When we woke up the day after the hike, we felt like we had been body-slammed and then run over by a semi-trailer…….which then hit reverse to run back over us to make sure that we were totally crushed! I can categorically say that I have never felt that kind of pain before in my life, and I have participated in several other walks and hikes. When I got up, the pain in my calves was unbearable, and it took a couple of days of R ‘n’ R (rest and relaxation) to start feeling human again. Needless to say, these two days, were filled with eating, watching TV and seriously short distance walking.
We lived to tell the tale, however, and on day 3, we felt human again, and capable of venturing out into the world! A couple of days earlier we had chatted to “Negro”a moto-concho (motor bike) driver who told us that he did tours to the local waterfalls, so we took him up on it. That day was pleasantly spent visiting Jimenoa Waterfall 1, Jimenoa Waterfall 2 and Baiguate Waterfall. They were all pretty, but our favourite was Jimenoa Waterfall 1, which was a bit of a walk to get to, but with rewarding views. We actually had to cross a series of suspension bridges to get to Jimenoa Waterfall 2, before the climb to the first one.
It was time to move on, so after our day of relaxing amongst several waterfalls, we made our way to Constanza, also in the country’s interior and not far from Jarabacoa. Here we stayed at a beautiful little hotel called “Vista del Valle” (View of the Valley) for a couple of days, and simply observed local life. We met a terrific Dominican in the hotel called Hugo, who was there for work, and we spent several hours sitting on the balcony chatting.
Finally, it was time to go back to Santo Domingo, as we had a plane to catch to Miami. We spent a night in the capital before flying out. Hugo, the guy we met in Constanza, had a few days work in the capital, so he swung by with his family to say hello! Luckily our flight was at 2.40pm in the afternoon, so we were able to look for an alternative to the USD $26.00 – $30.00 taxi ride to the airport. After a bit of investigation, we were able to catch two local buses and a moto -concho each! The Ombi and Alex total coming to about USD $5.50, and that was including tipping the moto- concho drivers! OK so we were a little crammed in the bus, a little sweaty too, and they really made far too many stops. But what a feeling to ride a motorbike, with back packs on our backs, hair blowing in the wind, ocean views surrounding us……. and then pull into the airport like this! Ahhhhh, this is the simple life! Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton got it all wrong!
Until next time, Ombi.
“Falling in love with the Earth is one of life´s geatest adventures”…….Steve Van Matre
(Photos: 1. View of Jarabacoa 2. “Negro”, Ombi & Alex riding towards the falls 3. Jimenoa Waterfall No.One 4. Our ride towards Abanico, going back to Santo Domingo 5. Hugo with wife Fatima, and children Chantal & Hugo in Santo Domingo.)