the lost man chronicles
the daily chronicle

March 9-12, 2006

Tales From A Trip

Along The Avenida Ponce de León
While in San Juan we walked the Avenida Ponce de León a few times from Condado to Viejo San Juan. One afternoon we came across this abandoned country club located directly on the beachfront. I surreptitiously entered from the back through a broken window and explored the dark and dilapidated clubhouse.

Outside and just around the corner from this rundown joint, there was a few surfers involved in a drug sale with the local dealers that were seemingly just hanging out waiting for clients to come around.

When we passed the front of the clubhouse and back onto the expressway, we noticed that it was not only fenced all-around but that there was a scruffy looking security guard posted with rifle in hand near the fence....

Fortunately, I didn't get caught. And so, I am lucky enough to share with you some of the photos that came of that little venture inside and right outside this rundown, yet still quite beautiful, post of Puerto Rico.

The Hole (With The Dead Body In It)
As uninteresting as the original title sounds (I added the parenthetical after writing this note), this hole actually held something quite interesting.

For upon inspection I found inside a body-box, that is the ash box from a crematorium.

One had to wonder what it was doing there. I imagined that someone had come to throw the ashes of their loved one in the sea....although it was closed. Could it have been foul play I also wondered?

I played it safe and decided not to prod too much further. I did take a close-up photo of the box with the name of the deceased clearly typed. That in and of it self was a bit precarious since I had to reach my hand into this dark hole and was slightly afraid of what wild animal might be curled up awaiting its next victim.

The Amazing Architectural Angles del Morro
Commonly known as "El Morro," Fuerte San Felipe del Morro, had some of the most amazing architectural angles I have ever encountered.

Its interplay with the landscape was simply awe-inspiring, stunning really. So much so, that I often found myself mesmerized and unable to move forward with my tour of this impressive fort.

El Romance de Viejo San Juán
Viejo San Juan was incredibly romantic. Couples strolled about everywhere langourly, the swooning voice of popular Latin crooners like Luis Miguel quietly spilled out into the street from open windows;

groups of elders played classic love songs in the plazas, while teenagers laughed at buskers a few feet away.

It was really an amazing experience to be there. It has only been a week, yet I already yearn to return.

Risk and Adventure
This is one of the more adventurous, risky fotos of my Puerto Rico trip.

I literally had to cling to a ledge of the sea-facing wall of El Morro, with the wind blowing in from the sea to take this photo. Granted, it is not very apparent, but it is about a twenty foot drop to the ground from here.

Swimming with the Fishes
This view is from the fourth floor of the Hilton Caribe. The ruins you see in the bottom left were closed off to the public...

unless you were willing to trespass. We were, and so we saw and sat with giant iguanas, traversed into dark rooms with dusty chandeliers and beheld an exquisite view of the clear aquablue water.

One could throw stale bread into the sea and instantly a makeshift school, a motley crew of various fish would ascend in frenzied attack. Apparently, they weren't too worried about watching their carb intake.

I swam in the immediate area around and under the bridge of these ruins as well. And with a pair of cheap goggles and a good, deep breath of air - I dove deep, deep down and swam with the colorful assortment of fishes, sea urchins, sea anemones, shrimp and crabs.

Then I would stand up to get another breath of air and go down again, for the water went up to my waist at most. Nonethless, thse shallow waters boasted a great horde of sealife. The experience was exquisite to say the least, and as a result I realized the attraction and obsession some have with scuba diving.

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