We are hoping to be out of here in another week, so we rented a car and went back to Santiago for last minute supplies.  It was my turn to drive as Dan’s license expired on his birthday. We were able to get some new shoes for Tristan.  I hope this will put his shoe problems to rest.  We actually found a Payless shoe store here with good prices.  I was hoping to pick up a pair of shoes.  Dominican women wear the best shoes, and the shops are loaded with high heels which are my weakness.  I did manage to pick out my birthday present, but I will have to wait til the actual day.  We ran out of time before I could score the shoes though.  Not to worry, as I have one pair of high heel sandals on board that I wear  with jeans when we go out here.

This time we were determined to find the Taco Bell, that Pablo the dockmaster had told us about.  Pablo’s directions were flawless and we found it.  Very exciting!!  We ordered our usual and rushed to our seat in anticipation of one of our favorite places to eat.  What a disappointment!!!  It had no taste!  More suprisingly, it had no spice.  How is it possible to have bland Taco Bell????  It got us to thinking more about the Dominican Republic and kind of summed up our trip.  The Dominican people are great, very nice, will do anything for you; the island is beautiful, lots of lush green mountains, and the prices are relatively cheap.  But, for a spanish speaking country, it is surprisingly bland in its music and food.  We love spicy and this isn’t the place for it.  The music is merengue, nice, fast, but I wouldn’t call it spicy, like latin music or reggae.  The food, predominantly chicken and rice, good, but not spicy.  Even the Bahamas, though not all the time, usually had spicier food than here.  Such a surprise.   On the boat, we pretty much live on mexican type food, the hotter the better.  And interestingly enough, we eat lots of soup.  (You would think with temperatures inside the boat of 90 plus degrees, soup would be the last thing we would eat.  But strangely enough we do.)   Oh well.  Puerto Rico has better food, and if not, the British Virgin Islands have jerk chicken and they aren’t too far away!