Well we´ve only got a few days left here in Nicaragua. We´re hoping to make the most out of this beach town. Today once we got up we headed out for breakfast and to book some surfing for Friday. We ended up booking the surfing lessons and rentals at SJDS Surf and Sport which is a block south of El Puerto, our hotel. Grabbed some breakfast across the street at a little comedor Itxel I think. I´ve decided I like my eggs ranchero as it´s kinda spicy. I paid with a two hundred cord note. I haven´t had a problem doing that in SJDS but apparently today it took some work to find me change. It would seem everyone is used to being paid exact change, which is insanely difficult for a tourist to do as the bank machines give money to you in 200s if you´re lucky, but most likely 500s. Don´t ask how to break those up, we try to save them for tours and hotels and hope for some change to get by on everything else. Shopping in the next few days will be interesting when I don´t have money to barter correctly with. So tour is booked for tomorrow morning to go surfing which should be fun as I´ve never tried that before nor has Lindsay.
We made a quick stop in Casa Oro to find out about turtles, still no news, it´s not looking promising. We headed back to the hotel and got the very friendly and helpful german lady owner to call Da Flying Frog zipline outside of town for us to see if we could go. They were able to take us about half an hour later so at 10 am we started off on another zipline tour. They picked us up in a land rover type truck, shoved us in the back and then drove the 10 minutes or so to the ranch that the zipline starts at. We met up with the rest of the group going. A few white folk from New Jersey and two large black women from Miami. The black women were a riot and very entertaining for the whole time. We all got safety geared up which involved some awesome looking helmets this time. They were a cross between a stormtrooper helmet (the original nazi guys, not star wars), spaceballs darth guy, and a penis) We all looked quite ridiculous.
Once ready to go we hopped into the back of a bigger truck for the ride up the hill to the starting point. Good thing we were wearing the helmets as you hit the metal bars framing the truck quite a lot. Once we arrived the Americans had Lindsay and I go first as we had done this before and the miami ladies were a tad bit scared. This course was very different than the last one near Granada. Granada´s was built high up in the trees over relatively level ground, this one was more from hillside to hillside with a few places with high up tree platforms. Still quite great and had some spectacular views of the bay with the town. We took a few videos while going so hopefully those will make it up here sometime in the future once we have steady internet and hard drive space….things to buy when we get home, hard drive space.
So ziplining went great. I went upside down again, hurts your back a bit, and Lindsay supermanned one more time. At one point the larger black lady was going to go with the guide on a longer one where you needed to brake the whole way down. She gave him this look like “as if your puny little muscles are going to stop me on this super long fast cable”, then she said to everybody that “he has tiny little muscles” and then they were gone. pretty funny and her face was priceless. We finished off the course in an hour and a bit. It takes longer than the Granada one, but our experience at the Granada one was more fun we´ve decided because of all the crazy tricks that the guides did there that I´m sure would never be allowed in North America.
Made it back in to town about lunch time and decided to get desert for lunch so we went back to Barriocafe and got our Chocolate brownies with ice cream. Very tasty. Lindsay even had a frappachino in Nicarauga which apparently was pretty good if you like the taste of dirt I guess. Afterwards we wandered town taking pictures and checking the place out. The park is kind of fun with multicolured park benches throughout and is next to a church, no way who would have thought, that is a nice blue on the outside and wood lined inside. That was a pretty cool feature as nothing down here is really wood so this was a novelty for once. It looked pretty cool as always. Checked out the library to see where to buy a spanish bible, apparently no where in this town. Then while walking the one side street we hadn´t yet to the other side of town we saw something that neither of us expected to see on this trip, not even a passing thought. We´re walking along, look up at this one building, and there is a big Calgary Flames flag. We did a double take and had a good laugh then took pics. Turns out it´s a hostel of sorts owned by two Canadians one of which is from Calgary. Made it to a bakery near our hotel run by a Chicagoan and had some tasty foccacia as the second half of lunch. Only here is there this mix of foreigners taking up shop, the surfing beach town lends itself to slowly being colonized. The rest of the country is a better authentic experience. Lindsay and I think that if anybody else is thinking of coming to Nicaragua for a trip, which you should as it is great, unless you´re big into surfing or show up during the turltle times, don´t come to SJDS. Too touristy. The rest of the country is way better and you´ll want to spend your time on Ometepe or Granada, Leon, Esteli, Somoto, Matagalpa, etc…
After a break we headed to the beach. Upon getting there all sunscreened up andtaking off my shirt, it got cloudy. We didn´t stay too long and instead wandered south down the beach to see what the big red barn looking house was. Turns out it´s a Claro (cell company) building. You can tell who´s rich down here by there vechicles and buildings and staff. Flor de Cana (rum company), Toña and Victoria (beer), Claro and Movistar (cell phones, stupid cell companies worldwide, bah).
On the way over we had a nice surprise though. We sat on the edge of the boardwalk and watched what seems to be a weekly baseball game. Not a lot of open field space here so they of course play on the beach. It was great. Ball floats a bit. seems to be made of wood or metal wrapped in tape of some sort. Very entertaining game and you can actually run pretty darn fast on the wet sand in bare feet, perhaps we should start a leg back home. Not a lot of gloves to go around down here and there was only one bat, so if they lose that they´ll have to use a stick but then they probably won´t hit it to the surf quite as well….
Stopped in at the kids playground type place across the street and watched some soccer barefoot for the most part, they´re way better than us that´s for sure. Eventually we made it back to the room showered and then headed back out for supper. Tried some place along the beach front for dinner. Can´t remember the name, wish I could, it wasn´t worth the money. Food was meh and I was wishing we had gone back to that chicken place we found the first night…win some lose some. Stopped at Casa Oro on the way to dinner to see if turtles were a go. No. I´m very sad and dissapointed and annoyed at whomever has La Flor closed. We got our money back as tours won´t resume until Saturday we were told and we won´t be here. Buggers.
Again crashed into our bed and slept for many many hours, minus the rooster that doesn´t know what time of day it´s supposed to crow at. Not 3:30 in the morning in case you were wondering. He can´t even crow right either, it´s cock a doodle greeegguugg. Strange bird.
Buenos Noches, off to surfing tomorrow.