Happy Birthday, Ben ~ Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

We declared it an “Indian” birthday, i.e. one that runs for several days… so it started with fabulous food at a French restaurant in Santo Domingo.

World class ceviche sampling… warm seafood salad (unbelievable!)… and Croquant au Chocolat, all you foodies out there will be drooling… sinful, crispy chocolate chunk, swimming in a yummy sauce…

















We were hoping to go to the beach for our last day on the island, and the French owner, with whom we were chatting, introduced us to another French person in his restaurant. She has a foundation for needy children at a nearby beach and invited us to stay at her sea front guest house, for a $20 donation. So phase two of Ben’s birthday takes us to a Caribbean beach…







































































































We return from the beach by bus, which drops us quite miraculously by Santo Domingo’s small but potent Chinatown.Who would have thought there would be a Chinatown in Santo Domingo?

We beeline to a Chinese store to stock up on Chinese ingredients we cannot get in Nicaragua (Chinese noodles, interesting nuts, chopsticks, oyster sauce…) and then, incredibly, find ourselves in a solid Dim Sum restaurant. Now THAT’s a birthday treat…




























Final birthday surprise, as long as we are in Chinatown, we look for a Chinese holistic medicine practitioner in hope of getting a foot massage. No reflexology for us, but take the opportunity to have him address Peta’s travel-related neck pain (fast motorcycle rides did not help!). He quickly diagnoses the problem and Peta receives her first serious Chinese treatment. The tools of the trade: bamboo suction cups, a 5000 year old Chinese treatment.



We end our stay at this charming hotel, Hostel Nomada… 3rd story roof top terrace, view of the church, Moroccan music in the background…




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