Rural Rincón, PR, USA
Illuminated Summertime Hues
Mangoes litter the gutters and sidewalks of every one-lane street this time of year. They bring a most brightly illuminated marigold hue to life when their skin’s pigment is highlighted by hot sunshine, while further contrast develops from a paved background acting as a black canvas with fresh acrylic paint strewn across its surface. The marigold skin of each mango indicates their readiness, their sweetness, and the shift of seasons from spring to summer. I’ve called these mango-littered roads of Rincón, nestled in this rural coastal Caribbean town, home for nearly two years now. There’s a particular charm to be discovered during this time of year when the scattered mangoes are found amongst a desolate and eerie tranquility that serves as reminder of the town’s busy surf-filled winter tourism season just passed. However, the desolateness begets a wandering mystique ready to be explored, uncovered, and revealed.
Like many who winter here, I came for the surf and stayed for the, well, ruralness of Rincón, Puerto Rico, USA.
Another central feature of the rural summertime magnificence can found in witnessing coveted red-orange blooms of the Flamboyán trees become vibrantly set apart from the rolling green hillsides. The hills of Rincón appear to be spotted with blushing embers, which leave faint traces of floral scents drifting through the slow-moving summertime air. It’s only during this time of year the Flamboyán trees ignite their petals in unison, and a visitor may not recognize the rarity or specialness of bearing witness to their passionate displays of color. Their passionate displays of color may permeate long into your thoughts, and will likely add vibrancy to the memories awaiting to be formed from your exploration of a most spectacular coastal town.
Surreal Scenes and Salty Whispers
The scenes I’ve described above aren’t available to those who must retreat back to their summer destinations after winter, nor are they available to those who tour Rincón only for a brief holiday. Neither available are the scenes of many isolated, reef-lined, and sinuously curved outlines of golden sandy beaches as they meet warm turquoise shallows, where the seawater undulates back and forth to shift the water’s line and the observer’s attention. And attention is what these scenes command – attention and appreciation of the surreal quality inherent to the vaporous effects created by temperature change and the fusing of elements participating in this undulation. As appreciations are paid by those privy to pay them, subtle and enigmatic whispers begin to stir about and come from the sea air’s mist. Whispers that not only envelope the listener’s ear, but that also envelope the ear’s contours that lead the whispers’ messages through a passageway where they arrive at a place met with imagination. The surrealness of this scene activates an inspired potential for where the observer’s awe and imagination may levitate and be carried away from here. And be carried away imagination does.
Living out Fantasy on an Island Reality
During this time of year, it’s not uncommon to live out long-awaited fantasies of being stranded on a deserted island where you’re left to live off coconut flesh and a dream of finding buried treasures left by the Spaniards or pirates. This may give sufficient clue for where in Rincón you may find yourself at a favorite beach-line of mine – a beach where historic relics from days of Spanish conquest carve themselves into the coastal outline at length. If you’re daring and can find your way along dashed lines of a self-drawn treasure map, then secluded moments and soulless prospects you’ll find. Other treasures to be uncovered may come in the form of having countless opportunities to collect sea glass along your mid-day stroll, or of finding a smoothly polished shell that will attach a physical artifact to the imaginative reality you’re creating. Be careful, however, that you don’t put an occupied shell in your pocket that may contain one of the hundreds of tiny hermit crabs who call those lands home.
Coconut-palms will surely fill your eye-line throughout your stay no matter where you go in Rincón. While coconut flesh and that dream of buried treasure may satiate one’s imaginative cravings for some time, there are also boundless versions of lofty fantasies to be played out while immersed in Rincón’s many scenes. This is where your own imagination receives license to move into a space of liberation, and you’ll be encouraged to engage with desire and live out possibilities of what could happen if you spend time drifting away and melting into such a Caribbean ruralness. Instances of melting conjure a few images at the forefront of my mind’s eye – of sinking into a shaded beach chair with a favored book collecting wet fingerprints as the pages are turned, of lounging by a pool set close enough to hear the melodic ebb and flow of gently pulsing waves, and of cracking open a beer bottle as it accumulates a dewy facade from having just been pulled out of an iced cooler. If you’re lucky enough to be accompanied by a companion, or have the good fortune of making one along your stay here, then these imaginative moments may doubly incite melting at different points.
Connect with Mystery and Exoticism
Succumbing to the effects of relaxation, solitude, and the unique sensorial reality created by these lustrous scenes is a mere tease for what’s to come by way of experiencing the daylight sun transform into a hazy glow of innumerable afternoon rays found only just before dusk. The beauty apparent in this imagery shows itself at an undisputedly well-known landmark in Rincón, and one that permits an observer’s glance from the roadside – if that’s the location one happens upon close to sunset. Wintertime observers frequent this vista to watch world-class waves and courageous riders surf on deep-blue faces tha t thrust upwards of 20-30 feet in height. Summertime observers linger at this viewing place awaiting their chance to peer through a shifting prism as it displays its full spectrum of colors upon the vibrantly moistened grass fields while they extend their touch toward the horizon line. It’s with no exaggeration that I proclaim summer sunsets to be amongst the most spectacular experience of a Rincón stay during this time of year: days are steamy, long-lasting, and laden with salty opportunities to be sucked into the mystery and exoticism displayed in a sunset like this one.