PR: blue cobblestones

Blue cobblestone streets in Old San Juan

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Blue cobblestones
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Pretty streetscape across from cathedral

PR: sculptures in Old San Juan

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Ballaja
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Family
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In park across from cathedral
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In park across from cathedral (plus live cat)

PR: Old San Juan photos

Old San Juan

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Eastern half
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Christopher Columbus statue
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Old casino and Castillo San Cristobal
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sentry box
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Chapel
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Cemetery and chapel
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Part of El Morro fort
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Cannonballs and lighthouse on top of El Morro

PR: tech tip re camera (phone)

Tips:
1. Phone camera drains battery due to all that screen usage . Take an extra battery and/or portable charger (like the one I bought in Singapore, which broke in my carry-on since I carelessly tossed it in there)
Update: also bring a cigarette lighter USB adaptor – w oils have worked on one flight plus in rental car.
2. A camera phone is not a replacement for a camera on a full day of sightseeing. See tip 1.
3. I miss other features from real camera like great optical zoom
4. On the plus side, it’s easy to upload photos from the phone to blog/email/facebook.
5. So take both for sightseeing.

Update: I forgot 6: no strap on phone could be dangerous when taking photos at cliffs and such

Vieques: luminescent bio bay tour

Did this last night. Cool but not as wow as I had hoped for.
Photos didn’t work on my phone so look at Abe’s Bio Bay Tour for photos and info.
Note you can’t swim there anymore – kayak only.

Tips:
Choose a new moon or close to it.
Camera phone won’t pick up the lights.
Tour is pretty short so go for dinner afterwards

PR: tiny flight to Vieques

Flew in an 8-9 passenger Cessna 208B on Vieques Air Link from smaller Isla Grande airport (SIG) in San Juan to the island of Vieques (VQS) off the east coast (20min).
No security,  no metal detector, no ID check (they just asked my name and checked their list). Well a dog did sniff the carry on bags before boarding.

Flight hugged the coastline and never went over 1800 feet! I noticed it felt lower than a basic skydive do I peeked at the pilot’s instrument panel.

Main island in PR has a mountainous centre and some swampy areas inland from the scenic coast.

San Juan: off to a rough start

So after deplaning I go to the washroom and change into shorts (it’s 27C and humid) and futz with my valuables.. .
And emerge to find the outside of the airport virtually deserted. Weird. This is a big city after all.

I decide to take the local bus for the local flavour,  plus I’m tired and not hung go on going out tonight so I’m not in a rush.
It’s 75 cents per bus (it takes 2 as the first one is a sub-5 min ride to a multi bus stop near Isla Verde area.

I was told exact change needed which I foolishly thought that one could pay with a buck and not get change, like any bus system in, oh,  pretty much anywhere.

The driver let me on,  refusing to take the dollar. A woman changed it for me a minute later and I paid.

At the bus stop I went into the pharmacy to buy mints and get change, do of course my next bus roared by.

Waiting for almost 30min as I write this.. .
Update: as I feared make that one hour between buses.

Oh and there are 2 stops here 30m apart, neither of which are signed. I asked someone and he pointed me to the other stop.

A taxi would only have been $20 but that’s beside the point.. .

MIA flight delays

My connecting flight is delayed an hour so it worked out.

AA: biz class to SJU via MIA

The good:
Power ports (working), Wi-Fi (had a bunch of free gogo passes) and a good newish smart phone adds up to good times. Well, at look east good distraction, better than the overhead video.
Service is good/friendly too.

The bad:
I was able to check in online yesterday but couldn’t print out my boarding passes so I still had to make the 60min checking cutoff (carryon only).

Lounge dragon claimed my “day pass” for lounge was only good for one airport/entry. Website says you can use in multi cities same day.

Delay on departure reduces my connection from 50 to 5 min. Next flight is 4hr20min later. Maybe connection will be delayed too. Might make meeting my friend Andrea tough, as she happens to be flying through MIA then too

The ugly :-)
Lunch on AA flight in biz (after ramekin of nuts):
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Corn kernels :(