In this week’s ‘Memories of Casa de Campo,’ Carol Burke takes us on a sight-seeing tour around La Romana – before it became the La Romana it is today and it is surprisingly different!

During the almost 12 years I lived in Casa de Campo, there were visits from relatives who were always interested in sightseeing in La Romana.

When my brother-in-law visited from Ohio, I was the one elected to take him on a guided tour of La Romana.

We spent quite a while wandering around La Romana. There are so many things happening in this town.

The first stop on the sightseeing tour is the La Romana City Hall.

About a block away from the city hall, on the other side of the La Romana Park, is the Long Distance phone company where people go to make telephone calls. People sit in little booths and ask the operator to call a number for them. It’s sort of like a restaurant but you order a phone call to your table instead of food.

After the downtown tour we drive towards the La Romana market, and on the way we stop at a bodega near the lotto ticket seller. This is a lively corner. 

The truck traffic in the street leading to the market takes up both lanes. It’s amazing how many fruits and vegetables this truck is carrying, and nothing falls off.

We consider buying a drink at the soda pop stand, but instead we’ll try to translate the poem on the push-cart. It says, “Que Dios te multiplique / Los que tu me desea / yu yu ne la la mariposa / felix la chula.

The lumber supply store in La Romana is very busy. Carts and horses are lined up outside to haul lumber for new construction. Down the street, the Hot Point Cafe on the corner also seems to be a busy place.

The La Romana market is interesting – full of fruit and vegetable vendors and small eating shops. Some of the shoppers leaving the market look very friendly and welcoming to tourists, others not so much.

On the way out of town we drive by the Rio Dulce. There is a colorful abandoned edifice there and a tiny restaurant built on the side of the riverbank.

Thank you to Carol Burke for another fascinating and entertaining article!