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Thread: Tomorrow

  1. #1

    Default Tomorrow

    I just got a room in Hostel Pura Vida in Liberia after walking all over San Jose in the morning and taking a 4 hour bus ride to Liberia that left at noon.

    It's hot, but in a good way. I have a fan blasting over me to little effect.

    Tomorrow, my plan is to take the earliest bus that I can. I'd say the earliest, but I might sleep in past the 5:00 am bus after two days of traveling. That should allow me to cross at Penas Blancas and still make it to Rivas by noon (or early afternoon at the latest).

    It's been over a year and a half since my feet last touched Nicaraguan soil, and now the anticipation is making me grin.

    I look forward to continuing my explorations of Nicaragua's cities, small towns, roads, trails, and more. My plan is to make regular contributions to TRN once I get myself settled.

    Saludos!
    Soy el chele mono.

  2. #2
    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tomorrow

    The "bus station" in Liberia is great, has schedules posted, think every 45-60 minutes or so in the morning up to the border.
    Don't forget you have to pay CR exit tax, few spots you can do it right before you reach CR border or an ATM in immigration where you can do it. ($7-$8).

    Welcome Home. Keep us posted on your Wanderings Around.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

  3. #3

    Default Re: Tomorrow

    I caught the 6:00 am bus to the border. You're right cookshow, it was great. I walked up and directly onto a bus that left a minute later.

    I had to pay $8 as an exit tax. My slip says that it's a $7 exit tax, but they charge you an extra $1 for doing it at the border. I guess the alternative is to anticipate when you will leave and pay the tax in San Jose for $1 less.

    I was charged $12 to get into Nicaragua, and then I took the first bus to Rivas for C$50. I suspect that this might be the gringo price, but it's still the least expensive option for getting from the border to Rivas.

    So far, I've found a hostel that is charging me around $5 for the night in Rivas, I've exchanged from dollars for cordobas at 28.9 to 1, and I've purchased a $12 Claro cell phone that doesn't look like it'll charge. I'm about ready to take it back to see if they can switch out the battery or the cord or spend another C$30 for the next model up. I don't know what I was expecting for a $12 phone...

    Pali' exchanges at 29 to 1, but they won't let you buy something inexpensive to get change. I tried to buy a C$12 chivaria with a $20 bill, and they shut me down.

    I overestimated how long it would take to get from Liberia, across the border, and then to Rivas. I was here by 9:00 am, and I was in my room by 9:30 am.

    It's nearly 11:30 am as I write this, and I think that I'll take a walk to San Jorge to figure out when the ferries come and go this afternoon. It's a beautiful day in Nicaragua.
    Soy el chele mono.

  4. #4
    House SOB Little Corn Tom's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tomorrow

    LOL...sounds like a nice day so far.....
    Life's different here ... It's a whole 'nother pace.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Tomorrow

    It really is a nice day. I have come to expect far more unexpected events per day in Nicaragua, so I still feel like I'm coming out ahead.

    I went back to the place where I got my phone and waited until a muchacha finished buying a phone to talk to the woman who sold me mine. The muchacha asked the woman to plug her phone into the wall to see if it would take a charge before she accepted it. I let the woman know that the problem with mine was exactly that while she was still testing the muchacha's phone. She switched out the cord and plug, and then my phone took a charge. Before I thanked her and left the shop, I said, "Este debe ser un problema comun, si la muchacha te pidio' que lo probara antes de llevarselo."

    Then, I walked 6-7 blocks up into the mercado and got some of those inexpensive chinelas--these cost me C$60.

    After I dropped my new treasures off at my hospedaje and plugged in my phone, I started my walk to San Jorge. I had forgotten how foolish it is to start a long walk around noon, and I may have been a bit too ambitious to try this one on my first day back in Nicaragua. I can (and often do) take 4-6 hour walks back in the States, but Nicaragua is a special kind of oven.

    There are kilometer markers along the road to San Jorge, so I know that from the main carretera down to the port is about 5 kilometers. So, not counting walking from the central park cathedral down to the main carretera and up to the road to San Jorge and back, I only walked 10 kilometers. It sure felt like more.

    I was squinting for most of my walk. The sun is so bright, that I'm afraid that if I don't get some sunglasses I might burn my corneas. Also, I sweat uncontrollably the entire time. My shirt is soaked. I don't just mean under my pits or down the front. No, the entire shirt is wet. The same is true of my underwear and socks, and I even managed a sweat mark through my jeans. It's hard to explain the effect that the Nicaragua heat and sun have on the human body without experiencing it personally. Oh, and just in case some of you are thinking that I am just one of those people who sweats a lot, I took a 6 hour walk a few days before coming down here, and I don't remember sweating at all the entire time. In any case, the sweat from my head ran down into my eyes. I tried to wipe it away with my hand--only to discover that there was far more sweat on my hands than on my face. I tried to use my shirt, and I found that it couldn't absorb any more sweat. I only found relief my splashing some of my precious water into my eyes.

    As I walked down to San Jorge, I passed several pulparias with signs advertising Coke and Pepsi products. The first couple that I visited told me that the price listed on their sign was wrong. The sign said C$9 for a 500 ml Coke, and they said it cost C$10. I said to myself, "I can do better." I kept going until I reached a store that advertised a 500 ml Pepsi for C$7 (around 24 cents). I asked the girl there, and she confirmed the price. And so, I enjoyed my first drink of carbonated sugar water from a glass bottle in Nicaragua.

    I had to rest on a shaded bench in the San Jorge park to cool off. It was at this point that I realized that I had been cocky.

    The walk down to the port seemed faster from the park in San Jorge. I think most of the walk if from the carretera to San Jorge. When I got there, I discovered that La Chamuca had gotten there first. When I was last at the port in San Jorge, I was able to walk out onto the pier unblocked and unchallenged. I didn't have to pay for my ride on a ferry until I had climbed aboard. I remember hanging out in the shade of some trees behind a low stone wall and watching rats scurry everywhere. This time, I found a police presence behind a high and secure fence. In front of this, several new buildings have sprung up to sell ferry fares. I wasn't able to walk out onto the pier (without a ticket), but I wandered down to the beach on the south side, and from that perspective, I could see that the trees and small stone wall that I remember were gone--replaced by garish colored banners and cement.

    Is there any part of Nicaragua where she has not yet assimilated? I miss the rats.

    Before I left the port, I spent C$35 (around $1.20) on a two liter bottle of water. I had underestimated how much liquid I'd need to replace on this walk.

    On the way back, I passed a Sandanista gathering spot. Everyone was wearing pink shirts and holding flyers or pamphlets for distribution. It was only in this moment that I remembered that the election was right around the corner. Yeah, good timing self.

    I rested in the park again before walking back out to the carretera. I headed south to get to the road that turns west towards the cathedral, and when I got there, I noticed a Maxi-Pali on the main carretera just a block away. I deterred there to see if they had different rules about accepting $20 bills in this larger store. I walked past the automatic sliding doors and was hit with a wave of wonderful icy air. God bless air conditioning. I picked up a razor for C$10 and the exact same bag of chivarias for C$12, and they accepted my $20 without any fuss. It seems that only the normal sized Palis have issues with this. So, from here on out, I'm getting the 29 to 1 rate.

    I stopped at a restaurant that stands kitty corner from my hospedaje and bought a nacatamale for C$40. This is C$5 more than is usual, and they can even be found for as little as C$30, but this nacatamale is special. They used platanos instead of corn for the masa. In all other respects it was a normal nacatamale con cerdo, but the use of platanos made it sweeter. Yum.

    All told, my trip to the port in San Jorge and back took me 4 hours. I'm almost positive that I'm burned, but (at least until the burn tightens on me) I feel great; my belly is full of Nicaragua cuisine, and I'm comfortably weary as I lie here with a fan cycling back and forth over me.

    Saludos!
    Soy el chele mono.

  6. #6
    House SOB Little Corn Tom's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tomorrow

    Nice post.....I'll bet you get acclimated in a week or two.
    Life's different here ... It's a whole 'nother pace.

  7. #7
    Para aquí para acá Jonh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tomorrow

    Maybe carry a towel?

  8. #8

    Default Re: Tomorrow

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonh View Post
    Maybe carry a towel?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZoL7nEh3fQ
    Soy el chele mono.

  9. #9
    Viejo del Foro Daddy-YO's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tomorrow

    Quote Originally Posted by drlemcor View Post
    Nicaragua is a special kind of oven. . . . I miss the rats.
    Welcome back to the tropics. It's a pleasure reading the accounts of your walks again, drlemcor. You bring a unique perspective.

    Quote Originally Posted by drlemcor View Post
    ... a Maxi-Pali ... with a wave of wonderful icy air. God bless air conditioning. I picked up a razor for C$10 and the exact same bag of chivarias for C$12, and they accepted my $20 without any fuss. ... So, from here on out, I'm getting the 29 to 1 rate.
    Earlier you got 28.9 cords per dollar, forcing you to absorb a loss of 2 cords or almost 7¢ on $20.

    Quote Originally Posted by drlemcor View Post
    The sign said C$9 for a 500 ml Coke, and they said it cost C$10. I said to myself, "I can do better." I kept going until I reached a store that advertised a 500 ml Pepsi for C$7 (around 24 cents). I asked the girl there, and she confirmed the price. And so, I enjoyed my first drink of carbonated sugar water from a glass bottle in Nicaragua.
    Sir, you redefine 'frugal' for the frugal traveler!

    Quote Originally Posted by drlemcor View Post
    Before I left the port, I spent C$35 (around $1.20) on a two liter bottle of water. I had underestimated how much liquid I'd need to replace on this walk.
    Two liters (4X500mL) of Pepsi at that last store would have cost you C$28 - a 7 cords savings - tho, beyond the bloating from all that gas and the endocrine upset from the megadosage of caffeine, the sugar-rush would have played havoc with your body's insulin balance. So, the extra C$7 wasn't wasteful spending, it would seem. Water by the gallon is cheaper, but a load to pack. I drink tap water in Leon.

    Don't forget to keep up your body's electrolytes. All that sweat is more than water. Buy the packets 'electrolitos APO at a local farmacia, much cheaper than Gator &c.
    I never met a Semite I didn't like.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Tomorrow

    I love these posts. I'm going to start asking prices of gaseosas as a token of admiration.

    Welcome back! It's been too long.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Tomorrow

    Quote Originally Posted by Daddy-YO View Post
    Don't forget to keep up your body's electrolytes. All that sweat is more than water. Buy the packets 'electrolitos APO at a local farmacia, much cheaper than Gator &c.
    Thanks for the tip; I haven't tried this yet.
    Soy el chele mono.

  12. #12
    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tomorrow

    Welcome back, and thanx for reminding us that masochism is a valid reason for being here!
    Your walk reminds me of one I took from the ferry station from Baja to someplace in Matzatlan so many years ago. whodathunk Matzatlan was such a humongous hot sticky city.

    "Support mental health or I'll break your head"


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