Playa Ponce

Published: September 7th 2008
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This is Labor Weekend, here it is called Dia del Trabajador (Day of the worker).
There is a tradition in Ponce for this weekend. It is called Cruce Nado. Basically, there is an organization that puts on a swim crossing from Isla Cardona to Playa Ponce. This is the small island to the West of the channel coming in. 16 countries participated this year. The organization lines up "Lanchas" ( small power boats) to take the swimmers out to the island, then they swim to the shore. There is a small park in front of the Customs building with steps going down to the sea.
We watched with anticipation, it is a 2 1/2 mile swim in open waters, with depths to 50 feet. The lanchas pick up those that get into problems or give up. This year was the 28th anniversary.
The weekend started with the "Vejigantes" comparsas, (mask parade or carnival).
So Friday night, we loaded up the sailors waiting the season here into the truck (Ranger 150 that has been lent to us for our duration here.) We drove to the Beach area (no beach here but they call it Playa Ponce...). We walked around to familiarize ourselves with the area. The Veterans building was were the Vejigantes were assembling, next to the Customs building.
Pete's legs were bothering him, we found someone we new, who had set up a Kioske, and had chairs. We told Pete to stay there while we took pictures and inspected some more of the area.
I heard some percussion instruments with a song I new, Al carnaval de Oriente me voy ...and so on, I started singing, yeah me, can you believe singing at the top of my lungs? Then my feet and body started to dance to the rhythm. Hmmmm, someone comes up to me in full mask uniform, says are you Cuban? yeah, 100 per cent but raised in the US. That was that, they hauled me into the group, and dancing away I went down the streets of La Playa. I finally broke away, I needed to take more pictures. And then go back to check on Pete.
The Vejigantes parade was to be a Guinness World of Record, not sure if they made it... But we had a blast! Will post pictures.
Saturday was a quit day....Sunday was the swim at 1600, we went by dinghy.
Monday everyone
Forgot his name...Forgot his name...Forgot his name...

Children are included
was tired, and was a day of rest except for the usual domino games.

Additional photos below
Photos: 5, Displayed: 5



They are made with old newspapers, flour and water, and then painted.

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