Starting to speak espanol

Trip Start Oct 01, 2006
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Flag of Dominican Republic  ,
Thursday, April 19, 2007

I quit the hooker town of boca chica and left for another one called sosua in the north.. Getting from boca chica to santo domingo was a pain, i had to get one bus which is free to the main westbound bus terminal in san andreas which i was told at my hotel i'd need to change to get the gua-gua into SD, when i arrived at san andreas the driver told me to wait onboard as he'll be going to SD in a minute, a few minutes passed, no one got on and thegua-gua (bus) next to me was filling up fast and had a sign for santo domingo in the front, i was thinking "i'm getting stares from the other bus saying 'what you doing in that bus gringo, this bus is leaving first'" which would have ment i was being told lies by the driver to get me to spend money on his ride. I thought sod it, i'll confront him in my best spanish that the other bus is going to depart way before his empty bus so i'm swapping, he replied something like 'yes, the other bus departs 1st, blah blah blah (plus hand signals of 2 buses racing) and no problemo for me' I jumped on the other bus happy that i've outwitted the conman and just as i thopught we were off done the highway a couple of seconds after i climbed aboard.

The bus got 5 metres down the road, hit a maximum of 10 mph and then slowed down to honk his horn at uninterested people within sight of the bus, also i was feeling kinda hot as unlike the previous bus this one had no air-con, which remembering from my guidebook is called the caliente bus (hot bus).. The maximum speed the driver attained was 15 mph, slowly down every 20 metres to beep and signal anyone he could, this is on a main highway, everything else is going 60mph.. the driver would slow right down to beep empty side streets for as i could see no reason than to waste time, i'm sure he wasn't expecting people to jump out of the bushes upon hearing the horn as the only passengers that did board were standing at the edge of the road with their arms extended.. the driver would have probably beeped a dead body on the side of the road just to make sure that he didn't want to board the bus to santo domingo. It didn't take long to work out this was the local slow and hot bus into town. My air conditioned expresso gua-gua soon sped passed us on it's way into the city centre without stopping, where i was left feeling pretty stressed and hot at the back of the bus.

My ordeal ended in town, the ride took over an hour, it could have been less than 30 minutes but i trusted my instincts (which normally works) instead of staying put and trusting the local, i couldn't be bothered to muck about any more with walking through town or searching another gua-gua to the other terminal a few blocks across town so got into a local taxi to drop me off for 150pesos.. the next part of my adventure was according to muy lonely planet a 2 1/2 hour bus ride traverse of the island to the north coast, 5 hours later and freezing my arse off because the driver loves to hear angry comments about the sub-zero conditions of the air-con onboard as passengers disembark i arrived half a mile out of sosua, i headed for a presidente at the bar to work out how to get down the road into town during the pissing rain..

after the taxi drivers euphoria of a bus load of potential customers had died down i managed to find a passing local bus to skip me down the road, the guy who collects the money had heard of the place i was staying and told me he'll stop the van for me.. after 15 miutes of driving, obviuolsy way passed the 800metre mark of my destination i asked him 'donde sosua' he replied with a bemused look pointing behind us.. great, it was getting dark, in the middle of a rain storm and we'd flown passed my turn off ages ago.. luckily the gua-gua flagged down a passing motorbike who gave me a lift back into town and dropped me of near a petrol station. I didn't have a clue where i was, checked my map and with the only bit of luck for the day he happened to drop me on the road of my hotel. Walking down the road now i couldn't find it, i went into the hooker bars and was told 'rockys bar is finito' and to stay for a drink with the whores, i declined found a phone and was directed to the hotel that i'd walked passed twice. i checked in a crashed out after a long day of traveling mishaps.

i haven't done much since, i've had no beers for two days now which might be a record for 2007. i've joined a spanish class and enjoyed my first lesson.. when i first arrived there was a stunning teacher in my class room, i thought this is going to be fun. she then left to get her work mate who isn't so pleasing to the eye but is a good laugh and will helpfully keep me concentrating on learning espanyol for the next week or two i'm here.

I've also managed to contact my brother, i'd been using the wrong number for the last 3 months to phone him and text him.. and hopefully he'll sort out what i need doing back in london even though he is someone you can't really rely anymore since his halcyon days have been left far behind. My current plans is a couple of weeks here, a week in Haiti visting the citadelle, cap haitian and fort liberte.. a revisit to cuba, then it's to jamaica for the red stripe reggae sumfest, and even though my planless travls have a minor plan that will also definately fail it would be good to get through central america from mexico to colombia for the "Concurso Nacional de Belleza of Colombia..." a traveler who blogs on this site who's very witty kiemce went last year and looks like fun..

Btw since i've been writing this i've been biten about 10 times from the mozzies, i'm high deet wearing repllent but i'm thinking it's actually something that is attracting them, i'm not taking malaria pills and i've heard there is no dengue outbreaks in sosua right now so it's just the itching i'm gonna be putting up with.. the joys of travelling, eh?!
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Comments

monty on

your blog is great! i spent last christmas in puerta plata at the field of dreams..thinking of going to rockys this christmas...keep up the good work..very interesting reading!

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