervous, and Chris being the speed demon that he is had no care in the world. “This is what atv’s are made for” is what he would tell me everytime we sped up through a dirt hill, or even by passed the trail that was made up for us. When we first arrived, I mounted my helmet on tight and grabbed my camera. (Like my camera would stay home, I take that thing everywhere) Chris was excited, I was busy praying.
We rode along the highway, something tat scared the shit out of me, more than the actual dirt track, maybe because the cars were speeding so close next to us. I just kept picturing my body alongside the curb in pain..yikes….

This was all Chris, he asked if I wanted my own bike, and I refused. I think I trusted him more with my life than I did myself. I jumped behind him and grabbed on. “Hold on tight” he would tell me everytime the miles per hour would go up higher. I want to say that I hated it, but I was secretly loving it. And I know he was too, everytime I grabbed on tighter and yelled for dear life. Him cracking up was everything.I had given Yenny the other go pro, even though her and Franklin were in the back most of the time, having issues with their 4 wheeler. It was going off to the side, they were stopping and comparing to Chris, going much slower. But who wouldn’t with this daredevil?

He puts me in the front, and is driving from the back, he starts going fast, faster, faster…. and he doesn’t stop. He’s hysterically laughing, and screaming at the top of my lungs. STOOOOP, CHRIS!!!

When he finally stops, I jump off, and storm off… “I’m not riding with you anymore!” he’s still laughing, and I’m looking for someone to trade places with me. My baby cousin Voctor looks at me real quick and says “no”.

“I’m sorry, come back!” with that evil looking grin on his face. I roll my eyes and hop right back on the bike.
The worst mistake this man has made yet. Check it…. He tells me ” You want to drive?”

Oh, my goodness! I swear, I wasn’t trying to kill him on purpose. I step in front, mind you, I don’t even have a driver’s license. I think he was looking for a death wish. I started off pretty well, so I’m surprised at my self. Steady, steady, I was picking up speed and had control, as soon as I decide to slow down because I was getting scared, I crash into the sugar canes. Chris crashing right into my and hurt his leg with the atv. Oh, shit!

“She’s trying to kill me!”I have so much footage from this day, and surprisingly even the crash…. (which he still thinks I did on purpose) lol

I’ll be posting videos soon, I have so much work to do, trust  me, they’ll be up soon.

Tell, me, you think I did it on purpose or was it an accident?

(the locals wanted a ride, they would chase us while we we riding, when we took a pit stop to get beers, I had the chance of capturing this shot)

Santo Domingo: Day 1: Bendiciones

Omg, omg, omg… what the hell is all that banging that’s going on outside?! The light is peeking through the blinds and the studio is a mess. Chris and I take a quick look at each other and it’s like we both read each other’s mind. We jumped out of bed in a panic. “What time is it?”

10am…holy shit! We’re going to miss our flight!

We ran around the room like chickens with their heads cut off, trying to pack and not forget anything, keeping the space decent and clean for our host so it doesn’t look like we’re slobs. Rushing and getting ready, while constantly bumping into each other, so we can make it to our flight on time.

When we first arrived, we had to pick up the keys at the Chinos right below the condo, now that we’re leaving, it was pretty hectic to return the keys since they were closed. We didn’t have time for this. We ended up leaving the keys at the tiny restaurant next door with a waitress, texted our hostess and hoped for the best. We checked into the airport and made it right on time. Thank goodness… Santo Domingo, here we come!

Part 2 of our trip…. You thought we were going home didn’t you?

“Look for a cute, short blonde” That’s what I tell Chris after we picked up our baggage. My cousin Yenny was waiting for us at the gate with my cousin Franklin. I introduce Chris and everyone says their hellos. He seems to be hiding his spanish, I’m guessing it’ll make an appearance once he feels more comfortable. I explained to him that this is the first time I bring a boy to meet my family in Dominican Republic. He asks me if that’s a good thing. I don’t even have an answer to that yet. I will admit, I was a tiny bit nervous though.

We stopped at Boca Chica to get some food before heading home. Some pescado frito (fried Fish) and tostones. Amazing! i wasn’t even hungry, but my plate will tell you other wise. I warned Chris that while our stay here, he would never be without a beer in his hand when it comes to my family, and he’s slowly starting to realize that. With just a 30 minute ride to the infamous green house, we already had gone through about 3 jumbo Presidentes.

Bendiciones!

(a greeting used when saying hello in latin customs, you are asking for blessings from your'elders, they usually respond with " Dios te bendiga" which means, "may God bless you"

My abuela was in the kitchen cooking up a storm as usual. She looked great and I was happy to see her. I hopped into the shower and got ready to head out to see some cousins and my aunt and uncle. Everyone usually just hangs out in the front of the corner store with a beer in hand, music blasting in the background.

Whenever I see my Tio Netty, I get the instant flashback of Papi Neto, my abuelo. They look so alike to me, it’s mind boggling. Kisses on the cheek going back and forth, introductions were made to the neighborhood friends were done. Everyone here is so inviting….and always willing to fill up your cup with more beer.

My cousin Ernesto finally settled down with a girl, Katerine, so he was all smiles when he was showing off his new place. I’m so proud of him, and even better yet.. he looks so happy.

Dominican Republic. Day12: Wao Hector!

I’m soooo excited! I need to move!
It’s part 2 of Hector’s Birthday Celebration. We walked into a night club by the name of Wao.

A bottle of Jack Daniel’s was ordered, and to mix it up, some 7up.

The music was amazing, everything I was hoping it would be. It was bachata, merengue, tipico, salsa all night. I was in loooove.  I haven’t been dancing in so long, it’s so sad. Bachata to me, is my all time favorite. I bust out my moves and hope someone, anyone can keep up with me. I’m usually leading and it’s always a surprise when I actually have to follow.
I had the chance of meeting more of  Yenny’s coworkers and they are all so fun, and funny. There was like 6 women and 3 men, so when it came to dancing we ended up having to wait a few  turns. I was just grateful that the men danced. Whenever I want to dance I have to beg someone to get up…. so not my favorite thing to do.
My camera was being passed around the whole night, something I never mind. I always find the funniest randomest pictures of my night.

Since of course, we were celebrating Hector’s birthday, Yenny and I snuck in a request to the DJ to give Hector a shout out…. Once he did, we were the loudest bunch cheering him on.
My cousin Yenny is a trip ♥
After all our dancing, and not the best straight walking we headed to what drunken people do best…. eat.
There was this bright yellow chimi truck that we all stopped by. Typing this now, I actually want one now! That chimichurri was delicious. Can you tell how bad Yenny wants hers?

Look at her face!
It was a great night, I want to do it all over again. Hopefully it won’t be forever and a day until I get to dance again.

Happy Birthday Hector!