puerto rico: vieques

This is a sad story with a happy ending. And for such an amazing trip, there's got to be something that goes wrong, right?

So once upon a time, we went to Puerto Rico. My cousin had just gone and she said if there was one thing we did, it would be to go to Flamenco Beach on Culebra. Just google it and you'll see why. To get to Culebra, you have to take a ferry ride. And to catch the ferry, you need a taxi to get to the port.

We talked to one of the concierges at the hotel to figure out all the details of getting there. He told us that the ferry tickets sell out early so we would need to be there early to guarantee a ticket. For being on vacation, getting up at 5:30 am didn't sound awesome, but we had to do it to get there.

So if you remember from our earlier post, we had to take the tram to get from our room at the bottom of the hill to the top of the resort. And waiting for it took a long time sometimes. So we got up early and packed. We decided to get Starbucks breakfast and snacks with our food vouchers. Well when we got to Starbucks, we realized we had grabbed the wrong day's vouchers. So Brandon ran back to the room, but he had to wait a while both times to catch the tram down and back up the hill.

We finally got our Starbucks paid for and then headed outside to get our taxi. He drove us through town to the port. When he pulled up he told us that we were in a good place in line and would for sure make the ferry.

The ticket office opened and we waited and waited. We kept getting closer and closer to the ticket counter. And then all of a sudden, the ticket attendant put out a sign that said, "CULEBRA SOLD OUT." No!! We were only about 10 people away from getting our tickets. When we finally got up there, we asked if there was anyway to still make it. We could catch a later ferry, but there wouldn't be another return ferry until the next morning so we would be stuck out there overnight.

We were so upset! We kept running through different scenarios and what ifs of why we missed it, but I had the impression that maybe we were supposed to miss the ferry. So that's what we told ourselves anyway.

We finally decided to go to Vieques, another island. We had absolutely no idea what to do once we got there, but thanks to a long ferry ride and still being in the US technically, we could use our data on our phones to look up things to do.

Once we got off the ferry, this sign welcomed us:


I'm not sure it was Paradise. It was very rural and run down.  We had no idea what we were doing but I had read about a beach, so we found a "taxi" to take us there.  There were 2 other college guys wanting to go to the same beach, so we split the taxi with them. 

I don't even remember the beach we went to, but we spent the day there. We came up with the idea to make a video to announce baby #3 since we had nothing else to do. We also took lots of pictures, watched wild horses, Brandon build sand castles, and we tried to swim, but it wasn't very ideal. 

When it was time go meet our taxi, the same college guys were there to take the taxi back with us. As we were riding into town, they asked us what we were doing while we killed time for the ferry. We told them we were going to look at this lighthouse because I'm obsessed with lighthouses.  When in Puerto Rico...

Well, they ended up inviting themselves with us by saying, "Oh that sounds like fun. We'll do that." At first it was super wierd, but they were easy to talk to and so they came with us. We trudged up these little town streets to get there.

Our conversation turned to Utah and the gospel and for the next hour, we discussed Mormonism up by the ligthouse. One of the guys had lots of questions and so we kept answering them.  In fact, when we were telling them about the Book of Mormon, Brandon said, "oh, I have this copy of it." He was shocked that we carried it with us, but we were so glad we did. We wrote our contact info inside and gave it to him. 

We continued to talk to them on the ferry all the way back to Puerto Rico. So, even though that day went very different than we planned, it turned out alright. In fact, it gave us a glimpse of what being on a mission together will be like. And oh what an adventure that will be. We look so forward to that day. A 5-star vacation? Not for the beaches, but definitely for that experience we were blessed to have.  

1 comment:

  1. Okay this is so incredible. We experienced this same trip last January--what are the odds we would all go to the same exact place?! We should have gone together. Anyway, we stayed at the El Conquestator for one night and loved it--so I hear you, that tram down to the bottom--come on now, how about some stairs? Seriously. We stayed the rest of the trip on Culebra which was run down but pretty dang fun too. If you ever go back you should for sure check out Flamanco Beach. Dreamy. I guess sharing the gospel was more important and you guys are amazing for letting college guys tag along with you ;) Let us know if you go back!


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