This is my last week in Las Terrenas. It’s too soon to leave. The weather has been perfect all winter. It’s been hard for us to imagine what the Massachusetts contingent has experienced.

We had two visits in February, the time passed all too quickly. Our daughter Laura visited and took home an orphaned puppy. A week later our son Aaron and his friend Nancy were here for a week. It was nice having them all with us.

Popi, Laura's new love. One lucky little puppy.

Popi, Laura’s new love. One lucky little puppy.

A few final observations on life here. I’ve mentioned the motorbikes that are the main mode of transportation along with quads. They are everywhere, zig-zagging through the narrow streets, competing with SUVs and pedestrians for space. Children sit in front of their parents on the bikes and I’ve only seen a half dozen people wearing helmets in the entire time I’ve been here. Vehicles park wherever they can find a spot, either side of the street, on the sidewalk, in any open space. It is chaotic but seems to work.

Yesterday we saw a man pressing sugar cane through an interesting contraption. Unfortunately I didn’t have the camera with me. He gave us some of the juice to drink. It was a pale green watery liquid and was delicious. It was sweet but not intensely so, and had a grassy flavor. We liked it a lot.

The gardens around our house are beautiful, flowers just bloom and bloom. Every place we look are blossoms of bougainvillea and hibiscus and orchids. Many of the flowers are unlike any we’ve ever seen.

The view from our veranda looking across the pool.

The view from our veranda looking across the pool.

My final French lesson will be Monday morning. I think my comprehension has improved and my vocabulary for sure but learning a new language is hard, at least for me. Spanish and French are widely spoken here but we also go to a German restaurant frequented by many Germans. There is also an Italian community. We never seem to get it quite right, should we be saying si or oui or merci or gracias or danke or… We’re very good at Hola though.

Woman selling fruit on the beach.

Woman selling fruit on the beach.

spectacular flower that grows in our garden. Wikipedia calls it a Lobster flower.

spectacular flower that grows in our garden. Wikipedia calls it a Lobster flower.