Friday, March 27, 2009

tonight at Ola Lola's

I guess it had to happen eventually. Ola Lola's is closed - JUST FOR TONIGHT - because of illness. We have an unexpected, very unwelcome sick-y stomach virus thing roaring through the household. Elaine got it first, then me. Now Amy has it.

So to avoid passing it on, and to give ourselves a little recovery time, we are closed tonight.

It's a downside to being a tiny business owner - the only way to call in sick is to close the door.


But we'll see you all tomorrow!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Last weekend at Ola Lola's

We helped Sharon celebrate her birthday. Tequila shots for everybody! This party eventually adjourned to the beach for a big bonfire. Sorry we missed that but by the time we closed - somewhat later than our stated 9:00 pm closing time - we were just to tired to make it. Ah, well. Next bonfire. If anybody has pictures from the bonfire, we'd love to see them and post them. Happy Birthday, Sharon!

There is always this discussion: did Darryl sing with the band or did he not? He says "No pictures, no DNA, never happened!" Well, we finally have proof. Here's Darryl sittin' in with Spontaneous Combustion. They're from Arizona so we only gt them once a year when they visit the island. But we love it when they're here. They are REALLY good! Thanks, guys. We're looking forward to next year already. Oh, and Kelly - you're welcome to come play ANYtime. You don't have to wait to sit in with the guys.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Rincon Lighthouse

I've been trying to get this post up for days but with one thing and another...

I finally got a chance to KAP the lighthouse down in Rincon. Didn't do as well as I want to - the wind was slightly offshore and the space between trees and fences was pretty narrow to maneuver in. I would prefer to shoot from the other side of the lighthouse so the ocean is the background but I just couldn't get the kite around to that side.

I'm not really complaining mind you. This is a pretty cool image and one of my first "close encounter with an immovable object" KAP photos. And I learned alot. And, it gives me an excuse to go back to Rincon to shoot some more. Next time I'll launch from the parking lot.

There are more photos from this shoot on Flickr. Check 'em out.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Limerick Challenge - Winner!

Last night everyone had fun with the first-ever Ola Lola Limerick Challenge. The rules were fairly simple - 1) write your original limerick down and give to John by 8 pm; 2) keep it appropriate for families and friends at Ola Lola's 3) can be about any subject.

Elaine read the 16 entries (4 of which were emailed to us) aloud without stating the author's name just before 9 pm. All 16 entries were humorous and enjoyed by everyone listening.

First place - "People's Choice" as demonstrated by laughter and clapping - was unanimous. However, the winning limerick was about one of our patrons and friends (who gracefully took the somewhat dodgy rhyme in good humor) and we have decided it's best we don't publish it. The 2 authors of the winning limerick, Marisol and Darryl, were each given a t-shirt.

The second place limerick - written by Jill, Anne, Victoria and Christen, law students from Yale who originally proposed the limerick challenge - was also clearly a favorite. They too won an Ola Lola t-shirt. (The limerick can best be appreciated by those of our friends who have been to Ola Lola's and driven by when we're not open.)
Travelers from near and far
Come to Ola Lola's Garden Bar.
They relax and drink,
And sit there and think,
We're so glad they moved the car!
Third place limerick, written by Elaine, was as follows:
Ola Lola's a fav' of surfers all right -
Got the friendliest wave on the island in sight.
Not a wave you can ride,
But sit down by its side,
And you can be in the barrel all night.
So there you have it. Loads of fun and some very creative writing...may be an event we have to repeat!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Little Big Gifts

One of my favorite movies is "Little Big Man." (If you haven't seen it, it's worth it...Dustin Hoffman plays a guy whose life is full of adventure and who has affected many others, usually for the better, although this is probably not how many would describe it.)

Anyway, this past couple of weeks have been full of "Little Big Gifts." Today, for example, is our son Steve's 28th Birthday! Happy happy joy joy Steve! We love you and miss you!

Also last week we were helped by a man who is a virtual stranger (introduced to us through a mutual friend) who came with us and helped us get a business permit that has taken us almost a year to acquire. On the day that we had an appointment to meet him at the ARPE office, we started out and our car began to chug and act like it was going to quit at any time. We talked it over, called our mechanic (he suggested we pull over and check for live rodents in the air intake, which we did), and decided to try to make it to Aguadilla and the appointment, even if it meant walking for miles. As we came to a stoplight we saw our friend and neighbor, Sharon, in her car in front of us. Thinking she might also be going to Aguadilla, I jumped out of the car (people waited patiently), ran up to her, asked her where she was going and told her our problem. Turns out she was going a few more blocks to her dentist and offered to trade cars at the dentist. This we did, and after receiving a quick rundown on the idiosyncracies of her car (e.g., don't open the back door because it doesn't close again) we drove it to our destination, made the appointed time, got our permit approved, and came back to the dentist office where we traded back our cars, all the while smiling.

Then, in the afternoon, I went to our mechanic's house. He spent 35-40 minutes checking the car and figured out that we had a hole burned through one of the spark plug wires. Instead of saying he had to keep the car, etc., he found some special epoxy, glued up the hole and told me where I could use his name and get the new spark plug wires cheap! Drove there successfully, mentioned Terry's name and they smiled and gave me a BIG discount, took the new wires back to him and he replaced them. Total cost - wires and labor - $48. When he was done, he asked if I wanted the old spark plug wires. I said "no" and he said, "Good, I'll keep 'em around (and give them for free) for some poor surfer who can't afford to pay for new wires. They should hold somebody for a little while anyway."

And, two days ago I went to the post office to get money orders and mail our mortgage payment. While there, a man came in carrying a plastic bag and handed it across the counter to the employee working with me, who promptly gave him $20. I asked, "Que es eso?" ("What is that?"). Turns out it was 5 lbs. of very fresh Mahi Mahi (or Dorado as it's known around here). I got very excited (it's one of my favorite seafoods) and asked if he had more, then realized I didn't have an extra $20. "No problema" I was told - buy now, pay later, even with a person I had never met before, did not live there, and was simply going to trust that I would bring the $ to the post office when I could and he would pick it up sometime.

SO, that's how we ended up tonight eating fresh Mahi Mahi - grilled to perfection with light butter, lime juice, salt and pepper, celebrating that we now have our Permiso de Uso, and enjoying all the wonderful little big gifts our life brings us!

Limerick challenge

There was a little bar in Bajuras
Whose clientele was not really obscure-ous.
We asked them to write
A limerick quite right
For Yale students coming to tour us!

A group of visiting Yale law school students visiting and drinking at Ola Lola's threw down a limerick challenge. So to honor and extend the St. Patrick's Day celebration (any excuse to keep a good party going!) Friday night we will have the first-ever Ola Lola's Limerick Challenge.

Originally this was just going to be for on-site limerick-ticians. But some off-island folks asked if they could join in so we've opened it up to the whole Ola Lola family out there.

Limericks can be about anything (see below), not just Ola Lola's. Submit you limerick via e-mail to by 6 pm Friday. We will read submitted limericks before the gathered masses. Prizes WILL be awarded for the best two original limericks presented at Ola Lola's between 8-9 pm Friday (3/20/09) night.

TRY to keep your limericks appropriate for the family-friendly atmosphere at Ola Lola's.

Have fun with it!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Finally! a normal day

Well, sorta.

It's been weird weather for the last 10 days or so. That big storm that dumped snow on the East Coast a week ago has been churning away in the North Atlantic. It brought us driving winds day and night (shich is unusual), cloudy days, and cool temperatures. How cool? Cool enough to bring out jeans and hooded sweatshirts.

No, we don't expect any of you in the north just starting to come out of miserable winter to feel sorry for us.

But today is warm and sunny with a breeze but not the pounding winds. This is what March should be.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

I goofed!!!

In yesterday's post about the Chili Cook-off I said that Clare's chili was the vegetarian entry.

Boy did I get that wrong! Clare's was the Chicken Chili. Lorraine's People's Choice WINNING entry was the vegetarian chili.

Sorry, ladies - especially Lorraine.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

And the winner is...

Lorraine and Elaine celebrate Lorraine's People's Choice Award

Last Sunday we had the first (but not the last) Ola Lola's Chili Cook-off. It was a very close contest but the People's Choice winner was Lorraine Katt. Lorraine's sister, our good friend Eileen, owns a house down the little calle near the beach. Lorraine, Eileen, and their friends Kathy and Clare were all here for a long girls-weekend-out-of-the-cold on Long Island. They came prepared to make chili! They even carried a crock-pot all the way from New York.

Susan's Chili took second. Diver Darryl's toned-down chili was the unanimous choice for Spiciest. Other Darryl's was the most unusual and Clare's was the only vegetarian entry.

Thanks to everyone who participated, whether as a chili chef or chili taster. We had a lot of fun doing this. Watch for the Second Annual Ola Lola's Chili Cook-off next year. We'll plan it earlier to really help take the chill off a Puerto Rican winter evening.

All the participants- Back row: Diver Darryl, Lorraine, Elaine, Clare, Other Darryl.
Front row: John, Susan

Thursday, March 05, 2009

"Unidos por el mar" art auction is this weekend

Tomorrow evening is the "Unidos por el mar" ("United for the ocean") fundraiser for Rescate Playas Isabela at Bamboo Beach. Local restaurants will have food to sample. (We had dips there last year but with all that's going on, we just couldn't pull it off this year.) Artists are donting works that will be auctioned off to raise money.

Since Ola Lola's is also open tomorrow evening, we will get to the event a little late. But that's okay - the very successful event last year went well into the night.

We are donating three KAP (Kite Aerial Photography) photos to the auction.

The one above is looking west from Middles Beach toward Secret Spot and beyond.

Below is one of my personal favorites, our friend Eric kite surfing at Shacks Beach. Yes, that is the shadow of his kite on the ocean floor.

And finally, a fun one of beach umbrellas...on the beach!

So, if you're anywhere near our corner of the island tomorrow night, stop by Ola Lola's to get the night started and then buzz over to Bamboo Beach for a fun event for a great cause - keeping our beaches and our ocean clean!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Happy Birthday, Scoot!

Today is our youngest daughter's birthday.

Happy Birthday, baby girl! Hope it's joyous and wonderful! We love you and miss you!


Dad, Elaine, Amber, Jazz, Chocolate and Milo

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

"The best job in the world"

A KAP (Kite Aerial Photography) photo of the karst at Shacks Beach

All of you concerned about the future of Ola Lola's when we move to Great Barrier Reef for six months to be the "island caretaker" can stop worrying. We didn't make the short-list. So, we'll (very happily) keep the "best job in the world" we already have, taking care of Ola Lola's and our little corner of our little tropical island.

Monday, March 02, 2009



For the first time in three months, we have our house to ourselves.

Our nephew Jordan left to go back to the mainland on Friday. Amy and Kennedy went back to Michigan early yesterday morning.

It's not that we don't like people staying with us - please don't misunderstand. We LOVE having family and guests. But it's also nice to have a little quiet and private time to ourselves.


We have another beach-baby and rider in the family though. Kennedy's two favorite activities were running and playing on the beach and in the ocean and riding Chocolate with Abuela ("Grandma"). About the only time she fussed was when it was time to either leave the beach (I SO get it!) or get off the horse (Abuela SO gets it!).

Anyway, we have a brief respite, but we're looking to having family here again soon and seeing some wonderful friends in the near future ... por favor!