After a two-week foray into Costa Rica, we returned to Nicaragua with a mission: to find a farm near Leon! Costa Rica may have offered certain gringo comforts--a/c transport, english speakers everywhere, a variety of "ethnic" foods--but hands down we preferred the Reality of Nicaragua. Leon was our population center of choice in Nicaragua, and we returned to swiftly begin our search. Plying the small paved road between Leon and Las Penitas several times a week, we started inquiring about land for sale just about every time we stopped to eat or struck up a conversation. It was an entirely new role for me to play in Central America: gringo looking for land! Was I really going to be one of those resident foreigners whose blogs I read on Nicargaua Living? While most people were eager to pass on any leads or information about properties in the area, the whole process was exhausting. After more than a month of looking at more than a dozen farms, our mission was accomplished, and we found The One: a lovely 18 acre farm full of fruit trees with a year-round forested creek in a mellow farming area 25 minutes from leon and 25
minutes from the Pacific ocean, 10 minute walk from a bus line with volcano views from the road. Perfect? Wasn't this what one of us, at least, had been dreaming about for so long?
We decided to take a weekend trip to the mountainous North to cool our heads and contemplate the decision before us. Now in our own wheels, we drove to the small town of Venecia, spending a night in Condega on the way and taking in a local fair. In Venecia, as Yacu slept in our way comfy hill-top cabin, Orit and I beheld a truly awesome all-night lightening storm showing rain somewhere in the distance as we lay in hammocks and mused over our plans for the farm: the edible tropical forest garden we would plant and design; the service-learning and community-oreiented business we would establish; the simple and all-natural housing we would build for ourselves fellow farm-loving journey-folks....The biggest questoins about whether or not Orit could adjust to life in Nicaragua, so different from Israel and so far from her family; we weighed what were in our minds the benefits and disadvantages for Yacu's socialization and education of living in this particular rural hamlet.
And what about our own grown-up social needs, for companionship beyond the confines of this dissolving nuclear family? Israel, Nicaragua, the U.S.--we circled round and round, but no one place seemed ideal or better than the others, ultimately, for settling down and raising a child, for supporting the kind of work and relationships of us was wanting. We were left asking ourselves: where did each of us want to be NOW and what did we want to be doing?
The short answer is: after already signing the papers, we decided against buying the land in Nicargaua. The jouney continues...
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