The Descent of Man

Published: August 30th 2011
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northern coast route

Science, spearheaded by Darwin, traces the origin of man to a group of hunter-gatherers in the hot and humid cradle of the African savannah. This is probably why we like beaches – because they remind us of our common homeland. After a few days in such weather we can report how the human body conforms perfectly to this theory. Originally, we had different activities planed until we actually arrived to the first beach. The hot and humid air, so much nicer to the skin then the cool dry air-conditioned air in the office, immediately took over our bodies and soles. No longer did we want to DO anything except lay idle on the beach. All our daily activity was degraded into hunting-gathering enough food for our existence - an activity easily achieved in our "savanna" filled with restaurants and cafes. Thank God, and our ape accentors, for opposable thumbs which allowed us to both hold ice-cream and chicken wings. (not in the same time – that’s not Kosher 😊 . Once we gather our breakfast/lunch/dinner we are content in sleeping or playing on the beach. a very simple life that is just how our ape ancestors wanted to live like.

Science also tells us that after leaving the savanna humankind took only a few thousand years to populate the earth from South-Africa to South-America to the Caribbean to Polynesia . The motivation, to the best of our understanding from our experiment in the Dominican Republic, was probably in search of the next perfect beach without any human footprints previously tramping on it – or if not possible, at least with a nice Irish pub at its end. This was our main motivation of getting into the car and driving onward.

Matching Expectations

When going to the Caribbean one must make sure that everyone in the family has the right expectations. Liya for example, accepted on the flight over– with a bit of skepticism - the fact that there will be no snow on this vacation. What we forgot to mention to her was that there will be beaches. Lots of beaches. Both she and us were thus very surprised on the first day when we made a pit stop on a small and beautiful secluded beach on the way to our first beach-front hotel. She gave one look at the beach declared that she does not like beaches and that we should now go and find a new activity. She then unilaterally decided not to go within 100m of the beach. "End of story".

Any step toward the beach of ANY family member resulted in hysterical crying. Especially worried her was Ariel's well-being. The minute he stepped in the water she yelled for us to protect him from drowning and take him out "this instant".

No amount of persuasion helped – we might as well have gone looking for snow in the Caribbean as an alternative to going to the sea.

We spent the next few beach visits (of which there were 2 or 3 each day) to slowly but deliberately acquaint Liya to the fun of the beach. First step-sitting on the sand with the back to the sea so she will not see how Ariel crashes himself into the waves. The next step was getting wet while building sand castle , from water we brought over from the sea in a bottle. After a couple of days of effort most of her fears have been mostly removed and she can now run around chasing Ariel in and out of the sea…Until a loud wave comes along and then she become "tiered" and wants to go to the hotel to sleep. Luckily, we have a couple of more weeks to work on the beach thing.

Killer Coconuts

Coconut trees are perfectly slanted. The 1st row of trees are always slated toward the beach creating perfect shade for beach-goers. The 2nd row of trees are always slanted away from the beach creating perfect shade for the car.

I suspect they are not as naive as they appear.

I suspect Coconut trees for doing this on purpose.

Every year 5 or 6 people die in the DR from falling coconuts. Probably while sitting in the shade near a beach. And the insurance coverage of our car did not cover falling coconuts on the roof. I suspect that the coconut trees and the car-rental agencies are in cohorts to scam money out of innocent tourists.
Beware of the coconuts!

Additional photos below
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Sunrise over Las TerrenasSunrise over Las Terrenas
Sunrise over Las Terrenas

with the help of jet lag i could again check which is nicer sunset or sunrise. sunset always wins :)

4AM, the children are ready to fly. Ariel eating an apple from the lounge and Liya dancing

Liya has become an expert traveler. She entered the plane and without confusion strapped on the seat belt, opened the folding tray and waited for her food. with some careful planing fn sleep we managed to get by with almost no jet lag
Bahia Escondido near SamanaBahia Escondido near Samana
Bahia Escondido near Samana

This is the little beach where we first met the Caribbean sea
Bahia Escondido near SamanaBahia Escondido near Samana
Bahia Escondido near Samana

Liya keeping a safe distance to the sea
Bahia Escondido near SamanaBahia Escondido near Samana
Bahia Escondido near Samana

Ariel's first encounter with the sea
Horseback ridingHorseback riding
Horseback riding

The whole experience was much more rodeo then horseback riding Hagit crossing a river with Ariel - on the way to El Limon Waterfall.
Crossing the streamCrossing the stream
Crossing the stream

Returning from a wonderful dip in the clear water at the base of the waterfall
Liya getting acquainted to the sandLiya getting acquainted to the sand
Liya getting acquainted to the sand

Ariel in the background on his way to take a dip

30th August 2011

Wow, how wondeful
Thank you, bloggers, for sharing these experiences with us. Have fun, and keep writing.

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