Culture / traveling abroad

We Traveled To Nicaragua And The Unexpected Happened.

I don’t know where to start, but I’m gonna mention a few random things that come to mind when I think about Nicaragua….

HOT. NO WATER. FISH. RONDÓN. STREET FOOD. FRIENDS.

HOT is the first damn thing that comes to mind.

For real. The heat can be unbearable at times. Most homes and business do not have air conditioners but you will be welcomed with tons of portable fans, ceiling fans turned up to the max to keep you somewhat cool. There’s no hot water in Nicaragua, the water will shut off unexpectedly, you will sweat profusely, change your clothes twice a day, eat some good ass street food, make friends and eventually end up doing a volcano boarding ride before you leave.
Those are the few things that instantly come to mind as I write to tell you about our stay during the summer months of May-June 2016 in Nicaragua.

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Tara

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Kim

However- the one thing that really happened to us while living there?

WE MADE FRIENDS.

Yes, it’s true. We made friends that will stick around with us for a long time, and I appreciate that. Being in LA we live in our cars, working an 8-10 hr shift and when it’s to time socialize or wind down—It’s probably work related. But I can indeed say Kim, and I met some cool peeps that were naturally organic without the hassle of trying. Not only here- but on all of our travels. But for now, I want to talk about our relationships we encountered in Nicaragua.

Katie and Mark. Katie and Mark were: COOL. AS. HELL.
They both were from SoCal and made us feel right at home. We met the two while volunteering at Trail Wind Hostel and Imbir Restaurant while celebrating a friends birthday. Kim made fresh mojitos back to back for them, and we clicked instantly.
They made us feel right at home taking us to the beach, having us over for dinner, making us laugh, and Mark made these amazing homemade blueberry cookies from scratch that were soooooo good it was the best sweetest thing we came to know!

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Vick and Adrianna. We met these two travelers (originally from Mexico) while volunteering at Trail Winds Hostel and Imbir Restaurant. These two were like family. While working here, we did so much together in a short amount of time. We made sure we were up for work every day by knocking on each other’s doors by 6:30 am. We learned so much about each other, sharing our travel stories and what sacrifices we made to go to Central America.

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Left to Right: Kim, Me, Vick, Adrianna

Oh–Did I mention Vick and Adrianna has a special love for tacos?! Vick loves them so much he has a tattoo of a taco on his arm! And Adrianna takes pride in rolling the doe getting it just right.
On our day off they made sure we had the most authentic tasty tacos made from scratch, and all we did was listen, prepped, sliced, diced and celebrated with beer and wine enjoying our meal and tons of laughter.

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Taco Time!

prepping in the kitchen

Louisa and Abi. Louisa and Abi were two travelers volunteering as well for Trail Wind Hostel and Imbir Restaurant.

Louisa, Kim, Me, Abi

Louisa was the baby of the crew from Massachusetts. It was her first time traveling abroad and I remember her father calling (being a father) to check on his little girl whereabouts and keeping her informed about what was happening back home.  We did the same thing, looking out for her making sure she was ok, questioning where she was going, keeping her close at bay. We understood. It was all in love.

While on the job, Louisa was very skilled at tying knots (from working on sailboats) and could rig up any ole hammock on the property. She would let you know in so many words that she was not a newbie on this task.   “I know my knots” – Louisa.

Louisa

Abi was from London who called me “Auntie Tara.” I loved to hear her speak with her strong British accent when she spoke. She was always underneath Kim and me whenever we would all get together. Dinner. Lunch. Happy hour.  Whatever it was– she was there. She was also a little more advanced in her Spanish and would tutor Kim on their off days to help her improve in her weak areas.

Abi always had us laughing especially when we asked her about how she knew about XY and Z, her response was always, “Well– I know a guy—who knows a guy…”– Abi

Louisa, me, Abi, Kim

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Kim, Me, Abi

Then there was Denlar.  Born and raised on Big Corn Island, Nicaragua.

Kim, Denlar, Me

Denlar was the dude that told us “You haven’t seen my island yet, I’ll show you the real Corn Island”. –Denlar

A Man Of His Word. The next day he knocked on our door, and we followed him on our rental moped to see the most sacred places he loves, like going to one of the pyramids on the islands, showing us where he and his friends would skip school to climb the watch towers just to chill, laugh and have a panoramic view of the whole island. And yes, we did that! We climbed the watch towers to experience the lovely view of the beautiful island.

Denlar also took us to meet his entire family as well,  starting with his grandmother on down to his mother, brother, cousins, nieces, and nephews. Talk about the love! The family cooked us a home cooked meal of rondón, and we all broke bread together. MAN! We had such a good time! We were all a little big family on his island of Big Corn, Island Nicaragua.

Denlar and Mother

Big Corn Island, Nicaragua

So, as you see– we didn’t get robbed, attacked, went missing, we were “not” fearful of anything, Yes, we met other travelers and expats from America, and we blended right in.
We were a little family abroad that looked out for each other while meeting locals who were spreading their love and support while living there.

We honestly went there with an open mind wanting an authentic cultural experience. And I must say Kim & I had that magic touch with people we met while traveling. Also known as “The Girls”.  I’ll talk about that in another post.

Yeah.. It was like that there in Nicaragua. We laughed, cried, talked about petty shit, helped each other get better with our Spanish and shared so many stories there. If you ever pack your bags and travel abroad to visit Nicaragua, expect to be welcomed and look forward to having long-lasting friendships.

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