Archive | February 2014

Palacio de Santa Catalina~

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The Palacio in Old San Juan is the oldest continuously occupied executive mansion in the New World. Construction started in 1533. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is currently occupied by the Governor of Puerto Rico and his family. (Please click to enlarge).

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The Palacio is built on a prime ocean view spot in Old San Juan and is surrounded by La Forteleza or the old fort walls.

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The stunning interiors are like stepping into old Spain.

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The gardens are tropical with fruit, vegetables and flowers in abundance. Fountains and tile mosaics abound.

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The views are simply spectacular.
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Adjoining the residence, is El Hospital, la Cofradía de Nuestra Señora de la Concepción, built in 1556 and currently run by catholic nursing nuns for elderly patients.
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I wouldn’t want to be a poltician, but I would love to stay in this house! Saludos a usted!

Encanta la Ciudad Vieja de San Juan~

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Love the Old City of San Juan Puerto Rico!

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It reminds me of an old walled European city.
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But with larger American cars,
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that mess up photos! Laughing…..

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Old San Juan was founded in 1506 by Spain and some of the old buildings, need to be rennovated, which would be so much fun to do!
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Others are meticulously well maintained.
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When I come home everything looks beige by comparison.

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Don’t you love such creative use of color?

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Hope the vibrant architecture of beautiful Old San Juan cheers your day!

Dr. Cats Knoke: The Feral Cat Herder~

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Jim speaks CAT big time. Cats are naturally attracted to him. They must know how much he likes them. For some people, herding feral cats might be problematic, not Jim, and the old city of San Juan is loaded with feral cats.

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Check out Jim herding San Juan’s feral cats! There was no food of any sort involved here. Just Jim, AKA, Dr. Cats Knoke~~

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He meows at them and they come running, even the wild Fishing Cat at The San Diego Zoo does this.
Sweethearts aren’t they?

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Jim’s pretty sweet too, at least the cats, and I think so.

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Before you become profoundly depressed at the prospect of all these cats without homes, take heart. You know I couldn’t leave you (or Jim for that matter) hanging. I had to find out. What is the story about all of these homeless kitty-cats? They are being cared for by a marvelous group of volunteers who call themselves appropriately enough, “Save a Gato!” http://www.saveagato.org or email at SAVEAGATOPR@gmail.com
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We visited them at their center in Old San Juan.

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Check it out.

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Save a Gato’s Mission Statement is, “Save a Gato is dedicated to giving the street cats of Old San Juan a chance at a better life. Using TNR (trap, neuter, return) methods, ‘Save a Gato’ manages a feral cat colony. Cats in the colony are trapped, neutered, and then returned to their territory where volunteers provide them with regular food, medical care and shelter. Young kittens who can be socialized, as well as friendly adults, can be adopted to good homes.”
So if you wanted to adopt a cat, think of “Save A Gato.” They will ship your kitty to you. They accept donations as well. All neutering is paid for by Save a Gato.

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Besides this colony, there are other feral cat colonies in Old San Juan, about every block, some homeowner has cat food and water on their doorstep.
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There are cat lovers in Old San Juan.
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Our hotel has two feral cats in residence. Still there is no way around it, a street kitty is a very sad sight!
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My thanks and gratitude go to “Save A Gato” and all the cat lovers in Old San Juan. Cheers to you from the beautiful, friendly, feral-cats of Old San Juan.

Los Hermosos Arcos de San Juan Puerto Rico~

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Entrance to our hotel, El Convento, originally a Carmelite convent built by Spain in 1646.

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Evening, central Courtyard Hotel El Convento.

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Central Courtyard, Instituto de Cultura Puertorriquena. Puerto Rico was founded by the Spanish in 1521 and is full of stunning, historic-buildings. (Click to enlarge).

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More views of the Instituto Cultura…….

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Front facade Instituto de Cultura.

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La Fortaleza (Governors Mansion). This is the oldest, continuously occupied governors mansion in the Americas. We toured inside and I will post photos for you soon! It is a gorgeous, stunningly-situated, old mansion and a UNESCO World Heritage site.

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El Palacio Rojo. (Now Administrative Offices).

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Museo De Las Americas.

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Typical tourist shop, Calle Fortaleza in the glorious old-buildings of historic San Juan.

Cheers to you from the very old, y muy hermoso, San Juan!

Life’s A Beach~

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At least in the Caribbean it is! Please click to enlarge and check out the beautiful beaches of San Juan Puerto Rico~

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And St Croix…..

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I grew up by the ocean, and get alarmed sometimes at the risks some people take. Look closely in the above shot for the two people standing on the rocks…YIKES!

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And last, but surely not least, Tortola!

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I know it is important to stay out of the sun, but this man’s castle seemed a bit pinched. Still, a man’s beach-castle is never the less his castle and nothing to be trifled with, besides, maybe this was for his kid? I didn’t see the kid though……
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Laughing and sending sun, sand, and silliness, your way from the sunny (but buggy) Caribbean! Even paradise ain’t perfect after all, and I have the no-see-um bites to prove it! Cheers and sunshine to you~