19 February 2024

Puerto Rico Trip 2024

  1. Island time!! Feb 15, 2024
  2. Flying over Abaco Feb 15, 2024

    My dear friend Ted Dimbero’s childhood place and an island that we have great memories of from the trip we made there with Dipanjan and Parijat last year!

  3. View from the room Feb 15, 2024

    That is Playa Isla Verde – beach we are on. And in the distance, you can see the beach Balneario de Carolina.

  4. Glorious day here in Puerto Rico Feb 15, 2024

    Apparently last week was hard rains. We are in for luck this week.

  5. The island visit is off to a good start Feb 15, 2024

    The customary beginning with an island cocktail. We even managed to order drinks that matched our top/shirt color!

  6. Quiet sunset colors on the beach Feb 15, 2024
  7. Tranquility, thy name is a dusky beach Feb 15, 2024
  8. Old San Juan Feb 15, 2024

    Reminded me of the streets of Valetta in Malta!

  9. Coming to wall near you Feb 15, 2024

    This is the silhouette of Sharmila and me walking across a street in old San Juan and a car with bright lights coming uphill from our left. I did not get much of a chance to compose the shot in order to avoid getting hit but I might try next time with a little more thought.

  10. Visited the birthplace of Pina Colada again Feb 15, 2024

    The first time we had visited this place was back in Nov 2014 !

  11. Can you spot Sharmila? Feb 16, 2024

  12. This and a cup of cappuccino… Feb 16, 2024

    Definition of a perfect start to the morning for me!

  13. This day came fairly early Feb 16, 2024

    Last year, I had come to Puerto Rico by myself. I had loved the Seven Seas Beach. Remember sitting at the spot behind the two trees in the background for hours. I remember calling Sharmila up and saying we need to come back together some time.

    Did not realize it will happen within a year!! It is a great beach environment. The only problem is the bar sells mojito and pina colada – but not with alcohol! I asked her if it was because it was a public park. She thought I was out of my mind. I guess you can drink in public parks in PR. Turns out it is because of the owner’s religious beliefs.

  14. Perfect tranquillity Feb 16, 2024
  15. There was a subtle attempt Feb 16, 2024

    to match Nature’s colors with the colors of my clothes… the beige beach, the blue water…

    This is in Loquillo beach

  16. I caught her right in the middle of a dilemma Feb 16, 2024

    Between the wind threatening to blow her hat away and the waves hitting her off her balance, it was a difficult enterprise to pose for a shot

  17. That is a crazy coincidence!! Feb 16, 2024

    So, here I am in Puerto Rico. The main reason is to attend the wedding of somebody I know. Much younger to me, of course. I am on the board of the company that he is the CEO of. Turns out I was his mentor for a couple of years before that too. So, I show up with Sharmila at the Bacardi Distillery. It was a small and fairly intimate wedding.

    Other than the bride and the groom I did not know anybody. Sharmila and I were intently watching the proceedings of the Indian wedding. All of ten minutes must have passed.

    That “I did not know anybody”, bit? Completely unfounded.

    Suddenly a gentleman in chic, traditional Malayali dress walks up to me and Sharmila.

    “Hari. Hari Menon!”
    “Wow! I would not have recognized you!!”
    I knew Hari very well from the 90s. We had worked together. But I could not have picked him up from a crowd. He had however, recognized me in the gathering.

    “Hari. Wait. What is your connection?”
    “I am Vivek’s cousin”
    “No way!”
    The groom and I know each other for a few years now. In fact, he and his bride-to-be had gone out for dinner with Sharmila and me too. But we never figured out that we had such a common connection!!

    Go figure!!

  18. That sight harkens back to days nearly four decades back Feb 17, 2024

    Our IIT coach would take us to Elliott Beach in Chennai to practice soccer before Inter IIT games. I was the goalkeeper. So, I welcomed the soft landing in sand after diving. The problem, of course, was that the ball would drift more than I would anticipate in the wind. Almost broke my wrist for misjudging the ball by an inch while trying to thwart a thundering kick from Satish Sundar. That guy had the hardest kick in the team.

  19. Those are some eye popping waves Feb 17, 2024

    Last night, we had asked Alejandro who was helping us at the bar for some tips on beaches. This was the first one he suggested – Playa Puerto Nuevo.

    One side of the beach has some huge rocks. See the first picture. The lowest point is probably 40-60 feet high.

    Now see the eye-popping large wave come and crash on it from behind. And in its wake, leave a lot of small waterfalls on the rock.

    I have never seen anything like this. The videos are jaw dropping!

  20. Another jaw dropping power of the waves Feb 17, 2024

    This is the second beach we went to today. Mar Chiquita Beach. There is a tidal pool here. But the waves crashing in thru the gap come with so much power and volume that nobody is allowed to get into the pool!

    You can stand there mesmerized for hours by the power and scale of fury of the waves.

  21. Island life! Feb 17, 2024

    Interesting phenomenon with the cocount tree. It has brown, yellow and green leaves. If you notice carefully, it is greenest on the top and most brown in the bottom. The tree, as it grows taller, dumps the leaves that are on the bottom!!

  22. Kayaking with Sharmila Feb 17, 2024

    We were off to Laguna Grande in Fajardo to see bioluminescence!

  23. Sunset in Laguna Grande Feb 17, 2024
  24. Today’s goal – explore the southeast side of the island Feb 18, 2024

    Between the two of us, we have explored the north east, north west and south west side of the island. Today, we will hit the south east side. The beaches are less crowded there. First we have to cross the mountains. The drive thru the mountains is very pretty.

  25. Punta Guilarte Beach Feb 18, 2024

    Very secluded. In the whole beach spanning a mile, there were only three other parties. Lots of shaded areas to sit on the grass. The wind made it feel really nice and cool.

  26. Another view of the Punta Guilarte Beach Feb 18, 2024
  27. Can you spot the parrot? Feb 18, 2024

    Remember the experience from last year in El Combate beach? This time too, in the trees in the beach, I could hear the same noise. I told Sharmila to see if she can spot parrots. I did not have my big camera this time to zoom in.

    We did spot one. Can you find it?

    After about five minutes, some half a dozen of them flew by us!

  28. Remember how I talked about how desolate the beach was? Feb 18, 2024

    Well, an icecream truck spotted us and quickly drove over the grass to reach us!!

  29. The diving cormorant Feb 18, 2024

    It swoops in vertically down, beak first to scoop its prey a couple of feet deep in the water!

  30. Lunch by the marina in Salinas Feb 18, 2024
  31. One last view from the room Feb 19, 2024