A Travellerspoint blog


Puerto Rico

Revolution, etc.

sunny 85 °F
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Puerto Rico seems to have weathered its recent earthquakes quite well. At least folks in San Juan (on the northeast) say that the southwest isn’t badly damaged and that earthquakes are rare here, and hakuna matata or however you say it in Spanish. We walked from our pier throughout Old San Juan and visited forts and walls and castles and San Juan Cathedral, the oldest in North America, built in 1540. Our guide gave us a lengthy and impassioned interpretation of the demonstrations that toppled the government six months ago. According to guide Jorge, over a third of the population gathered daily and nightly and played music and danced and distributed food and drink to the marchers and painted graffiti on every wall, with many depictions of women banging pots with spoons. The demonstrations were only loosely organized but spurred and centered on a Feminist Collective (somehow stimulated by the (bad) governor's denunciation of women). This "party"demonstration seems to have been the culminating feature of this revolution. Whatever happened, the result was the toppling of a corrupt government and new hope for the future here.

The sea surrounding Old San Juan sparkles in the sun; some of its streets are made of beautiful (old) cobalt blue cobbles and houses are painted vibrant colors. There is NO litter. The guide’s interpretation: people here are proud of their country and do not experience racism or ostracism, while Puerto Ricans in the US often don’t feel welcome or valued and so they trash their streets. Who knows, but the streets here are clean and lovely. Maybe it has something to do with attracting tourists.

Posted by HopeEakins 13:52 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Where are Bill and Hope Going Now?

2020 Itinerary

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! We are in the midst of tucking the angels into their boxes, chunking the snow and ice out of the driveway, AND packing for the heat of the Caribbean and the cold of the Antarctic. Some of you have asked if we would post an itinerary for this winter's cruise on the Silver Whisper, so here it is below. Hope and Bill

4-5 January At The Breakers, Palm Beach

6 January Depart Fort Lauderdale
7-8 January At sea
9 January San Juan, Puerto Rico
10 January At sea
11 January Bridgetown, Barbados
12 January At sea
13 January Ile Royale, French Guiana
14-15 January At sea
16 January Fortaleza, Brazil
17 January Natal, Brazil
18 January At sea
19 January Salvador de Bahia, Brazil
20 January At sea
21-22 January Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
23-24 January At sea
25 January Punta del Este, Uruguay
26-27 January Buenos Aires, Argentina
28 January Montevideo, Uruguay
29-30 January. At sea
31 January Puerto Madryn, Argentina
1 February At sea
2 February Stanley, Falkland Islands
3-4 February Drake Passage
5-7 February Antarctic Peninsula
8 February Drake Passage
9 February Ushuaia, Argentina
10 February Cruising Chilean fjords
11 February At sea
12 February Puerto Chacabuco, Chile
13 February Puerto Montt, Chile
14 February At sea
15 February Valparaiso, Chile

15-16 February At The Ritz-Carlton, Santiago, Chile

17-19 February In Hobe Sound, Florida
19 February Home Sweet Home

Posted by HopeEakins 15:08 Archived in USA Comments (1)

The Beginning

Trying to get underway

storm 51 °F

We have been enjoying San Francisco for three days, even in the pouring rain. We wandered through China Town and into St. Mary's, the only building left standing after the 1906 earthquake and fire, and we heard the clang of the cable cars. We were moved by Alcatraz and intrigued by the Museum of Modern Art. Last night we began our world cruise adventure with a gala dinner at the Jewish Museum, not paying much attention to the (fine) food because we were all reconnecting with each other. Most of our fellow passengers (220 of the 300 people on the Silver Whisper) have travelled together before on one of these long cruises. This morning, we went to worship at St. Gregory Nyssa, a rather unusual Episcopal church in the city. We gathered in the entry hall, a large circular space decorated with ninety larger than life size saints glittering in gold above our heads. Malcolm X dances next to Queen Elizabeth I who dances next to a Pakistani boy named Iqbal Masih who fought against slavery, who dances next to St. Teresa of Avila. And as these saints kicked up their heels above our heads we danced into the chairs arranged for the liturgy of the word. And after we heard the word proclaimed with vigor and heard it resonate in the following silences, we moved again, this time in a line dance back to the Eucharistic table. The choir was dispersed throughout the congregation so all our voices were supported - until time for the anthems when the choir collected in a group next to the altar table. The congregation was both very intimate and close and familiar and connected with each other (they knew how to do those dances while our feet stumbled) and also amazingly friendly and helpful to us strangers, welcoming us into their journey. We thought and prayed about the Epiphany, about light in the darkness, about finding the Babe not in Jerusalem but in a village, about beginning a journey. And we pray that this journey we are beginning on a little ship in a vast ocean will be a time of seeing light in unexpected places.

Just a moment ago we learned that our 6 pm departure under the Golden Gate Bridge into the Pacific Ocean has been delayed until tomorrow morning because of weather. We are delighted because we will not be trying to look up at the bridge in the dark and in the rain but in tomorrow's sunlight. We are also hopeful that we can get some of the many striking photos we took to share with you out of the phone and into the computer. For now, you will have to imagine saints dancing and us very excited about this new adventure.
Bill and Hope

Posted by HopeEakins 18:42 Archived in USA Comments (1)

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