We made it to the first destination of our vacation, Santa Fe – New Mexico, yesterday after a very long and stressful trip. The long part was s expected, but the stressful part was a surprise to us.
Our flight out of Virgin Gorda to San Juan was scheduled to leave at 10:30 am, but it did not leave until almost 12. I was in a little bit of a panic because our flight out of San Juan was at 2pm. To make matters worse, we found out that we would have to stop by St. Thomas because we needed to drop off a passenger. This meant that we also had to go through the immigrations and customs in St. Thomas. After waiting 10 minutes for an immigration officer to stamp our passports, we left St. Thomas for San Juan at 12:45pm.
I spent the half an hour trip between St. Thomas and San Juan calculating our steps and the time we had left trying to figure out a way to make it to our flight on time. I was glad that we had gone through the customs and immigration in St. Thomas, thinking that we wouldn’t have to spend another 10-15 minutes in San Juan doing the same thing once again. Come to find out, the two territories do not recognize each other and passengers coming from St. Thomas would have to go through immigration and customs again.
We barely made it to our flight on that day. And at some point, my husband and I were literally sprinting in the hallways of San Juan’s Luis Munoz International Airport.
To say the least, it was an exercise in frustration for both of us.
Later we learned that, due to the slow season on the islands, Air Sunshine (the local airline company out of Virgin Gorda) decided to merge flights to save on cost without the courtesy of letting us know about the time change and/or asking us about the time of our connecting flight.
Anyhow… I guess such experiences are a part of living on an island in the Caribbean. And as you can see, it doesn’t always feel like peaches and cream.
Right before I left the island, my friend Chrissann and I created this delicious drink together. I was the one who came up with the idea of using celery in a drink as I was trying to consume whatever left in our fridge before we went onto our trip. Also, a while back, I read in a magazine that perfume producers use celery when creating scents, especially for men’s colognes. I thought that the mild flavor and smell of celery could only enhance the flavors in any dish that it is added into.
Still at first, we were not sure how it is going to turn out in a drink, but after the first sip we were happily surprised how refreshing and delicious it ended up being. I think the best part of this drink is that you can easily find the ingredients in any season, which in my book makes it perfect for any occasion regardless of the time of the year.
Celery Citrus Spritzer
- 4 stalks of celery plus more for garnishing – chopped
- 2 ounces of lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 1 lemon sliced as garnish
- 2 tablespoons of agave nectar
- 4 ounces dry gin (I used Hendrix)
- fresh mint leaves
- club soda
- In a shaker, muddle the celery, lemon juice, and agave nectar to a pulp.
- Add the gin and ice. Shake hard for 20-25 seconds and strain into a glass filled with fresh ice.
- Garnish it with fresh mint leaves, lemon slices, and chopped celery. Top it off with club soda.