Hello Droogz and Diamonds!
I wanted to blog the first time I went to Puerto Rico. Before I can tell about my first time there. I wanted to tell you guys about where I am from.
I am a Puerto Rican American. For all of those who are confused let me explain. Yes, Puerto Rico is the commonwealth of the United States. We have limited rights as American Citizens. So, I get this all the time on why I tell people I am Puerto Rican American. My Mother was born in Aguadilla. It is located on the top left corner of the map. My father is from San Juan, which is the capital of the Island. Since both my parents were born on the Island and I was born in New York, I am considered a Puerto Rican American. If my parents were born in the United States I would be considered American.
My grandfather (who is my mother’s father) and I went to Aguadilla for two weeks during the Christmas holidays. My mother side is from Aguadilla. It is mostly known for the beaches. Surfers go to Aguadilla because the waves are better than any other place on the island. Aguadilla is also known for Parque Acuático Las Cascadas. It’s a modern aquatic theme park, the biggest in the Caribbean and The Crash Boat.
My first time ever going to Puerto Rico, I was 12 years old. I was really nervous and excited. It was my first time ever on a plane and I didn’t have anxiety then. If I go to a plane now, I don’t think it would be as soothing as it was the last time.
When I got to Puerto Rico, the climate change was a breath of fresh air for two weeks. Meeting family for the first time was an exciting moment in my life. One thing I can remember coming to Puerto Rico was the drive from the airport. If you’re going to Aguadilla you would go to Rafael Hernandez airport. Leaving the airport all I can remember is was the trees. I am from The Bronx, Not even Pelham Bay Park had beautiful trees like Puerto Rico did.
Christmas in Aguadilla is extremely different in The Bronx. My aunt and the rest of the neighborhood literally decorated the whole block. At night, It was nothing but Christmas lights. Every bright, beautiful and extremely creative. The neighborhood would chip in to throw a block party. The neighborhood would hire a band, cook food and have drinks. It was a difference between Puerto Rican and American culture.
The food- I will never ever forget it. If you’re going to the food court or going to places like McDonalds or Burger King the meals are called Combo. Instead of saying “Can I have the number 3 meal” you would say “Quiero el numero tres combo” (Please forgive me, my Spanish isn’t that great) Chicken Spots: Three piece chicken with fries, bread, small mash and a soda $3.50 (I kid you not). The home cooked food. There is a huge difference with food made by a Puerto Rican in American than a Puerto Rican from Puerto Rico. Down to the seasoning is different. Unless Grandma or Great Grandma is giving you the right recipes, the food is different.
Desserts- There is one that I will forever love. In New York there is a stand called Delicioso Coco Helado. What it is a frozen dessert cart. It comes with all different types of flavors such as Coco, Cherry, Mango, Rainbow, Tamarind and other special flavors. In Aguadilla, there is a shop that sells frozen desserts just like Delicioso cart company except with more flavors. Flavors you wouldn’t think of like… Corn. Yes a corn frozen dessert. Let me say how delicious it was. It was sweet and buttery. With Cinnamon added to the mix it was better than frozen dessert I have tried in New York by far.
Drinks- Since I was only 12 I can only speak about Virgin Pina Coladas. I couldn’t have Coquito.
I met family members, I heard stories about my family to which you can read in this post by clicking here.
Sightseeing- Unfortunately in both times I was in Puerto Rico I really didn’t get to sight-see a lot but I would love to in the future. There is one that I was fortunate to see and it’s a monument with a face of a Taino entering Isabella.
My first Trip ever out of the country, was the best experience of my life. It made me appreciate and learn things about Puerto Rican culture. It was an amazing experience to which I would love to take my daughter for her to experience the culture and know her roots from her family.
Anyone who hasn’t been to the country of their roots I recommend going unless if its not safe to go then that’s understandable.
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