As you know from last week’s post, during our recent trip to Puerto Rico, Bill, Dylan and I decided to go on a camping trip to Seven Seas, Fajardo, with my brother Jadit and my sister-in-law Arleane. After the park district turned on a light post right above our campsite, we all retired to our tents, hoping for a good night’s sleep despite the brightness around us.
Around 3:00 am, Jadit and Arleane were woken up by a flashlight being shone on their faces. It was the lady from the campsite next to ours, informing my brother that someone had broken into the parking lot and smashed both their car windows. They all went to explore the damage and found out the vandals had taken the lady’s wallet from the car, but luckily nothing was taken from Arleane’s car. We were extremely lucky, because Bill had left his laptop in the car, and since he works independently, his laptop is his life. He quickly retrieved it from the backseat and brought it into our tent.
Terrified that the vandals were going to come back and steal from us as we slept (or worse), I locked the zipper of the tent with a luggage lock and pretty much kept vigil for the rest of the night, jumping at every little noise and trying to forget about the oppressive heat inside the tent. At 5 am I gave up all pretense of sleep and stepped out of the tent. Because there was a widespread Dengue fever epidemic going on in the island – and Dengue is spread by mosquitoes – I sprayed myself with OFF, turned on a citronella candle, and read for a while in the hammock before falling asleep.
Two hours later, as I opened my eyes to Dylan’s “Wake up, wake up, Mami!” I looked down at my legs and couldn’t believe my eyes. I was COVERED with mosquito bites from the knees down. Despite all of my precautions, they had devoured me! As I looked around our tent for some Vick’s to put on my bites and Jadit and Arleane headed out to talk to the Seven Seas authorities about the previous nights’ incident, Bill announced that he was going to go for an early morning swim.
A little while later, Bill retuned, an angry red mark adorning the back of his leg. “Something bit me,” he said. Instantly, I felt weak. All week long we’d been hearing reports of a poisonous new species of fish on Puerto Rico beaches. Convinced Bill had been stung by this lion fish, I kept a careful watch over him, asking him how he felt over and over again despite his assurances that I was being ridiculous and that other than a slight burning sensation, he felt fine. After about an hour, seeing that he was still alive and well, we figured he’d probably been stung by a jellyfish and would probably survive.
Meanwhile, the people at Seven Seas really stepped up and took responsibility for the break-in. Within a few hours after Jadit submitted his report, they arranged and paid for the installation of a brand new car window for him. Relieved that the ordeal was finally over, Jadit announced he was going for a dip in the ocean…
(Continues next week)