The Ponce Chronicles (Part 10)

Mineral hot springs!

In our one vacationlike excursion, we take the first full Sunday afternoon to drive to Coamo, where live the famous Coamo Thermal Springs. Apparently known to the Taino Indians and later to the Spanish settlers, the natural springs are indeed hot, emanating as they do from a dormant volcano under the land—and full of minerals, including, as becomes apparent, sulfur. There’s a nice little park there, where you pay a couple of bucks and get to soak in either of two pools, one hot, and the other hotter. It’s small, and in appearance a little like something you might see behind a “Magic Spot” rural motel. But indeed it’s relaxing, and the visitors are all pleasant and chatty. The girl who sells us the tickets tells us she grew up in Worcester, not far from Boston. Nearly everyone we talk to seems to have connections in the states, if not Boston itself. It’s a recurring theme.

Our favorite moment at the springs comes from the instructional sign posted above the hot, sulfurous, relaxing water:

No running
No diving
No alcohol
No discussing religion or politics…

Yah, these Puerto Ricans know a thing or two about relaxing!

(Coming next in Part 11, iguanas invade the pool!)

[To read The Ponce Chronicles in order, start here.]


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