Exploring Puerto Rico
It’s no surprise I’ve taken a liking to Puerto Rico. I mean, I have always been attracted to beaches, palm trees, and tropical weather. I had two-out-of-three while living out in Los Angeles, and again two-out-of-three while living back home in Argentina. But, in heavenly Puerto Rico, I have three-of-three, plus a boricua girlfriend by my side to explore The Island with.
Don’t get me wrong, New York is my city, and Brooklyn is my home, that won’t change anytime soon, but my seasonal get-aways to La Isla del Encanto have been my sanctuary. This trip to Puerto Rico in particular has been the most reflective and restorative. In just a few days I have been able to restore my mind to write more, learn more, explore more, live more, and just plain work harder. I always knew the bright sun and this type of setting were my energizers, but these past few days in Puerto Rico have further proved it.
“This trip to Puerto Rico in particular has been the most reflective and restorative. In just a few days I have been able to restore my mind to write more, learn more, explore more, live more, and just plain work harder.”
One of my favorite explorations this time around has been our day trip to Cayey, about an hour drive South of where we usually venture (Dorado Beach and San Juan). The drive up to the Cayey Mountains was reminiscent of my drives up the slim, swirling roads to Villa Nougués in my hometown of Tucumán, Argentina. With hints of mountain range views seeping through the thick trees lining the road, cars passing us down the mountain too close for comfort, small pit stops along the way made up of random shops or restaurants that shouldn’t thrive there, and a finish line that will take your breath away no matter how many times you make it there. Once at our location, now on a high peak above the rolling hills of central Puerto Rico, it is hard to hate the nerve-wracking drive up—or even remember the near-death experience.
We did the trip up with two local photographers, Marisol Pesquera (@marisol.pesquera) and Harold Camilo (@haroldcamilo). Marisol was shooting Alex (@itsalexdvorak) for the local high-end boutique, Escarcha (@escarchapr), while Harold was the location expert.
Luckily, I was tasked with the easy job of exploring and enjoying myself. Let’s just say that I did my part—for the team. I sat on the side of a cliff, got behind-the-scenes shots of their photo shoot, snapped a bunch of photos of Las Tetas de Cayey (some even with the much-loved LomoChrome Purple—coming soon), and took a few moments to take it all it and reflect. I was surrounded by nature and it was overwhelming how beautiful and restorative it all was. I was outside my world, in a new surrounding that showed me why I love to live. I remember what exploring feels like, I remember the humble beginnings I come from through similar surroundings, I remember why living like this changes my energy and changes my attitude. Most importantly, I remembered why I enjoy the greener life, and why, even though I emerge myself within a concrete city, I can still live this life in the hustle-and-bustle of New York City—if I really care to, it’s easy.
With palm trees in sight I automatically feel like a new person. I quickly forget work bullshit, people who’ve wasted valuable time, and anything—anything at all—bringing me down. Of course, I couldn’t ask for a better person to have by my side during these trips. Alex understands me like no one else has and can change my mood like the palm trees and the sun do. But there’s something about the beach life, the nature of this island, the colors and the warmth, and the shining sun that regenerates my head and my heart in such a way that no other place can. Now, my challenge is keeping this energy alive while back at home, but honestly, when I see the results and the outcome of simply changing my attitude, it’s dumb not to let it ride. So, let it ride.
I urge you to take the short (and cheap-ish) trip down to Puerto Rico. The island’s abundant natural locations will no-doubt restore you and remind you of the pure Earth and a pure life. Go enjoy a pure experience.
— Nahuel F.A.