Sunday Night at the Gas Station
By Anne Baker on Friday, November 16th, 2012
Cabarete is a town on the north coast of the Dominican Republic where tourists come for beaches, bars and shopping. Sure, we took some of that in while we were here, but the real highlight for us here was the gas station.
Seriously? Si! But not just any gas station. It had to be the Isla station near the turn off to the road to Moca.
On Sunday nights, people come from all over to dance. Behind the rows of cars and motorcycles and gasoline pumps, they put out rows of tables and chairs. The “official” place to dance appeared to be by the bar, which is where we all headed to crowd in with everyone else in relative darkness punctuated on occasion by strobe lights. But others danced anywhere and everywhere. One woman in particular right next to us had us – and everyone else around us – mesmerized by her gyrations.
We never did find the DJ. But we did experience the music, the laughter and the joy. It seemed to be the place to see and be seen, as friends and relatives connected and reconnected, floating from table to dance floor to table. People stayed most of the night, but when we passed by the next morning, it was back to being just the Isla station again.
That evening was one demonstration of what sets our group apart. We drove past the fancy stage and sound system set up on the beach, most likely crowded with tourists. We went where we were the only non-Dominicans. And we all danced.
The night at the gas station was not on the schedule for our Next Step Travel program here, but the vote from our travelers was unanimous – it is now! Learn how you can join future Next Step Travel programs in the Dominican Republic and Guatemala: travel.peacecorpsconnect.org.
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