Back to real life in Santo Domingo

  Dominican Republic - January 2009

Dear English-speaking readers, this page is an automatic translation made from a post originally written in French. My apologies for any strange sentences and funny mistakes that may have been generated during the process. If you are reading French, click on the French flag below to access the original and correct text: 

Sunday, visit the capital, Santo Domingo. I was pleased to see the cathedral square, with its shady benches and the terrace of the Hotel El Conde.

Sunday in Santo Domingo

Sunday is calm, very calm, in Santo Domingo.

It was a week ago. We stopped at the capital. After the "must visit" of the colonial city with our guide, we had free time. Finally !

Cathedral Square

I found with pleasure the place of the cathedral, with its lawns, its shady benches, and the terrace of the hotel El Conde. A place I liked a lot, already, during my first trip to the Dominican Republic, nine years ago.

The Dominicans come to take the cool under the trees. There are children running after the pigeons and groups of tourists on a spree. The ice cream vendor is eager for greedy little things. The young guys are eyeing the girls sitting on the next bench.

It is Sunday… domingo in Santo Domingo.

An old man with a beautiful face, wearing a black beret, follows me with his eyes. I see after the box at his feet. It's the shoeshine.

I show my camera, ask him for a gesture if he agrees to the photo. No problem. He raises his thumb to the sky and takes the pose. This guy must serve as a model for all the tourists who pass there ...

Calle El Conde

In calle El Conde, the next street, dedicated to shops and tourism, some shops are still open.

Naïve art paintings display their cheerful colors on the floor. Some sellers are trying to convince me to buy some mamajuana, this fermented alcohol with barks that has a taste of cooked wine.

But no, I go my way and shoot at all the stalls, the people.

It's because my time is running out. We have forty minutes of freedom, before finding our guide. Ah! I'm not used to organized trips, with timed activities ...

I burst out laughing alone in the street, discovering this car riddled, stamped "Prensa" (press). Two of my classmates, who have also been there during our "free neighborhood", have obviously made the same photo ... Irresistible.

Above, the oldest "cafeteria" of Santo Domingo. Not even had time to stop drinking coffee at the counter ... Grrr!

These few minutes of freedom are too fast. I still wanted to hang around a bit, to enjoy the Sunday nonchalance of this beautiful sunny afternoon. But I was wise and disciplined. I joined the group at the appointed time.

I love street scenes. When I'm in a city that I do not know much about, I spot lots of little things that would not have caught my attention in ordinary times. So, I can not resist the pleasure of taking lots of photos ... I do not give you here a very small selection!

Needless to say, I really enjoyed this brief stopover in Santo Domingo, which got us a little out of the "todo-incluido" resorts and closer to real life!


  Dominican Republic - January 2009