Jan 26, 2011

Puerto Rico - 2010

Pasión. Plena.  Pasteles. Poder. Placer.....all words that embody the isle of Puerto Rico. The Rich Port, "El Puerto Rico" as traders and merchants began to label it after Colombus first landed here. This is a special place, truly an "island of enchantment" (Isla del Encanto) as the natives proudly call this beautiful, lush piece of land, and rightly so.

I have had the pleasure of traveling to Puerto Rico almost three times in the past, back when I was single and slightly younger. (We are talking almost 10 years ago people!) I have so many fond memories of our time spent laughing, dancing , dancing, dancing, (did I mention dancing? ) sunbathing, beach dwelling and exploring every nook and cranny with our awesome friends who live there! I recall endless days of sightseeing from one corner of the island to the other that ended with sheer delight and little to no sleep. Yet the unrelentless excitement and short attention span usually associated with immaturity, er, I mean youth :) did not allow me to fully comprehend or appreciate this wondrous little jewel of an isle for what it truly represents. After ten years of absence I had almost erased the true essence of this happy  place and almost forgotten why we had relished so many magnificent days here. Almost.

This time however, was different....



This time I had the great pleasure of experiencing at a whole other level the beauty and bounty of PR, next to the love of my life, my hubby, thus giving new and more profound meaning to our time spent there. Providing me with the ability to re-discover and remember what makes this place so special and unforgettable. It also allowed us the learning experience of falling in-love with the gorgeous scenery, the electric ambiance, the food - an exquisite criollo dish, a  tropical fruity drink or two - the people, and especially each other. All over again. ( As if we don't already do that every single time we get away...or even when we don't. hee! but I digress) I observed in delight how my hubby reconnected with his roots and understood with a newfound meaning why so many Boricuas  love their island so unapologetically.  Who wouldn't?













For us this winter escape proved to be more than a getaway, it turned into a fun, fabulous, romantic and rejuvenating adventure! Well with staying in wonderful hotels like the chic and uber comfortable Conrad Hotel on the Condado (Kev landed a great deal on hotels.com:) and eating slap-your-momma-sooo-good-your-gonna-need-to-confess-because-these-are-SINfully-amazing criollo dishes... We were bound to have an incredible time! 




Seriously, Puerto Rican food is - hands down - some of the best Caribbean food on the Planet!  It is flavored in such a way that to try to describe it with mere words challenges even the most seasoned (pun intended) of writers. The secret has to be attributed to that magic ingredient - sofrito, which renders the most intoxicating aromas and flavors when combined with other "magic" ingredients such as the renderings of chuletas (pork), coconut milk and other food potions that only truly gifted and wise Puerto Rican cooks know and use, not to be shared with the masses. Their secret remains theirs alone. One does not need to know it as long as you have the privilege to taste it...and I promise you, you WILL come back for more. I told Kevin that I am convinced the arroz con guandules I tasted there just had to be riddled with some illegal drug substance because one mouthful has you instantly and incurably - ADDICTED!

We reunited with old friends and made new ones.... Boricuas are some of the friendliest, liveliest, nicest people you'll ever meet! Seriously warm hearted and passionate (and I'm not saying this simply because I married one. Although he IS amazing he doesn't count, he grew up in New York City:)




More of our adventure documented below:

















































































































 













 































El Yunque

Cascada de la Coca







Pasteles. Divine.



 



 












*All copywright photos are part of my Fine Art Photography Galleries and available for sale at my  C'est La Vie Shop here.


and know that we are already planning our return, Culebra, Aguadilla and many other amazing places expect  us back ...oh,  and our beloved friends and family do as well!

Hope you enjoyed.  Les digo nenes, estuvo pero Brutal!;)

1 comment:

destinationathlete said...

Looking through all your photos just made me so homesick!!

LOVE the photos...and even more importantly, the taste of all that food! (Time to make some gandules!)