Sunday, April 13, 2014

Monday in the DR

 Sunday night we said goodbye to all the new friends we met while in the Dominican Republic. Thankfully most of them have facebook so we'll still be able to keep in touch...YAY! While I was out walking the last morning I saw horses at the end of this island. As I walked closer I actually saw TONS of them all along the way. Most of them were tied to trees.

 this was on the other side of the wall beside our resort

 saying farewell to the big hole

last pics at the resort

 time to board the bus

 the view once you enter the resort...and where we had all of our bible studies

 this picture makes me sad:(.  it would've been PERFECT if the photographer knew how to zoom out on the lens or get everyone in. this was our only group picture (other than the one at the airport on day one)

 We headed to the Capitol city for some shopping and a History lesson.
 first up was the shopping. it reminded brian and I of being in Korea!
 these are traditional masks used for parades, etc.
some of them were quite scary looking!

 Brian and his machete. Goodness did he love that thing!  He DID end up bringing one home too...and
has played/looked?? at it everyday since we've come! It makes me laugh to see how much he loves his machete.
 take a picture of me, mommy!

 After getting souvenirs we got back on the bus for lunch and drove to another area. Lora saw a place outside selling cinnamon and sugar things but it turned out to be something stuffed with cheese...fried and bought off the street:)

 this picture is for Ephram and makes me smile. Every time we saw a one way or stop (PARE) sign I thought of him.
 we saw GORGEOUS architecture but there wasn't anything that didn't have power lines attached to it.
 Cailey learned who Michael Jackson was...and what he did when he performed...grabbing certain body parts. Great lesson.

 I LOVED the lamp posts and cobblestone roads. 

 this was the first church built there.
 the kids had fun posing like Christopher Columbus

 this girl and her animals:). she had bread in her hand and was covered in pigeons. thankfully Steve let her borrow his hat so she didn't have to risk getting poop in her hair.

 Hard Rock Cafe...Dominican

 there were so many cool doorways
 so so beautiful

 Oh! I forgot about this group picture...yay!

 this was the fort built way back (clearly my Dominican History isn't great)
 looking in

 building across from the fort
 loved the old buildings!

 This building was used to hold their eternal flame and the tombs of important soldiers.

 it was beautiful inside
 eternal flame

 as we walked back towards the bus we were able to look out and see ships in the harbor

 and old canons

 again...SO gorgeous! the day was perfect

 there were boys who would run up and try and 'polish' Brian's crocs. yup. crocs. He was able to say no thank you and get away then they ran to Brian M. and succeeded in polishing his tennis shoes. good times.
 I learned how to tell time using a sun dial!

 on the side of these walls were very small prison cells open to the weather. i imagine it would have been a very miserable place to be. our kids, however, enjoyed trying them out.
 Cailey and Dominic up on top 

After our tour of the city we went back on the bus and drove to the airport.

 Our flight was at 4:00 (we got there a little early at 1:30). We were planned to have a three hour layover in Miami and were praying that would be enough time to get through customs there and run to the plane.

When we checked in we saw that our flight was delayed until 5:50 and knew we'd be missing our connecting one.
 Little by little the flight kept getting pushed back and the plane still hadn't left Miami because of mechanical problems. Things were not looking good for us to leave the DR but everyone was laid back about the whole thing...even me! (shocking, I know)

 This picture has a story. Jeremy was protecting us while the dads were standing in line to change tickets.
 The girls were singing Frozen songs as we waited to find out what was going to happen.

We decided that if we didn't fly out of the DR that night then we'd sleep in the airport to fly out at 5:30am so we could get the connecting flight in Miami at 10:30. I literally thought we'd be sleeping there and somehow was totally at peace with it. I've seen enough Amazing Race to know it would just be another adventure.

 Our plane FINALLY left Miami (Yay!) and we would get to leave...sometime after 10:00pm. (Just six hours later than planned). Miami planned to get us hotel rooms, food vouchers, and transportation.

We were all pretty tired at this point and tried to get some sleep on the plane. The one up side to arriving so late in Miami was not having to wait in long customs lines. We got through pretty quickly then found our luggage and got our hotel/food/transportation vouchers.

 thanks for organizing all the vouchers, Nick!

 the adventures continued (sadly) after we we outside to load the shuttles. Lora accidentally grabbed the wrong suitcase BUT she was a super hero and somehow got back through (the exit doors) and fixed the problem. THEN the shuttle took us WAY out of the way to the WRONG hotel. Yup. So we all loaded the shuttle again and were finally taken to the right one.

 checking in at 1:45 am

the room was super nice...and the water didn't scald OR freeze us. the pressure was awesome. Es MUY bueno:). We got our stuff ready for the next day, rearranged the suitcase and crashed for four hours.

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