Vieques...is it worth it?
I somehow always end up making it to places I read about. Might take me some time, but if it catches my eye in one of my many travel mags, well it's ripped out, tucked away and stored for a rainy day of escape planning.
The latest was Vieques. It's a tiny, hard scrabble off the coast of Puerto Rico that has been on my big list for years. And, from NYC, tickets are a couple hundred bones. Also, it's just a few hours away non-stop. You could literally pop down for a day or two and feel like you've really gotten away. Now, I can't say I'd ever go back, but still...
I did the bio bay - kayaking out on a moon rich night, hopping into the ocean and watching the water light up around you with every move you make (pretty dang surreal). I ate my way through so much sub-par food, only to find the very best fish and shrimp at a steamy joint in town - El Patio (on my last night!). I rented a jeep and cruised the whole island, finding "secret" beaches and literally being surrounded by a school of fish just off shore while snorkeling (never seen anything like it). Everywhere I went, they followed. I found the coolest bar in town full of pirate like expats, complete with eye patches, arms missing and camera phobias. Everyone ducked and ran when I pulled out the cam. What have these people done in past lives?
I ended up staying at the new W Vieques cause once I went onto their immaculate grounds, well good lord! Just a really special, don't-wanna-go kinda place. I chowed on tofu tacos, found organic stores with soba noodles and pickled herring, met folks desperate for the NY Times, drank liters of rum punch, met sailors from all over the world, ate piles of grilled lobster dunked in butter, got sunburned to the point of not moving, and read 3 books in no time flat.
Not too shabby for a shortie vaca. Now, though, it's off the list. And, frankly so is most of the Caribbean (too expensive). I'm back on SE Asia, Central American grounds. It's just been a long run, this TV show.
Done out here in Jersey come early August though...so CLOSE! Time to check back in on my sailboat, my floating home, my empty Chicago condo, my LIFE for God's sake. Where'd ya go??