Friday, November 24, 2017


Tiny Pirate Blog Claudia Avila Batchelor RoadtripThe DR is a magical place to explore by road. This, I have recently found after my friend the Pirate invited me on a jolly to Las Terrenas, a sleepy seaside town which has the added bonus of a large French community. Croissants, crepes and delicious cellulite-inducing cheeses awaited me. Vive la France!!
So the Tiny Pirate and Pirate set off mid morning, and filling up in ‘la bomba’ my fist surprise of the day revealed itself to me. The petrol pumps look like ROBOTS!! I kid you not- they are actual little androids that dispense gasoline out of their skinny little arms. I ran around like a kid in a space party taking photos, whilst the Pirate looked nonchalantly at me. 


I think it was then that he had second and third thoughts about spending any amount of time trapped in a vehicle with such an immature child.


Tiny Pirate Blog Claudia Avila Batchelor RoadtripTiny Pirate Blog Claudia Avila Batchelor RoadtripTiny Pirate Blog Claudia Avila Batchelor Roadtrip

We’d been on the road for less than 30 minutes, with me providing what I perceived to be a witty running commentary, when the Pirate introduced me to a new game.

“Dead Fish”

“Ohh yes please!!” I squealed, clapping my hands in delight. “What do we do?”

“Well” A long pause followed his tightening grip on the steering wheel. This I knew, because his knuckles turned from pink to red to white.

Impatiently, I interrupted. “What do dead fish do? Don’t they just smell?” a visibly irked Pirate squeezed the wheel a little harder.

I wasn’t sure I wanted to play the game then, I really didn’t want to stink any more than a road trip in temperatures of 35 degrees would naturally provide. The Pirate continued to focus on the road. I think his knuckles went a greenish-purple at that moment. “Ohhh…nooo…I know! They kinda flap around like this” I said, flailing like out of water and opening and closing my mouth like one of those throw-a-ball-into-the-clown’s-mouth games at an arcade.

He remained silent. My brain was ever-so-sloooowly turning. The heat had sort of melted my synapses. Think!think!

I looked at his face. He was clenching his jaw slightly. Then it dawned on me.


“That’s right pumpkin!” The relief that my tiny pea brain had finally ‘got it’ was palpable on his smiling face.

I tried my best to shush and it was the longest minute of my life. Words just kept coming out, I kept putting my hands to my lips and following this up with a lot of “sorry!sorry!” and I think in the end I just became white noise, the Pirate managed to zone me out like you would an annoying buzzing fly hovering over you at night. Hmmm.

A Tiny Pirate Blog Lifestyle Cabarete Claudia Avila BatchelorEventually I even bored myself with my incessant chatter, so started taking photos along the stunning route. We really do live in a glorious paradise, delightfully lush and green and beautifully wild and underdeveloped. Reminds me so much of my childhood in Colombia. We stopped off at a Vivero that a friend had taken me to when I had first arrived in Cabarete, and aside from enjoying a lovely walk in the wonderfully tended gardens, we stuffed our faces with home made ice cream, apple pie, and impossibly indecent fresh yogurt and honey. Simple people, simple pleasures…

Post the food coma, the Pirate was more than happy to talk love, life and the universe with me, giving me the inside on boy speak, and it was quite a revelation that I had not expected from him. Maybe it was the combination of divine landscapes and mouthgasmic food that went to his head, or maybe it was just his turn to speak for a change! He disclosed his new found joys of age-appropriate dating, as “young girls are great fun to play with but I don’t want to end up a middle aged bar fly hitting on someone who could be mistaken for my daughter”.

“Ah! You mean you finally find us ladies-of-a-certain-age attractive?”

“Yes- you’re more fun, less needy, better friends and more confident which is sexy. Not you personally, but women of your age.”

I stabbed him with my stiletto heel, making the car crash into a ditch. Well, only in my mind. (Not really lovely Pirate, you know I would only ever stab you in your sleep heehee!) The reality was that in that one conversation, with someone whom I love dearly but never, ever thought would change, I saw hope for boys-of-a-certain-age who may not quite remain ageing sugardaddies forever.

And in these times where success is measured by money, status, youth, beauty, and material assets, it’s great to know that there are those who still value what is inside a person’s heart and mind over superficial attributes because those are the real priceless things we are all capable of possessing. Those are the things that don’t wither or fluctuate so wildly, the very essence of what forms the cornerstone of long lasting and meaningful relationships.

A Tiny Pirate Blog Lifestyle Cabarete Claudia Avila BatchelorA Tiny Pirate Blog Lifestyle Cabarete Claudia Avila Batchelor

We ambled along picturesque mountains, tiny villages with smiley children, past dramatic coast lines and picture-perfect beaches, arriving at the cute and pretty Las Terrenas just in time for a sundowner. It’s a strange sensation to feel like you are on holiday when you are already in paradise but I guess any new place will make you feel like that. We spent the first night exploring the charming and buzzy town, the pastel colours really making it feel like a Caribbean gem. We watched fantastic dancers twirl an older crowd into a frenzy, ate crepes that had been stuffed-to-burst, met with super lovely people and I had a tiny boogey in the local nightclub whilst the Pirate watched from the sidelines. (Pirates don’t dance; I am the only exception to the rule).

A Tiny Pirate Blog Lifestyle Cabarete Claudia Avila Batchelor

All in all this was such a great experience, and an eye opener in more ways than one. Coming back on the sardine-tin-on-wheels that is the guagua, I reflected on my couple of days adventure and noted that even though I had someone sitting on my lap, another on my shoulders and probably someone on my head that I could not feel as my circulation had been cut off, just the simple act of going on a trip to a neighbouring town had provided me with more knowledge and appreciation of this beautiful island and my beautiful friend than if I’d just sat at home.

So get out there! Viva la exploracion!!

Toodle Pip until next time ☺


All photos and text by Claudia Avila-Batchelor


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