Dominican Republic
July 2, 2016

On Day 2, the first order of business was sleeping in late to make up for a lack of shut eye the night before. The accomodation at the Gran Principe Bahia features 63 villas with 12 rooms in each. The rooms are quite spacious and air-conditioned, with coffeemakers, stocked fridges and TV with over 100 channels, including about a dozen English language ones. It is almost a mile from the lobby down to the beach, so there are three shuttle routes going back and forth between them.

The breakfast buffet featured lots of fresh pineapple, mango, papaya and other fruit, including fresh banana juice and other juices as well, plus varieties of bread, crepes, pancakes, eggs, potatoes, and mounds of bacon everyday. After breakfast, and after booking a couple of tours for the week, it was back to the room for awhile and then down to the beach. Some members of our group were kind enough to reserve reclining chairs by the beach, so most members of the group spent a bit of time sunning themselves by the water and then taking a dip in the not-at-all-cold ocean. Plus, there was a parrot and a monkey.

You might notice in the distance off the beach what looks like two boats (see page 2 panoramic). It is the remains of a Russian cargo ship, the Esmeralda, later called the Astron, which ran aground during a storm in 1978, and currently sits in about 16 metre deep water.

The buffet dinner featured Spanish dancers and a huge variety of foods to choose from. The Michael Jackson Show at 9:15 p.m. at their Tropicana Theatre showcased an actor/dancer quite skilled at moon walking and other Michael Jackson moves. Songs included Billie Jean, Beat It, Thriller, Bad, The Way You Make Me Feel, Smooth Criminal and a few overly sappy ones from his later period, and it was the most elaborate show of the week.

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