Summary: Santo Domingo

February 21, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

It’s been a busy but great week in Santo Domingo. I hope you’ve had a nice week too. I’m happy that Lev and I had a fun time together (even though Santo Domingo is not the greatest city) and that I was able to do an excellent job with work despite my español patético.

IMG_1205I last wrote on Monday night. On Tuesday, I worked and met a really nice driver, Agustín. The city is not walkable and it’s not safe to just catch a taxi on the street so this was important. Lev went to the colonial area and learned a ton about the history of the city. After a nice workout at the hotel gym, which is excellent, we went to a restaurant called Don Pepe, recommended by Agustín earlier in the day. It was delicious Spanish food and probably one of the nicest restaurants in the city. We had sausage, pallela, and wine. MMmm.

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On Wednesday, Lev’s birthday, I had some meetings and then in the afternoon we went to a shirt shop where Lev got a chacabana, a kind of local shirt also called guayabera in other Latin American countries. He negotiated the price of the shirt and I was very impressed with the way that all went down. If you were wondering, the shirt in the picture above is not the chacabana.

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That afternoon we also saw a gross crafts market and had delicious ice cream. For dinner we went to Mason de la Cava, a restaurant in a cave. We saw some interesting characters there including a group of young Americans, some people on dates, and some older men with women we assumed were escorts – they all wore tight short white dresses. We ate goat for the second time this week, and it was pretty delicious.

Thursday was another work day for me. For dinner, we had the best dinner at a place called Adrian Tropical that serves local foods. IMG_1239My colleagues who have been here before all recommend the Mofongo, which is fried yucca and meat in a ball of mushed fried stuff. We are trying to figure out if it’s an ongoing practical joke that everyone recommends it, because it’s pretty unappetizing. The other dishes at Adrian Tropical were delicious, in particular the Arroz con Pollo (pretty standard local food) and the ceviche with a flat yucca bread-cracker.

Lev left last night, and today I finished up my work, worked out, and had dinner at the hotel – the normal surveying routine. It was a very special treat to have such wonderful company here. I’m excited to head to Trinidad tomorrow afternoon.

Love, Annie

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