Friday: In Managua

Published: August 12th 2011
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We are back once again in Managua. It is still very warm but much less humid than in El Sauce. But of course, that is all relative. It is still way more humid than in Ottawa. We left our wonderful hotel in Leon and headed to Managua at about 9am. Along the way, our bus driver pointed out a small town, La Paz Centro. that made all the clay tiles that are used for building. Apparently, they are all made by hand including the half cylinder shapes that are used as roofing tiles. There were huge piles of wood to burn in the furnaces where they fired the tiles. In the distance we could see a volcano that had smoke and ash coming out the top. This is the Telica volcano. We thought it was quite exciting but the local people didn't even notice.

Managua is a bustling city with lots of street vendors. Lots of people try to sell their wares to people in their cars as they are waiting at stop signs. They walk down the middle of the road with enormous bags of cashews, ice cream, cotton candy, phone cases to protect your phone and newspapers among other things. The streets are busy with cars, buses, motorcycles, horse drawn carts, bicycles and taxis. The motorcyclists sometimes wear a helmet but their passengers rarely do. Frequently, the rider on the back rides sideways particularly if it is a woman wearing a dress. There are some very poor areas but there are also some very affluent areas. Most places have fences and gates. Each hotel we have stayed at has had gates that are kept locked at all times unless someone is standing there keeping watch. One nice restaurant we went to had an armed guard outside as a security guard. This guard carried a very large gun. You don't see security guards in Canada doing that!

In Managua, we went directly to the market area. We were split into two groups and one group went with Lenin, one with David. We were warned to keep our money out of sight and be very vigilant. The market had a lot of stalls of local handiwork, artwork, cigars, sweets, religious items, clothing etc. Nicaragua is famous for its leatherwork, pottery, coffee and chocolate. Each of us found some treasures that we are bringing home to show our friends and family.

We are now back at Los Pinos. Some of us are having a relaxing swim in the hotel pool. I'm doing the blog early today because we are going to the SchoolBOX office for a dinner and send off gathering. I'm not sure when we will get back. Before we go for dinner we will have our reflection time with Lenin.

We will leave for home tomorrow morning. I will do another blog entry to summarize our dinner this evening and our trip home.


13th August 2011

Thanks so much for all the wonderful, detailed blog postings. They mean so much to us. We are so looking forward to all your stories when you get home!

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