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It has just been over three months since we acquired our house on Vieques. Sometimes it seems like yesterday but there has been a lot of water under the bridge as the saying goes. Here is a quick list of what I have learned.
- The utilities (Water, Power, and Telephone) seem slightly more reliable than the ferry.
- The logistics of getting items delivered can be taxing. But I now know that Sears delivers, and that there are people who will shop on the island and bring the stuff back for you.
- If you call the Home Depot in Carolinas, and press 8 for English you will be disconnected EVERY time. But that if you listen to the Spanish options and can decipher and follow the instructions to be connected to the Pro Desk and ask for Rodney, you will receive top-notch and competent service.
- Sol Foods is as good or better than people claim.
- That Vieques is starting to become greener with recycling campaigns emerging.
- That transplanted gringos that have become aware of our real estate purchase have been more than willing to help out and are a very welcoming lot.
- That the staff at Nales are very helpful and setting up an account for you contractor makes things much simpler.
- Just because you itemize the colour of your house in detail and even write the proposed colours on all the walls, does not ensure that your house isn’t painted Aztec Red instead of Harvest Gold.
- Aztec Red can be covered up by Harvest Gold in less than 24 hours.
- Canadians cannot open a bank account at Banco Popular unless of course your contractor drives you to the bank and orchestrates an impromptu meeting to get it done. Thanks Panama.
- There are land crabs on my property and It has been explained to me that they are very tasty and warned by others that they can be deadly. I think I will pass on crab cakes for now.
- Al’s Mar Azul have a weekly Karaoke night and if you pay close attention, Doc and the gang usually declare a special word for the night. This is a little secret amongst the staff but if you listen carefully you will hear them interlacing the special mystery word into the lyrics. I witnessed a rousing rendition of “I have GRAVY on my mind”, one evening and I am pretty sure all the patrons were oblivious to the fact that Georgia was always replaced with Gravy.
- If you end up at the hospital for any reason, bring a blanket. It is freezing in there.
- Once you shop at the various supermarkets and local gourmet store several times, you will discover that you can buy just about anything you want and that the prices are reasonable.
- That if you trust your contractor, and lean on the Bravos Boyz as your local eyes, good things can happen. Even if they sometimes happen slowly.