Hola República Dominicana

Where the Senors are cool and Senoritas pretty as wild flowers.

The sun was sparing no quarters. A roaring river of sweat made its way between my eyes and nose and headed towards my neck. Humidity was high. Almost like Malaysia I thought. That was until she called out with a charming lilt “Buenas dias”.


Buenas días Senorita! I replied. I always wanted to say that. Ever since watching Speedy Gonzales, habla espaniole was always high on my list of things to do. Quite easy to do at the first capital of the new world, Santo Domingo.


She continued at me in a stream of fast pace Spanish. I nodded with understanding even though I didn’t. I had a secret weapon so I was not worried. When she finally finished, I said fluently albeit with a flat intonation, “Realmente no puedo hablar español. Solo aprendí unas frases de una página web” (I can not really speak Spanish. I just learned some phrases from a website).


She laughed. Fifth time I tried that line. Same result.


Language covered, dancing next. Bachata anyone?

The Last Stand

The last soldier of Carthage...

There stands a pillar. Defiant and strong. A symbol of might.


Once the pillar was part of an empire so vast and so powerful that even invincible Rome threaded carefully. Under its shade, the legendary conqueror Hannibal ruled. This was mighty Carthage. Kings tremble and emperors quake when Carthage goes to war. On the pillar’s shoulders, a super power thrived. This was where mighty men walked and lesser ones came to be judged. It was the glory years of an age long past.


Today, the rain falls incessantly on it. Mocking its pride. Eroding its strength. Sapping away the last remnants of its age. The pillar which once evoked awe and wonder stands on its final leg. The rain knows this. It whispers to the wind. And the wind roars with murder. Trees are uprooted. The sea is riled. Waves with enormous height threatens the shore. And yet the pillar stands.


Heartbroken. Lonely. But still defiant. Still strong.