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Engaged at Black Sand Beach

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Thanks to future bride Christina for this post:

“Scott and I both wanted to go to the black sand beach because we had never seen anything like that before! It was quite easy to find thanks to your map, with the exception of one wrong turn at the bridge. Scott had been swimming for the last 24 hours with the ring in a small pocket in his swim trunks. I think when he realized that we were all alone on the beach that he had found the right moment. I was completely surprised to see him pull out a ring, and couldn’t believe he had been snorkeling with it in the ocean! I had thought that it might be nice to get engaged in Puerto Rico, but I had totally talked myself out of it because I couldn’t fathom how he would figure it all out logistically!”

P.S. from Kathy: Scott mailed the ring to me so it would arrive one day before they arrived.  What a super organized guy.

Categories : beaches, Nature
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Hurricane Earl Skims by Vieques

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On Monday night and Tuesday during the day (August 30 & 31), Hurricane Earl passed about 100 miles to the north of Vieques.  While it was blowing about 135 miles per hour in its center, it brought only tropical storm force winds ( about 40-50 mph) and some rain to Vieques.  Not much damage was done, although a few trees and lots of branches came down.  One problem was the loss of water and electricity for a while.  One sailboat (“Asante” – about 45 feet long) was pushed up on the shore of the beach in Esperanza.  It took the rescue company two days to get it out because it was sitting in less than 3 feet of water.  I went beach combing today on Sun Bay and saw lots of shells,  sea sponges and sea fans, a crab,  a baby conch (which I through back in the water),  and the normal trash that gets brought in with a storm.  Tonight Tropical Storm Fiona will pass us by far to the north and we are hoping for sunnier days this labor day weekend.

Categories : Nature
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Hike to Black Sand Beach

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Kathy and Luvy

Today I went for a hike to Black Sand Beach with my dog Luvy.  I left  Casa de Kathy at 7:30 AM and walked to Coco Beach (Playa Cocal) and west along the south coast.   There are about four headlands of rocks that you have to pass so it is good to wear shoes that can get wet.  The walk is peaceful and you will pass many beaches good for beach combing (finding shells and sea glass). The coast is rocky and wavy.

As I stood on the 4th headland and looked west, I saw the very long sandy beach with orange cliffs.  That is Black Sand Beach.  In a very short distance I stopped where the river bed joins the coast because that is my favorite spot to swim because there is a sandy bottom.  I swam for about 10 minutes while my faithful dog Luvy watched.

There are patches of black sand all along this beach.    How much depends on the the movements of the sea.

Dry river bed that leads to black sand beach

Then I walked north up the dry river bed under a  wonderful tree canopy.  The total silence except for the birds is what I love about this walk.  In about ten minutes I arrived at the public road (201) where I took a right and headed back home.  This walk is nice in the morning because the road is shaded by all the trees.  Thanks for these photos of life along the river bed taken by my guests Theresa and Slava.

Lizard (anole)

Hermit crab

I got home at 9 AM – one hour and a half after I left.   What a great way to begin the day!

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Wild horses experience

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The message below was written by a former guest and friend, Ted Glick.

Near Black Sand beach on south coast of ViequesThe photo was taken by another guest, Joe Saraceno who has stayed at Casa de Kathy more than once. This winter Joe and his wife were walking towards Black Sand beach and encountered these beautiful galloping horses and were able to take this dramatic photo.  In the background you can see Cayo Afuera, the island in front of the Malecon.

Thanks for sharing, Ted and Joe .

Sent: Monday, January 04, 2010 6:34 AM
From: Ted Glick
Greetings from beautiful Vieques.

Yesterday I had an experience like none I’ve ever had. Jane and I are walking up a mountain road, closed to vehicle traffic, no other people around, to the top of the highest mountain here (1,000 feet) and we encountered a herd of a dozen wild horses eating by the side of the road. We spent the next hour and a half, going up and then coming back down, trying to get past them, walking behind them, watching them speed up to get ahead of us and going out of sight, eating lunch prematurely as we came upon them forming a kind of blockade of the road while half of them ate some luscious-looking long grass by the side of the road.

We eventually decided to press our luck by walking slowly up towards the blockaders to try to get through so we could get up to the top. Fortunately, and as we thought was likely, they moved aside and then down the road to allow us to go past. Then, after we’d gone up to the top and were coming back down we ran into the whole group of them again at one point and they proceeded to move as one group, about 15-20 feet ahead of us, all the way down the rest of the hike to the bottom.

It was amazing to have this kind of dance with these beautiful animals,
each of us eyeing each other nervously, us moving cautiously, trying to get
them to trust us, watching certain ones of the horses playing leadership roles in their determination of how to respond to us, etc.


Categories : Animals
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Swimming with a Manta Ray

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Today I swam with a small manta ray (about 2 feet wide)  in Esperanza beach.  I usually see turtles and manta rays if I swim between about 8 Am and 10 AM between the small and big pier in Esperanza.  This is a nice time to snorkel there because there usually are very few people around.   The water is such a pretty turquoise and the whole area is so pretty.


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Casa de Kathy
367 Calle Bromelias   Barrio Esperanza   Vieques, Puerto Rico 00765
787-741-3352 or 787-565-2717 (cell)

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