Category Archives: Cars

Never Let Your Marbete Expire!


Posted by Cassie

Well, we knew better and yet it still happened to us. And this lesson was an expensive one.

Marbete ticket
Marbete tickets!

We totally forgot about renewing the marbete (the registration and compulsory insurance) this year. Nothing came in the mail and we drove about completely oblivious to the expired sticker on the windshield of the Mustang. Britton went out to run some errands and stop by the beach for a bit. When he was on his way back, he got pulled over by a motorcycle cop. He had no idea what he had done. Well, it wasn’t what he had done, but what he hadn’t done: renewed the marbete. And what a fine. $500 for lack of marbete and $200 for lack of inspection (that you get when you get your marbete). $700 for something he didn’t even know he was lacking! Yikes. He tried to explain in his broken Spanish to the officer, but it didn’t matter. He was getting the tickets.

Farmers Market
Selling our flowers at the farmer’s market in Rincon on Sundays

He was understandably upset, especially because we have been working to save up a bit more money working at the film sets, selling flowers and renting out the cabana. Pretty much all of that savings went *poof* with these tickets. I told him it was ok. We made a mistake. Things happen, but we should just go and get it taken care of. No sense in waiting. Plus we would need the marbete in order to keep driving the car. Luckily the police let him drive home. We’ve heard that they sometimes won’t even let you go. They will impound your car and make you find an alternative way home. Oh, joy! So…it could always be worse I suppose!

Adam Brody and Cassie
Working as an extra for the show “Start-up” with actor Adam Brody

So we took the truck (at least that marbete was up to date) to Aguadilla (since the Anasco offices are closed due to Maria) along with the “inspection” of the Mustang (they don’t actually inspect anything, they just print a paper for $16 saying you passed emissions testing). We paid the $180 for the new marbete and found that we would get 30% off the tickets if we paid them within 15 days of receipt; so we did. Once that pocket ache was finished, we decided it was time for treat. Off to the ice cream shop again.

Banana Split
Since I was a kid, ice cream has always cheered me up. A nice banana split

If you can learn from us, do! Never let your marbete expire. It is not worth it. The police rarely enforce any laws here. But that is one that they are super strict about. Don’t risk it, check monthly!

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Dancing with John Travolta


Posted by Cassie

Conquistador
El Conquistador Resort, Fajardo PR

We had another opportunity to be extras in the John Travolta movie that is currently filming in Puerto Rico. This time it was held at El Conquistador Resort in Fajardo and I was almost as excited to see this famed locale as I was to do the movie!

Conquistador tram
Tram up the steep slope of El Conquistador

We took the Mustang again, and again had car troubles, this time with a form of overheating. Thankfully we made it. Though it made the day a little more stressful not knowing if we would be able to get home or not!

Travolta trophy scene cassie
If you look closely, you will see me in the background of this shot in the movie

The first scene I was in was a trophy award ceremony for the main protagonist (John Travolta’s character). I loved my 70′s style pants in this one. Dressing up is so much fun!

Hippie chick awesome pants Slick BK
Full outfits from the front

Unlike the other day of filming, most of the day was spent in a huge ballroom of the hotel which meant it was a lot more comfortable and air conditioned! We ran into a few friends and met many more!

Terrie and us
With friends Terrie and Mark

Extras
With the group of extras in the trophy scene

After that initial scene they moved me in to get changed for the elegant dinner lounge scene. For this one, we were to be fancily dressed. I bought my own dress because that was part of the instructions, but they ended up saying that since I am the right size for wardrobe I could use one of the vintage dresses on the rack. I haven’t particularly liked any of my outfits in the other movies/scenes, but I just loved this coral-colored one!

Pretty background cassie Cassie dress conquistador 2
My dress for the dance scene

All the extras need costumes as well as hair styling and the lines can get pretty long!

Line of hairdo
The line for just two hair stylists!

Rafa Priscilla Cassie Britton
¡Qué elegancia! With friends Rafa and Priscilla

The dinner scene was pretty cool because I actually sat at the same table as John Travolta! You will definitely see me if you look for me! Here is a covert shot as they set up to shoot the scene.

Dinner scene
From Britton’s table across the room in the dinner scene

Band of movie
They had an awesome local Puerto Rican band for the scene. What a boon to their career!

There was one final scene that the assistant director called for: anyone want to dance? They had already had a couple’s dance scene, but this one would be a little funkier and dance to the song Fire. Me, me, me!! I jumped out of my seat and danced my booty off on the dance floor with John Travolta. It was an awesome moment in my life as I don’t think many people can say they’ve danced with John Travolta in one of his movies! Overall, it was a very memorable day and I can’t wait to see the movie!

Cinematographer Director crop
With acclaimed cinematographer Andrzej Sekuła and director John Luessenhop

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Bote Millan and More Exploration


Posted by Cassie

It had been something of a rough week emotionally, so Britton and I thought some Vitamin Sea might be just what the doctor ordered. Which beach should we explore? There are so many beaches in Rincón, but we often go to the same ones all the time which normally are the north beaches near our house. So instead, we chose to go down south near Corcega and Almendros Beach.

BK Float

Britton walking out of water
Britton enjoying the warm Caribbean waters

I have seen the Millan Boat from afar before, but I have never gone and explored it. From what I understand it was built in the mid 20th century by Mr. Emiliano “Millan” Altiery as an homage to the fishermen profession.

Bote Millan
Bote Millan from a distance

Cassie walking
Wow! Up close it looks a lot like a boat!

Cassie bote flag
Another cool place to take photos

Britton mystery Cassie under bote
And look snazzy whilst drinking our morning coffee

Cassie Bote Millan
Up on top it really did feel like a boat!

Cassie bote
Ahoy, mateys!

Right nearby I noticed a cool swing! Being the adventurer that I am, I had to take a ride! Swinging on a coconut palm while the waves crashed next to a small river outlet reminds me how much my life seems like a dream and this is the carnival scene.

Cassie swing 2
Swinging to the sea!

Cassie swing river
Over the river

After swimming a bit more we began to get hungry. We packed up our beach chairs and headed down the road in the Millennium Falcon, our nickname for the warp-speeding Mustang. We picked up a pollo asa’o sandwich, chatted with a friend and then blasted off to find a little deserted beach in Añasco.

Car context
The Mill Falcon on a new planet

Cassie walk in jungle
Exploring paths unknown

Cassie jungleDeep in the jungle

All in all, I’d say it helped us perk up a bit to remember what a beautiful place and time we get to live.

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Buying (Another) Car in Puerto Rico!


Posted by Cassie

britton-mustang
Britton has a sports car again!

We have been considering buying another car for some time now. Having just the truck works fine especially because we don’t really need to drive very often and when we do it is pretty much just local to Rincón. However, we have had a couple of occasions when the truck has broken down and we have no other recourse except to walk everywhere or bum rides. Also, Britton has been missing his Corvette and the V8 under the hood ever since we sold it in the move from Colorado.

corvette
On one of our first dates in Colorado with the Corvette

He found a cool old Mustang on one of the Pulguero groups on Facebook and we made arrangements to meet with the owner.

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Checking under the hood and we found everything was (surprisingly) stock!

After inspecting it, taking it for a test drive and agreeing on a price we then made arrangements to meet the next day in Mayaguez at Obras Públicas to buy it and put the title in our name. In Colorado all you had to do was sign the title over to the new buyer and then take the title in to get registered. Here, it is much more friendly and you must go with the owner in person to change it over. In this case, the brother was the official owner so the four of us made the early morning trek.

Unlike when we bought our truck, this time we have established residency with our driver’s licenses and so we didn’t need a utility bill in order to buy it (though we brought it just in case). However, the marbete (registration sticker) was expired so we did need to go take care of that right away. Because though the police will often ignore drunk driving, if that little sticker is expired you are nearly guaranteed to get a ticket!

mustang-and-guys
Britton with the ex-owners

Now that we know our way around the system a little better it was actually pretty easy to buy this car. Here are the steps we took to buy this used car from a private seller.

1) Meet with the owner to inspect, test drive, negotiate price, etc.
2) Make arrangements to meet at Obras Públicas (CESCO/DTOP) together with the owner
3) Buy $10 worth of government stamps (sellos) to make the transaction
4) Wait in line to sign over the title. Both parties need identification and address information.
5) Pay for the car (usually cash)
6) Get emissions inspection (that is not really an inspection- they don’t even look at the car in most cases) for $11.
7) Sometimes you can get marbete at the time of the emissions inspection. In our case for some reason we had to go to another Colecturia office. We went to Añasco. Basic Marbete (registration/liability insurance) is $169.

inspeccion-edit
The laughable emissions test even gives out readings though it never took any! But hey, can’t complain too much if you pass!

The car is a bit of a fixer-upper and needs a little bit of work. For instance the seat belts don’t clasp, the doors don’t really lock and it badly needed an oil change. But overall, it seems to be a good solid car with a heck of a motor. It’s fun to take it out and about on the island. And with more seats, it will be a good vehicle for excursions with friends.

cassie-car
Mustang Cassie

bk-ck-car
Fun with the Mustang

cassie-mustang-car-standing
Do you ever feel like you’re part of a movie?

cassie-mustange-desecheo
Driving off into the sunset

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