Saturday was our last full day in Aruba. We had decided to rent a car for the day and see what this little country had to offer.
|Breakfast at a regular deli. It was recommended by the guide|
book, and even though the food wasn't Aruban (it was French)
it was a very good choice. I love bagels!!
|About 4 or 5 miles from our hotel (which is at the end of the|
tourist road) is the downtown area.
We walked in the "downtown" area for a bit but quickly found that it wasn't for us. A lot of little tchotchky shops and a lot of very high-end shops. I found out later that Aruba has good prices on jewelry (for US tourists) and clothing (for South American tourists…in the US we can find any high-end clothing brand for less money, apparently). We didn't find any interesting museums or exhibits, and it seemed everything was set up for the cruise ship travelers (which makes sense, since during the daytime there can be ~thousands~ of tourists from the ships!).
|One of the highlights was this pretty building.|
|I liked this little channel as well.|
The guide book did have some options for lunch, but we were still full from breakfast so we just planned on an early dinner. We decided to leave town and spend the rest of the afternoon at the resort.
|On the main road in the tourist area.|
|We stopped by a grocery store on the way back.|
|A painting of the restaurant.|
We had just enough time to make a visit to the Alto Vista chapel. This was the first church on the island and it's located in the northwest corner.
|Stations of the Cross on the way up.|
|This windblown tree is a "divi divi" tree. No matter where|
you are on the little island, you can always get back to the
nice beaches if you follow the tree. (This one had a huge
cactus growing in the same place as well).
We made it down the hill and to Mass just in time. St. Ann's was a beautiful church; I really enjoyed all the wood carvings at the altar:
To our great surprise and pleasure, we found out that Mass was being said in the native Papiamento language! This was such a special experience, just to think about how it was the very same Mass that I knew, but yet it was so different. What I thought was a simple Sunday obligation became a memory I will always treasure. Funny how that works!