Ponce

Ponce (pronounced “pohn-say”) is the second largest city in Puerto Rico (San Juan is, of course, number one). On Sunday morning, we pulled into the very nice and reasonably priced Ponce Yacht and Fishing Club. Although we were looking forward to exploring Ponce, we were also hoping to deal with a couple of boat issues.

Beatitude at the Ponce Yacht Club

Beatitude at the Ponce Yacht Club

First… the boat issues. While in Puerto Real Marina a week or so ago, they had no 50-amp service on our dock, so we used the marina’s 50 amp to 2-30 amp y-adapter. One evening the breaker on the dock source went off. Since that time, when we were hooked up to shore power or running the generator our electrical outlets would turn off periodically and my charger/inverter would read “overtemp.” That didn’t sound good to me. So, I had arranged for a mechanic/electrician to meet us on Monday morning. Lo and behold, once I arrived, I no longer had the problem. I even turned off the shore power and ran the generator and still no problem. I’m very thankful! But, I hope it doesn’t recur once we’re underway again. The other boat issue which needed attention was that my water temperature sensor is reading crazy numbers (like 120° F), and my wind direction and speed indicator has stopped working. We’ve had problems with it intermittently going out since we’ve had it installed. These are new electronics (as of August of this past year) and are under warranty. But I’ve found, finding a authorized Garmin dealer in the Caribbean is next to impossible. I’m still in contact with Garmin to try to figure this out. Those pieces of equipment are not vital to safe travel, so we can wait a little while if we must.

Beatitude in front of a Leopard 40 on the T-head

Beatitude in front of a Leopard 40 on the T-head

Now, on to the fun part! On Sunday, we were serenaded with a number of merengue and salsa bands (most were recorded) whose music emanated from the La Guancha (the boardwalk or malecón) which sits just across the small harbor from Beatitude. The serenades blared simultaneously through the — I might say — very efficient loudspeakers. In the evening, we decided to take a stroll over to La Guancha to join in the fun. I didn’t really mind the loud music. I love the tropical sound of salsa music.

The Tablado de La Guacha as seen (and heard) from Beatitude

The Tablado de La Guacha as seen (and heard) from Beatitude

I climbed about 3,000 steps (okay, not nearly that many, but it seemed like it) in a tower on the malecón to take this picture.  Cindy is below in pink.  Beatitude is at the dock in the upper left hand corner.

I climbed about 3,000 steps (okay, not nearly that many, but it seemed like it) in a tower on the malecón to take this picture. Cindy is below in pink. Beatitude is at the dock in the upper left hand corner.

These Pelicans beg for food on La Guancha

These Pelicans beg for food on La Guancha

The source of some of the music.

The source of some of the music.

The malecón, La Guancha

The malecón, La Guancha

On Monday, we rented a car and drove to the Ponce Museum of Art, the largest and finest art museum in the Caribbean. They have an impressive collection of European art as well as that of local artists. And, as a bonus, it only cost $13 for the both of us to get in. After enjoying art of the “fine” variety, we decided to take in some art of the modern film variety. It had been quite some time since we had gone to a movie theater. So, we decided to go to the Caribbean Cinemas in Ponce and see the critically acclaimed “The Revenant.” It was intense! And Leonard DiCaprio deserves to win the Oscar for best actor.

Cindy in the Ponce Museum of Art

Cindy in the Ponce Museum of Art

A Rubens work depicting the head of one of the three kings

A Rubens work depicting the head of one of the three kings

One of my favorite, and most underrated artists, William Bouguereau.

One of my favorite, and most underrated artists, William Bouguereau.

A wall of art with Christian themes

A wall of art with Christian themes

I love this depiction of the expulsion from the Garden: Adam blaming Eve, Eve blaming the serpent, and God not too impressed by it all.

I love this depiction of the expulsion from the Garden: Adam blaming Eve, Eve blaming the serpent, and God not too impressed by it all.

Today, we thought we’d head to McDonald’s for breakfast since it had been a while since I had enjoyed a sausage biscuit for breakfast — those who know me well, know that the McDonald’s sausage biscuit has been my favorite breakfast for many years. What a disappointment! There are no biscuits at the McDonald’s in Puerto Rico! What is wrong with these people!

Do you see any biscuits on this menu?? :)

Do you see any biscuits on this menu?? 🙂

After having been let down for breakfast, we drove to the physical center of Ponce, the Plaza Las Delicias. The main attractions of this plaza are the Parque de Bombas (the famous red and black firehouse built in 1883), and the Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadeloupe, which dominates the plaza. Dating back to 1670, it is has suffered damage from multiple fires and earthquakes. The present building, whose exterior is in the neoclassical style, dates back to 1839.

The famous firehouse in the plaza

The famous firehouse in the plaza

interior of the Parque de Bombas

interior of the Parque de Bombas

The Facade of The Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadeloupe

The Facade of The Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadeloupe

The nave

The nave

The main altar

The main altar

Altarpiece in one of the side chapels

Altarpiece in one of the side chapels

Altarpiece in another small chapel

Altarpiece in another small chapel

Cindy sitting in the rear of the church

Cindy sitting in the rear of the church

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The beautiful fountain in the plaza next to the cathedral

The beautiful fountain in the plaza next to the cathedral

The fountain in the Plaza Las Delicias

The fountain in the Plaza Las Delicias

We plan to enjoy Ponce for a few more days before continuing our eastward trek.

The Ponce Yacht and Fishing Club

The Ponce Yacht and Fishing Club

Most of the Caribbean and Bahamas seem overrun with dogs.  This marina has cats instead.  Here's one of the little fellows.

Most of the Caribbean and Bahamas seem overrun with dogs. This marina has cats instead. Here’s one of the little fellows.

3 thoughts on “Ponce

  1. The NURVE…no biscuits! I bet you were disappointed ! Lol. But the beautiful artwork & artistry in the church made it all worth while

  2. Hi from Luquillo, Puerto Rico! Make sure that you eat ice cream at Kings Cream across from the Ponce Parque de Bombas or you will have missed the best local/tropical flavors on the island. My favorite is coconut, but also almond, guanabana (sour sop) and on and on… Actually, I like them all!!!

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