Dominican Essentials, part 1

Decoding the Dominican Republic The Finger Wag This is one of the most valuable gestures I learned for dealing with Dominicans. If you are in public and a Dominican tries to shine your shoes or sell you something, just saying “no”, shaking your head, or walking away will not work. They will…

What Country Am I In?

My life in the States is like many others who are middle-income and raising children. I wake up early to get my kids on the school bus. I work hard when they are in school. After school I juggle their activities, my remaining work and dinnertime. Bedtime finally comes and after I…

Third World Perspective

Above: The Colonial Zone in Santo Domingo during a blackout (apagone). It is rather ironic for me to being here in the Dominican Republic, a country which has its share of hurricanes each year and see news of Hurricane Sandy devastating the Northeastern United States, the part of the world I grew…

Wet Night, Sunny Morn

Last night we went out to meet the Tamil/Dominican couple we first got to know on my last visit. The power went out yesterday about noon and as of 7:00 it still had not returned. So we had to get ready in the dark, using the flashlight from my cell phone to…

Flying Above A Storm

After five hours of killing time in San Juan Airport, a feat which was harder than expected, it was finally time to board the flight to Santo Domingo. The contrast was immediate as soon as I stepped on to the plane — whereas the flight from Jacksonville to San Juan was basically…