Nicaragua day 2: Sunday, May 17 2009

cimg4287Very good morning to you all..
Few rosters woke me up early in the morning, it was only 5am for Pete’s sake. Did Zhou Bapi 周扒皮 live in Nica too 🙂
*in PJ*
Wow .. the view from the bedroom is spectacular.
I rubbed my eyes ..
rolled out of the bed
went downstairs
I wasn’t the first one who got up ..
unwashed face
unbrushed tooth
unkempt hair
Who cared?
We were all basking in the soft morning glow ..
the golden hue ..
the dews ..
the mango ..
the coconuts ..
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Couple of Ocean Sixers went to hunting .. .. and soon returned triumphantly, fully loaded with mango and coconuts ..

Coldwell Banker Real Estate as well as Century 21 have presence there..

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Her house is lovely, woody, Mahogany is everywhere.

My little dingy Casio camera wasn’t good enough, so Lou let me use his spare one. The pictures taken from now on are from his Panasonic Lumix with Leica lens.

The entrance to DQ’s house

Thou shalt love thy neighbour

The neat road between the haves vs haven’ts is paved by hexagon bricks, “Somoza stones”, after the dictator who bought them from himself by the millions.

one of the better ones ..

The other side of her house faces the commoners, the plebs .. she and the expats hire a night watcher. My gut feeling tells me that the Nica is relatively unspoiled, people are nice and don’t yet know the common ills that plague our modern society. Bernard the Madoff is a light years away for them.

First thing first: heading to Jockey Club for couple sets of tennis.
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Group pics .. watching Larry to sweat it out there .. The club has a lap pool but was abandoned, what a shame! A local family was in the pool, a lady with few kids. Not sure they were the caretakers’ family or the club member. The two tennis courts were paved with bricks, was fine to play.

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We headed to downtown Granada.

The food ..

The busy market is just couple of blocks away from her downtown home Quinta Granadina. All those one story homes reminded me of siheyuan in Beijing: monotonous from the outside but behind the closed doors, there are quite another world, with elaborated layouts/courtyards and stories.

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As we were lingering in the house (three bedrooms), a group of six girls walked by – originally from Michigan now living/working in New York – looking for the hotel they had reservation. They walked around the block twice but failed to find their hotel. Clay told them this house’s for rent, so they walked in, and loving it. DQ charged them US$60 per night for the entire house.

The living room, dining room and kitchen are open-air style. The bedrooms are conventional enclosed with bathrooms and a/c. Washer and dryer are out door too. dsc_1228 p1030188 bedroom living room
Big deal to plugging down 3 Andrew Jackson.

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Next door to her house is an Internet Cafe.

where to .. a bmw

Masaya marketWe headed to Masaya market for lunch and shopped there too. The little castle looked pretty neat. The fish soup was good. The bill came for 8 of us was US$122. Cohiba cigar with Cuba printed on the label cost US$25 for a pack of 25. Again, they take US$. I bought a fun table and few pieces of wood jars. One of them was broken: me, Irene, never look/check .. and would never learn. I’m too old .. you can’t teach an old dog a new trick 🙂
Shouldn’t the vendor tell me that? I think they should.
If wasn’t for the group was waiting, I would have gathered more junks.
Thank lord I showed my junks to Juan: he spotted the broken and glued jar that was intended for Pumpkin..


First thing you should know when visiting a volcano: park your car facing the exit .. just in case.

Come to think of it, how useful will it be? Will the four wheels out run the lavas?

The smell of sulfur, like rotten eggs smell from the hydrogen sulfide at Masaya Volcano was strong.

At the top – Bobadilla Cross, DQ climbed to the pole in no time.

“The view is great ..”

So .. we asked a Dad to do the same. I was bit worried: the Dad didn’t look as fit as DQ .. but he complied without hesitation.

dsc_1328The sign reads ..
Welcome to the Trail
Lookout Bobadilla Cross
This is an active volcano that offers adventure tourisms. So that to visit this viewer that has 177 steps you assume the risk.
the sign reads ...We suggest you
Time for stay is 15 to 20 minutes.
When gases affect, leave the area.
If you have health problem don’t climb up.
This viewer has a capacity for 20 people.
Students climb up in groups of 20 with a teacher.
Kids less than 12 years old must be accompanied by an adult.
By your security this lookout can be closed any time.

According to Wikipedia, Masaya Volcano is a Shield volcano located 20 km south of Managua, Nicaragua. It is Nicaragua’s first and largest National Park, and one of 78 protected areas of Nicaragua. The volcanic complex is composed of a nested set of calderas and craters, the largest of which is Las Sierras shield volcano and caldera.
the family
After the photo, Lou climbed up and reciprocated ..

The parents said very little, to themselves and to us. They might not be English speakers. The son needed to be coaxed into the picture. I thought only my kids are allergic to photo taking .. guess it’s universal children disease 🙂 and we parents have camera totting syndrome.

was I laughing or crying? dsc_1347
Was I laughing or crying? Very amusing.

The last event of the day, before dinner (food, under any circumstances, would not stay far from my mind .. Nainai used to say .. 吃货 .. and I don’t suppose it’s a compliment) was to visit DQ’s little hide out, her island – La Isleta de Phoebe.

her little paradise

Lake Nicaragua (Lago de Nicaragua) is the largest lake in Central America, has sharks, sawfish, tarpon, and least 16 species of endemic cichlids.

Bull shark is known for entering freshwater elsewhere around the world. It had been presumed that the sharks were trapped within the lake, but this was found to be incorrect in the late 1960s, when it was discovered that they were able to jump along the rapids of the San Juan River (which connects Lake Nicaragua and the Caribbean Sea), almost like salmon; the journey takes as little as 7-11 days.

the drink

It has 365 islands – mostly owned by Americans/Canadians. The water taxi took us to her island in about 10 minutes. Some island owners have their own speed boats.

SF a well-developed island monkey her neighbors

The largest island in the lake has 40,000 residents, a commune.

the escape boat on her island

The year around owners of the islands cable in the electricity, pipes in the water and the sewage goes into the lake.

the shark

I jumped into the lake in no time, intended to swim to few islands. But the water was too warm to swim. Ok, it’s my third excuse. The most on my mind was the sewer. The shark was the distant second.

The sky was getting darker. The cloud ruined our opportunity to watch a specular sun set.

Larry didn’t catch a fish. But we managed to buy few, 7 Tilapias for $1 and made soup out of them. Nainai used to lightly fried the fish and then boil with radish. Before we left, we asked the taxi driver take us to another island to buy couple of hens that grow the old fashion way. The two skinny things cost $10. How did we eat them?

More pictures on FB .. few more pix .. Day 3

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