Published: August 11th 2008September 22nd 2006
Pit stop on the way to the beach
A picture of Marta and her aunt while we were picking up supplies. I think the sheer heat of the day is radiating through on this one. Bare concrete parking lot, hot sun. Staring at it too long will dry out your eyeballs! LOOK AWAY!!!
Day Four - Friday September 22nd
We woke up early because it was going to be a packed day. Marta had met a girl online from El Salvador who likes Yaoi. YES an EL SAL yaoi fan! Apparently there are many of them, but they're either spread out too far around the country, their parents are too overbearing and won't let them leave the house, or they are too young and their parents won't let them leave the house.
This one girl, Jen, lives in San Salvador and met up with us after her English classes in the morning. We could only hang for an hour or so, so we hung at (where?) Metro Centro where we had breakfast. Her English is *really* good and it was nice to understand a conversation as it happens rather than wait for a translation from my wonderful translator Mchan. I ate some eggs and buns and stuff. The eggs were fried and had been sitting under a heat lamp for a while so they were a little glazed and hard (but I ate them anyways). Ugh, those eggs... TIME TO GO TO THE BEACH!!
Yes, after meeting with Jen we had to rush
We quickly ducked inside the store/supermarket and found some liquid refreshment. We knew that booze alone would NOT be a good idea on a hot day, so we got some bottles of water too.
back to our room because Marta's aunt (who had picked us up from the airport) was taking us to a beach house that her best friend owns. I slathered sunblock all over my body *except* for my back (remember this b/c it's very vital to how Saturday turned out). SPF 45 all over my pasty-ass body. Yes, no sun would be killing *MY* skin! I packed a bag with assorted items as well as the bottle of SPF 45 sunblock. "Marta, when we get to the beach can you please put some sunblock on my back?" "Sure thing!" We were picked up and drove out to the beach.
It. Was. Hot. I say this often, but the closer we got to the coast, the more humid and unbearable it became. The vehicle we were in was airconditioned, but when we stepped out to buy some supplies (Smirnoff Coolers) and popsicles! (We could only afford one after the booze XD )
When we arrived at the beach house I was blown away. It was located on the beach front, and was pretty much a house with no walls (a roof with supports) and a kitchen and bathroom. The supports
Road to the beachhouse
It was such a loooong road to get to the beachhouse (the entire right side was packed with beach houses right beside each other. Apparently there is a huge party that happens on this street once a year and it's packed with people.
had massive hooks on them that I later learned were for stringing up hammocks! The place had a pool too (just in case the ocean wasn't good enough for us!). There was another section that was an actual house, but it was where the help stayed. (There was a family that lived on the property to upkeep it. I'd say they have a pretty good deal! Clean a beach house, live on a beachfront property, and enjoy life!)
Marta's cousin Gaby showed up shortly after that with Minerva. They brought a couple more people with them, this guy named Omar and a girl and guy who weren't that sociable. It seemed that she was mega jealous of him and anybody he talked to and he was the same with her. (I don't see *why* considering they were the least attractive people I'd seen while I was there. Oh well, perhaps they had sparkling personalities, but then why are they jealous if they're awesome people??) We didn't talk much with them since they sat at a table together and M and I were at another table. (I felt like they were the cool kids and I was being rejected again.
Gates to the beachhouse
Very nice drive, and nice gates. There was a family that lived at the beachhouse as security, they let us in.
Kinda blew, but I liked talking to M and her aunt better anyways XD). After a while we decided to head out to the beach and catch some waves and rays.
The sand was black (not pitch black, but black enough to heat up fast) because of the volcanoes around. It was killer on the feet. I try to toughen up my feet by walking on the ashplatt in the summer here, but my feet were not prepared for the hike out on the sand. Luckily enough I had my flip-flops (that I'd bought in San Francisco!) and they carried me over the burning grains of blackish beach. We set our towels down and dove into the massive waves.
Eventually we climbed out of the surf and made to lie down on our towels in the sun. We'd forgotten our bag back in the beach house with that lovely (vital!) bottle of SPF 45 sunblock in it. We were too comfortable to move and I decided that I might get a bit of a burn on my back, but it wouldn't be that bad. (SNORFLE!!!!)
Instead of slathering sunblock on my back, I decided that covering my
Such a nice pool.
legs in sand would be more productive. The sand didn't brush off easily (even if you were dry) and we had to shower afterwards. Marta's aunt brought us our Smirnoff coolers and we drank them, thus prolonging our stay on the beach even longer. For the record I only laid on my stomach for about 15 minutes. The rest of the time was spent on my back or sitting up with my back in shadows.
Eventually we went back and Gaby and the cool kids wanted to walk down the beach to a little hut that sold food. We went with them and had fun hanging out for a while. We had fun taking pictures and making fun of some people who seemed to be having *too* good a time if you catch my drift. This is not the type of beach you want to be getting amorous on. Remember how I mentioned that the sand is a bitch to get off? Well, yeah, you don't want it getting jammed in places!
After the beach Gaby and Minerva left in the car they'd come in and M's aunt & uncle drove us to a little town
The ocean is THAT WAY
Looking out from under the roof-house-thing we can see the beach over yonder.
in the mountains that has many, many pupusa shacks. There was a very nice one that was set in a building and had many tables for people to sit and eat. The sun had zapped my appetite, but they bought us each 2 pupusas and we had to eat them. It was a nice place, with long picnic tables with cloth coverings, a tv in the corner with some soap opera playing, people milling about, dogs sleeping under the tables, and a woman by the window slapping together some pupusa dough to throw onto a burning grill. The coke still came in bottles and I picked up the first pupusa; made from corn. It was very good, although I got full after eating it, and I still had a rice pupusa to go. I forced the majority of that down before enlisting M's help in finishing it. I don't think it's a good thing to force cheese into your stomach when you're not hungry. I was a little over-stuffed after that. We drove back. It was already very dark by this point (maybe 7:30 at night?). I figured that we might stay in and go to sleep (the sun had
I went out to the beach and looked back at the beach house to get a good shot of the patio and ALL the HAMMOCKS that were there!
REALLY zapped my energy). Usually on Friday nights I spend the time inside. In El Salvador, where *everyone* is a social butterfly/party animal NOBODY stays in on Friday nights. Gaby & co. were going to take us to a bar. M offered for me to stay home, but I learned years ago while going to trade shows that you have to enjoy the opportunity and go out as often as possible (even for a hermit like me), so I went out.
At first it was very loud. Too loud. I knew I was getting older because I was more concerned about my possible hearing loss than finishing the new Smirnoff cooler that had been put in my hand. We were sitting on tall stools around a small table and I wasn't overly amused. I prefer to sit in sturdy chairs than try to perch on a stool. What's the point in putting chairs that require balance in a place where you imbibe beverage that takes away your balance?? We moved shortly after that to a *very* crowded bar that would have been breaking many fire laws had it been in Canada. We found a table in the corner and
Pic of me
Marta shot a pic of me taking pics.
while there were still stools, I was able to get close to the wall so it didn't matter. I'd had two coolers by this point. The people with us were Gaby, Minerva, Omar, this guy who's name I forget (but he was just as much of a playa as Omar was, so I'll call him Playa 2) and a girl named (I shit you not) Marta. Yes, in our time in El Salvador we met about 3 other Martas. No Carolines, but El Sal seems to be bursting at the seems with girls named Marta. Playa 2 was *such* a playa and he kept trying to get me to dance. I kept blowing him off and drinking his bottle of Tequila with Marta. He seemed to think we were cool girls because we were actually *drinking* as opposed to Gaby and Minerva who were just dancing. Yes, I didn't drink enough to get sick. Not at all. I've had worse in Canada and not gotten sick. Heck, I could still walk on my own and carry on coherent conversations. I could think clearly although my vision felt fuzzy (although it usually does. Let's say my vision was MORE blurry than
We were so overjoyed we had to capture the moment forever! Marta looks so pretty and I look like a, um, how do you say "dork" in Spanish?
With all the smoke and drink I decided that it would be fun to go and get some fresh air. Long story short, the water we ordered didn't help and I was finding interesting places to toss my cookies. I was still coherent enough to observe that there was a plant in the corner should I need a place to rush to. I believe that the SUN™ coupled with my being stuffed full of PUPUSAS™ and lots of TEQUILA™ resulted in my sudden illness. Individually those things would have not caused any problems, but together? Let's say that I was happily walking along, a little tipsy, when I suddenly slipped down the proverbial slope of SICK!DRUNK that was slick with all the rain that El Sal had been having. It carried me down to the first outcropping of solid ground of NOT!PUKING where I clung for dear life. I would *NOT* make a fool of myself in front of the other people.
We eventually left the bar and went to a gas station to get something to eat. Then they dropped us off at home. I was feeling much better and it was I who took care
Picture-taking difficulty rating +3
I hadn't been swimming in salt-water ocean in a little over 8 years, so I was very happy to get back into it. The waves were HUGE and knocked me off my feet a couple times. I got some lovely "rug burns" on my knees from where I skidded across the sandy bottom.
of Marta a bit while she climbed into bed. I folded our clothes, cleaned up and made everything nice. Even had the wherewithall to spray my legs and arms with bug spray and to remind M to do the same.
Sometime after crawling into bed, while I was blissfully sleeping, something snapped inside me and I started sinking into what can only be known as hell.
There are more photos below