March 27, 2010 – March 28, 2010
So, Yesterday I got in and it was so nice to see the beach again after the arid mountains and the heat that I'm am slowly getting acclimated to again. Damn, I live in Texas this shouldn't be that bad?!? Ok power just went out as I am writing this but thank you for batteries. I like San Juan Del Sur, very chill and have a place on the main street across from the beach. It is a basically a cove with mountains, cliffs and volcanoes surrounding it but a major destination for Nicaraguans. Have I mentioned that this is Easter week and one of the biggest holidays of the year if n0t the biggest. Lots of locals and nationals but still very layed back. Also this is a huge surfing destination and considered one of the best in Latin America. Ok first let me say I drove to San Jorge very early this morning to catch the ferry over to Isla Del Ometepe. It is a large island consisting of two volcanoes in the middle of a huge lake in Nicaragua. The Ferry I was supposed to get on, well I did get on it, is a large barge with an outboard motor that started out, went about 100 meters and then the motor cut out. Have no illusions of grandeur that it has any safety might as well life jackets but fortunately I brought my own straps to tie down my bike because we drifted for a while with a strong wind until with a little mechanical help from everyone involved including myself we got it started. It is amazing what a number 11 wrench can do and duct tape. We made it back to the shore and mind you there was no dock, and managed to get back and with a tow made it through the sand along the beach. Again, the unfortunate part is my camera, both cameras are fouling, the one that had water damage and the one I just bought. Bastards. There are times I really wish I had pictures but they are so hard to take when you are in the moment. Regardless made it back to the road and they gave me a voucher for the next time. Granted it is only worth roughly $5 bucks but you bet your bottom dollar I am making it across and using that voucher. I will have to wait a day but enjoying it on the beach and learning the town. Ok, so no island today, but had some time to kill and decided to take some Spanish Lessons. Ok Singular, lesson. There is a couple of places here but no one was in and waited. A lady named Flores shows up and says she one of the teachers (power just went on). Awesome, negotiate 4 hours of class for the day and start the training...... Again, let me say you have to ask the right questions here. Did I ask if she could speak English, no, that she had a certification to teach Spanish, no, that she had taught for awhile, no. Now this is an accredited program and has brochures but she did not know the English definition for half the words. Ok this is awesome and actually just what I wanted. She started trying to go into verb tenses and then I stopped her mid way. I explain to her in my Spanglish that I need conversational Spanish and more importantly slang, directions, local customs and conversational skills. Now she is helpful but it turns into me looking up alot of words in the Spanish dictionary and her telling me how to pick up chicas. Let me say it was beyond comical....half the lesson after I tell her multiple times that is not what I am trying to learn just laughs and continues on phrases that have no bearing on general travel. Appreciate the fact she is at least 50 years old, 200 lbs, married, multiple kids and has lived in San Juan her whole life. I love when I get to learn local culture. Needless to say after 4 hours, $20, alot of laughter and a little bit of a sun I feel like I am well enlightened and oh so fluent. I don't think they have the same Spanish classes in the States but they should at least for the comedy relief. The rest of the day chill on the beach, drive up north a few Kms to other beaches, drive up the mountain to see the vistas and sunset, have dinner a few drinks and then try, as I am now, to decide what I want to do today. I am going to try the ferry again Wednesday, but maybe surf, spearfish or look at the property we own down here. I know I must have driven by it today when on the northern slope but haven't heard back from our Real Estate agent yet. So as it goes, life is a journey....not a destination. So far, thumbs up!