Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Vacation - Part 5, The Big Ending

It was time to drive home, after spending 3 days in the capitol, and finally feeling like I'd forgiven Papi for drinking, albeit, not trusting that it wouldn't happen again.

You can never trust an active alcoholic to tell you the truth.  That trust is built with time.

Upon leaving the hotel, we were told of a new route.

It was a new road that was straight, safe and not many people traveled, so not many chances of an accident.

It was barren alright.  It had us worried about the possibility of breaking down, as there wasn't a store, a person, nor any help anywhere.

We had a little anxiety about cars breaking down since we traded in the jalopy, even though this newer car worked well.  We were still gun shy.

At the first of 3 toll booths, we found the ONLY gas station on the highway.  We filled our tank full, and at that same time, I also filled up on the best tasting ribs I'd ever experienced.

When I'm nervous, I gorge.

Oh, I ate those scrumptious delicacies and even shared a little with Sir Bark-A-Lot, forcing us to suffer the wrath of his bowels assaulting us with his stench 30 minutes later.

After a few hours, we got to the end of the stretch of highway with not a soul in sight, but then had the daunting task of finding our way home.

We were hours away.

We didn't take the turn off we needed, because true to any developing country, most people driving know the roads and know which donkey to turn left at, hence there are no signs.

We were now driving for another hour, realizing we were probably lost.

Stopping at a gas station to fill up again, we had hopes that the guy could tell us how to get home.  It seemed like we had someone who knew what he was talking about.

He told us to go back the way we came and take the Las Terrenas exit.

We found it, then realized all roads led us to nowhere, in circles, winding back up where we started from, further from our house.

We decided that the guy obviously didn't know what he was talking about and headed back toward him to pass him by and carry on for a while.  It was now 2 in the morning as we passed familiar landmarks we had already seen, but we needed to find someone to help us.

Papi was way too tired, and needed me to drive.  No problem.  There doesn't seem to be anyone who will stop me to check if I have a license.

We wound up in a city called Samaná.  It was a mind fuck.  Every street was a circle and we couldn't get out.

We kept winding up in the same place we started, just like in Las Terrenas, even though we tried every avenue we could find.  The only one left was the one we came in on, and that wasn't an option.  We weren't driving 5 hours back to the capitol.

There were some people drinking at the side of the road, and I did my best, 'I'm tough don't fuck with me, but I need your help' attitude.

They were indeed good people and we followed them as they drove their motorcycle out of the city to help us leave.  Again, we were heading back to the capitol, but with a switch.

We had to turn off at a city called Nagua.  Oh, I drove.  For another hour.

By the time we reached this city, Papi had been snoring for at least 30 minutes, and the car started to overheat.  As it just reached red, I put the car into neutral, hazard lights on and coasted for a while.

It seemed to do the trick.  The arm lowered.  But I was scared shitless that we were going to be stuck, and had I started to get bleary eyed and tired, so I woke Papi.

"Can you drive?  I'm starting to fall asleep at the wheel."

It was 4 a.m. when he looked at his watch, slurring tired words, "Pull over, we're sleeping at the side of the road."

We've been told NEVER to do this, but what was our option?  To fall asleep at the wheel and kill ourselves?  At this point, we'd been driving for about 9 hours and didn't care if someone robbed and beat us.  We just needed to sleep.

We found a nice little graveyard and across the street was a gate that looked like it belonged to people with money.

They would understand two gringos passed out in their driveway, I'm sure.

6:30 a.m. came, I woke up with neck and back pain from hell, then looked behind our car, noticing that the gate was open, and the owners allowed us to keep sleeping.  We definitely chose the right house.

We actually made it home an hour later to the Dominican Daddy and the Housemaid both petrified as to what had happened to us, both wide awake waiting for us to return and release them from their job of protecting Casa Paraíso.

Return we did.

From now on, we take The Moca, even if it is the most terrifyingly treacherous road in the country.

We need a vacation from our mini-vacation, but true to our adventure here, that is not going to happen.

i follow my dreams no matter what

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