Well, I’m just a tad late writing this post considering our week in Granada was over a month ago, but better late than never, right?
Early one February morning we woke up in Ometepe, packed our bags for about the hundreth time, and headed across the lake to the sun baked colonial town of Granada. We arrived on the first day of a week long poetry festival, which is a very big deal to Nicaraguans. Poetry has long been a cultural expression here, spreading radical and revolutionary ideas across the nation. People of all ages and all walks of life get into the poetic mood, and Granada is the perfect setting for all of it, with it’s cobble stone streets and Spanish architecture. There are restaurants and artist galleries everywhere as well as a very bustling market that takes up three city blocks and sells everything from raw meat and rice to lottery tickets and imitation crocs. It was a festival atmosphere all week long, with parades, bands, street food and street performances. Dave got all romantic and put a pretty tiger’s eye ring in my dessert on Valentine’s Day, and surprised Sadie with a pretty pink dress in the traditional Nicaraguan style.
The last pic is of Esteban, our fun loving host at our first hostel, La Floresta. He splits his time between his family business in Nicaragua and Miami and he made us feel like family at home in his colorful abode.
We took two day trips out of Granada this week. The first was just one town over to Masaya to see a baseball game. Baseball is huge in Nicaragua and also in our family, and the beer, hotdogs and peanuts were all there making us feel right at home. After the game we walked through Masaya’s huge souvenir market and played with the local kids at the park. We even met a clown, Sadie was not a fan.
Our other trip was out to Laguna de Opoyo, which I probably just spelled wrong. It’s a crater lake on the top of a mountain and the day was so perfectly sunny and beautiful. We hung out beachside letting Sadie play and watched people kayaking and windsurfing on the lake. The air was so pure and the mood so relaxing that we never wanted to leave. A few days later we met Sven, a very energetic and enthusiastic German guy who proposed that we three start a hostel of our own on the shores of the laguna. It’s a very tempting prospect and a dream of Dave’s and mine to live abroad some day and operate a hostel where we can meet people from all over the world. Maybe this is our golden opportunity… Sven, who changed his name from “Daily Rocker,” no kidding, gave us a ride to the airport a few days later, and he is one of the nicest, most sincerely generous people we have ever met.
We spent a very memorable week amongst the poets, hippies, hustlers, beggars, artists and travelers of Granada, one that we will never forget.