Palmas Del Mar is a really nice marina. The entire complex is huge with condos stretching all around the harbour. The staff are all very friendly and helpful. You have only to step out onto the dock and someone will more than likely ask if you would like a ride in the golf cart somewhere. If you are walking with a bag of garbage they will often offer to take it to the can for you. We went to get a bag of ice yesterday and it was delivered right to the boat. We’re feeling really pampered.
Also within walking distance there is a small marine store, bank, car rental, numerous restaurants and a lovely pool and Tiki bar.
So, first thing Monday morning we hiked over and rented a car for a couple of days. Thinking ahead we brought along our trusty TomTom GPS from home to make things easier. Well that was the plan anyway. It seems that there is a little language barrier between a Canadian GPS and the streets of Puerto Rico. I’m not sure if it’s the way the streets are abbreviated but we couldn’t find anything. Not to worry, Target Car Rental gave us detailed instructions on how to get everywhere. Just in case, I programmed our present location into the TomTom so that we could always make it back.
|this one was easy|
From marine supply store (no autopilots) to Walmart (no diesel oil, flour, crackers or fishing lures), to West Marine (still no autopilots, or VHF radios and their lures were a crazy price), back to marine supply store, and back again to West Marine.
We had read that Sam’s Club offer a free one day membership to cruisers. Once at the service desk the story was a little different. They charge you and extra 10% on top of your purchase at the till. No thanks!
After a full day of trying to collect provisions for the boat we decided to call it a day and head back. We could get the food tomorrow. I pressed home on the TomTom and it told me that no route had been entered. What?
On to plan B. Follow the direction in reverse. It was then that we came upon a Walmart Super Centre and chose to make one more stop. New shorts for Brian, a muffin tin, flour, crackers, UHT milk, juice. Mostly the stuff we have used up since leaving Florida.
Back at the marina we loaded all our goodies into a cart and hauled it back to the boat. The finger docks here are concrete and just a little bit wider than the wheels on the cart. As Brian passed me the bags from dock to boat I had a terrible vision of the cart falling in and us going for a midnight swim to retrieve our stores. The next challenge was finding a spot to store it all.
Tuesday we did it all again. This time we found Ralph’s Food Warehouse. Something like a Costco without the membership. This was the best we have seen since Florida and all in one place. The selection of fruit and veggies was wonderful after just seeing the basics for so many weeks.
Driving in Fajardo is interesting. A Kia Rio is no match for a speed bump. Apparently you can park wherever you like, facing whatever direction you like. You may be sharing your parking spot with a horse. Oh, and a red light is merely a suggestion.