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The Philadelphia Inquirer

Rain Reigns On Puerto Rico Trip

The Sunshine Goes On Vacation During Woman's Visit To La Isla Not So Bonita.


August 25, 2004
Copyright © 2004 The Philadelphia Inquirer. All rights reserved.

The Inquirer recently asked readers for their "nightmare tales" of vacations gone wrong. Here's what one Philadelphia woman experienced:

Saturday, Day 1:

11 p.m. Cathy and I arrive in Puerto Rico where "the sun always shines."

11:15 p.m. Using trash bags as umbrellas, we wade through puddles to the Tres Palmas guest house.

12:15 a.m. In line at one of Puerto Rico's hottest discos.

1:30 a.m. Still in line.

3:01 a.m. Someone grabs my purse. I'm on the ground. Cathy screams. Mugger No. 1 stares at Cathy. Mugger No. 2 fights for my purse.

3:02 a.m. They run with my cash. I'm bloody and bruised.

3:05 a.m. An apartment security guard watches from behind a fence nearby. I yell. He doesn't speak English. I yell in Spanish. He says inside his fence is his problem; outside the fence is mine.

3:06 a.m. Not rain nor muggers will sour our vacation.

Sunday, Day 2:

11:17 a.m. At the beach. A raindrop.

11:18 a.m. Mucho raindrops.

Monday, Day 3:

1 p.m. Arrive in Old San Juan.

1:05 p.m. Rain.

8 p.m. Search for a working toilet. There's no water because, before Saturday, the island hadn't seen rain in five months.

8:01 p.m. Rain.

Tuesday, Day 4:

12:10 p.m. El Yunque Rain Forest.

12:20 p.m. Rain.

1:55 p.m. Lunch.

1:56 p.m. No rain.

2:20 p.m. Luquillo Beach.

2:25 p.m. Rain.

Wednesday, Day 5:

9:30 a.m. At Quality Rent-A-Car, we put a $300 deposit on a car with no brakes or side-view mirror.

5:05 p.m. Lost. Stuck in traffic. At least it's not raining.

5:08 p.m. It's raining.

5:35 p.m. Surrender to the elements and return to Tres Palmas.

6 p.m. Swim.

6:05 p.m. I lose my footing on the coral reefs.

6:30 p.m. Emergency room - no electricity!

7:37 p.m. Off to radiology.

8:03 p.m. X-ray No. 1 doesn't work out. X-ray No. 2 is of the wrong part of my foot. X-ray No. 3 is the charm.

11:30 p.m. Covered in sand, sweat and seawater with my leg in a wrap to my knee, I'm desperate to shower at Tres Palmas.

11:32 p.m. No tap water.

11:35 p.m. Sponge bathe out of two paper cups filled with water from the cooler.

Thursday, Day 6:

10:30 a.m. Return our wreck to Quality.

10:55 a.m. Hobble to beach.

6 p.m. As we walk back to Tres Palmas, a guy driving by asks us for directions to Sunshine Hotel.

6:05 p.m. He asks again.

6:10 p.m. He asks again.

6:15 p.m. He asks again. I tell him he should know where the Sunshine Hotel is - it's the only sunshine on the island!

6:20 p.m. Rain.

Friday, Day 7:

6 a.m. Rain storm.

6:55 a.m. At the airport, we buy souvenir umbrellas. Adios, Puerto Rico.

7:05 a.m. Sun comes out.

Amy Angelilli

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