On Saturday morning, we dropped off Justin and Shera at the San Juan International Airport. We ran some errands on the way back to Beatitude before meeting up with some other friends. From 1996-2000, I was in medical school at the Pennsylvania State College of Medicine in Hershey. We lived in the campus housing, affectionately known to its inhabitants as the “Kennels,” where other medical students and residents lived with their families. Among our many lifelong friendships we developed there was the friendship with Mitchelle Rivera Villegas and her family. Her husband was doing a residency in child psychology at the time. Not long after finishing residency, they returned to their native home in Puerto Rico. Now, 16 years later, we were blessed to meet up once again. Mitchelle and her friend, Ivelisse, journeyed from their homes in Dorado to Fajardo where we enjoyed visiting aboard Beatitude before having dinner at The Blue Iguana.
On Sunday, we attended church at The Good Shepherd Episcopal Church in Fajardo. We really enjoyed it. The people were exceptionally friendly. For us gringos, one of the best things was the ability to participate more fully in the liturgy. We had a Spanish Book of Common Prayer, and the words to all the readings and songs were provided (in Spanish, of course) in the weekly bulletin. It was nice to receive the Eucharist once again. After church, we met up with Mitchelle, Ivelisse, and her two sons, Bebé and Oscarlito, at the Kiosks in Luquillo for lunch. We had Puerto Rican fare at a spot called La Parrilla.
Alas, Tuesday rolled around, which meant it was time to leave our tropical paradise to return to the cold and snowy northern United States. I flew to Portland, Maine to do a week’s worth of shifts in the emergency department. Cindy flew home to Barberton, Ohio to be with family. Two of my seven shifts are complete. There are five more to go before we fly back to Puerto Rico on Thursday, March 3rd. Julie and Tracy arrive on the 4th. And, if all things work according to plan, we’ll head for the Virgin Islands on the 5th. While we are away, my Yamaha outboard on Dalí is being serviced and repaired. My Garmin electronics are also being looked at (the wind speed and direction indicator as well as the water temperature readings are not functioning). Hopefully, all will go well and we’ll be ready to continue our journey southward and eastward when we return.