We were pretty settled in on Playa Guasacate. We lived right on the beach, watched beautiful sunsets, fresh produce was delivered twice a week, hung out with the local surfers, and even got weed for a decent price, it was paradise for about two weeks.
After Blake got mugged, our energy started to turn negative and we no longer felt safe walking back at night. Even though this was the first time this happened in the area, we still felt scared walking back to our casa in the dark, we have a lot of expensive equipment. Our intention for going to Popoyo for the remainding month of our trip, was to take surf photography and that wasn’t even doing all that great, and now we lost all energy doing that. I wanted to go home. I was tired of salt water, no pressure, cold showers, gallo pinto, being hot, and sand in every nook. Where was my ‘vida nica’ attitude I had 3 days ago? I had met solo traveling lady at a local pizza place that had said something that really stuck with me. ‘If you don’t like somewhere give it 3 more days.’ And that we did, avoiding going out at night and spending our days getting stoned, reading, watching the seagulls, and swimming in the tide pools.
Well…7 days later and we’re on the back of motorbikes, chasing down the bus to head to Granada. We were on our way to El Castillo, located in the southeast of Nicaragua. Our original plan was to take a 14 hour ferry from Granada to San Carlos, across Lake Nicaragua, so we had a couple days wait in Granada. Exploring time!
The day before we were supposed to catch our ferry we found out that the ferry stopped running coz the lake is too low. Soooooo, we decided to bus it all the way around the lake. Starting at 5 in the morning, we began our trek to San Carlos, not arriving until 4 that afternoon, with only 1 pee break. The bus ride from Managua to San Carlos was soo packed, the entire way. I was grateful that we had arrived early and got seats, but we were not prepared for the 7 hour bus ride with only one stop. Man, Nica’s have super bladders. When we finally got to San Carlos, we just missed the last water taxi by 5 minutes to El Castillo, so we had to stay the night and continue our trek the next morning. A 3 hour boat ride, and we had finally arrived in El Castillo.
El Castillo is a quiet little river town, which an old Spanish fortress was built to protect the country from invaders and pirates. Ships would come up Rio San Juan, and travel across Lake Nicaragua, sails set for Granada. Being only accessible by boat, in the middle of no where, with no internet or vehicles, really gave it it’s charm.
A biologist from Germany invited us on a night hike, with hopes of finding a red-eye tree frog, whose eggs he had spotted early that day. We only heard this tree frog, but caught lots of other critters.
We went even deeper into the jungle, into the Indio Maiz Biological Reserve. We were on our way up river to Basecamp Bartola, in dug-out canoes, for 3 days. This was my favorite part of Nicaragua. We camped under the stars, went on a night canoe trip to spot Cayman, a waterfall hike, rode horses to learn how to make chocolate, and I SAW A SLOTH!
3 days went waaayyy too fast. Before I knew it, we were on the water taxi, to catch the 7 hour bus to Managua, to then catch a bus to Leon. We prepared ourselves this time, not drinking any water the night before, or that morning. Thank goodness, coz the bus did not stop till Managua. When I say it didn’t stop, I mean it did stop to let passengers on and off, but it wasn’t waiting around for you to do your business. We caught the last bus heading to Leon, finally arriving after 13 hours of traveling.
We spent 5 days in Leon, exploring the Beautiful colonial city, smoking weed from Honduras, letting time pass by, waiting till we head to Masaya one last time before catching our 1am flight to Houston.
We were ready to leave Nicaragua, to be back in Colorado. Ready for hot showers, sweet potatoes, almond milk, IPAs, and the light switch to be where it belongs. Nicaragua was a wonderful experience and we met some amazing people, but Colorado was calling us home.We still have a couple of days in Atlanta, Blake’s sister’s wedding in Louisiana, and a couple of days in New Orleans, then we’ll officially be in Colorado. March 2nd can’t come soon enough, I just gotta remind myself to be here, in THIS moment.