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Thread: Renewing my tourist visa

  1. #1
    Viejo del Foro Daddy-YO's Avatar
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    Default Renewing my tourist visa

    I went to Migracion Central in Managua alone to extend my visa another 90 days. Waited 3½ hours sweating, trying to discern if any of the heavyweight clerks behind the glass in the frigid A/C'd offices would attend me. I came with proof of marriage to a Nica, our Nica son, and her kids - all dependent on me, which in past years was my ticket to stay another 3 months - but not this year. The best they offered was 30 days. I refused to come back & suffer thru that disorganized Soviet ape show again. I suspect the Nicas of officialdom have been told to remove the welcome mat to us sons of imperialists. Regular Nicas are as genuine and good as ever, but the Stasi are slowly turning all grey-black here.

    A border crossing into CR gets me a 90 day visa on returning to this CA-4 country. The last time I did that I went cheap via inter-local thru Diriamba to Rivas. But they picked up a guy - despite having no seats available - in the middle of nowhere, who evidently had slept in the field, judging from the flora on his clothes & in his hair. He sat on an inverted bucket in the aisle beside me, rubbing up against me. I got lice, bad. So this trip I’ll ride the TicaBus, round trip since CR requires a ticket out to get in.

    Two years ago the whole family went to Migracion to get our boy’s permission stamp on his Nica passport in order to exit. Even more of a headache than a simple visa extension requiring legal boilerplate that the lawyers working under black plastic covered lean-to’s across the street supply for a fee, and both parents & the kid present with full documentation. Happy to escape with the permit we hopped into the first taxi at the curb - a Soviet Lada. The driver told me I should fasten my seatbelt - I rode shotgun, and assumed he was worried about the poli-poli taking a bite out of his wallet if I didn’t. A few minutes later we slammed head-on into the side of a HiLux that had run a stop sign. We were going some 25-30 mph I’d judge. It happen beside a fire station and trainees were all over us before I could orient. Soon channel 10 was there to interview us, but we refused. Those in the back got scrapes and a bloody nose. I got a bruised rib that took weeks to heal, but without the seatbelt I probably would have eaten windshield. All of us were very discombobulated - the trauma overloaded perception, delaying cognition. We all walked off toward a local hospital (Baptist), but by the time we got there all seemed OK, so we flagged a taxi and continued on to Plaza Inter and got pain killers at a farmacia. The Lada was a total wreck. When we passed by I asked the driver to return the fare I’d paid in advance. He said nothing.

    So I dread Migracion. OK, you probably wondering why not become a ‘resident’ after 13 years of doing tourist visas? Using Nicaragua as our snowbirds’ destination for half of each year has become strained. I hate the idea of having to ask their ‘permission’ to leave. My wife is a US resident and she/we come & go with any such bureaucratic rigmarole. I kept my house up North thru the worst of the recession. I am at the point of bringing all to Jersey to stay and use what I pay in rent here to cover the bill to heat & cool our home. But, I know, that like tropical flowers in the cold North, they’ll fade without being immersed in Nicaragua. All depends on how odious Nicaragua becomes.
    I never met a Semite I didn't like.

  2. #2
    Para aquí para acá Jonh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    I'd have asked the taxi driver for lotto numbers.

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    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    The pissing contest is contagious. I was refused entrance to Hond. because I am a Nica legal resident, and then refused entrance as a US passport holder because I had been in Nic. for more than 90 days. My wife was refused return passage from thieving Transportes del Sol despite having registered online with the anal retentive republic of honduras.


    CA is getting more SH by the day.

    PS-- my wife is bitterly resentful of living in the mind robbing, life robbing countryside, but would she do any better in AZ?

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


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    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by Daddy-YO View Post
    The Lada was a total wreck.
    Ha - It has been rebuilt and is putting around some neighborhood of Managua today.
    ==================================================
    Dude !!!.... Its a Canal !!! Can you Dig it ??

  5. #5

    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by Daddy-YO View Post
    I went to Migracion Central in Managua alone to extend my visa another 90 days. Waited 3½ hours sweating, trying to discern if any of the heavyweight clerks behind the glass in the frigid A/C'd offices would attend me. I came with proof of marriage to a Nica, our Nica son, and her kids - all dependent on me, which in past years was my ticket to stay another 3 months - but not this year. The best they offered was 30 days. I refused to come back & suffer thru that disorganized Soviet ape show again. I suspect the Nicas of officialdom have been told to remove the welcome mat to us sons of imperialists. Regular Nicas are as genuine and good as ever, but the Stasi are slowly turning all grey-black here.

    A border crossing into CR gets me a 90 day visa on returning to this CA-4 country. The last time I did that I went cheap via inter-local thru Diriamba to Rivas. But they picked up a guy - despite having no seats available - in the middle of nowhere, who evidently had slept in the field, judging from the flora on his clothes & in his hair. He sat on an inverted bucket in the aisle beside me, rubbing up against me. I got lice, bad. So this trip I’ll ride the TicaBus, round trip since CR requires a ticket out to get in.

    Two years ago the whole family went to Migracion to get our boy’s permission stamp on his Nica passport in order to exit. Even more of a headache than a simple visa extension requiring legal boilerplate that the lawyers working under black plastic covered lean-to’s across the street supply for a fee, and both parents & the kid present with full documentation. Happy to escape with the permit we hopped into the first taxi at the curb - a Soviet Lada. The driver told me I should fasten my seatbelt - I rode shotgun, and assumed he was worried about the poli-poli taking a bite out of his wallet if I didn’t. A few minutes later we slammed head-on into the side of a HiLux that had run a stop sign. We were going some 25-30 mph I’d judge. It happen beside a fire station and trainees were all over us before I could orient. Soon channel 10 was there to interview us, but we refused. Those in the back got scrapes and a bloody nose. I got a bruised rib that took weeks to heal, but without the seatbelt I probably would have eaten windshield. All of us were very discombobulated - the trauma overloaded perception, delaying cognition. We all walked off toward a local hospital (Baptist), but by the time we got there all seemed OK, so we flagged a taxi and continued on to Plaza Inter and got pain killers at a farmacia. The Lada was a total wreck. When we passed by I asked the driver to return the fare I’d paid in advance. He said nothing.

    So I dread Migracion. OK, you probably wondering why not become a ‘resident’ after 13 years of doing tourist visas? Using Nicaragua as our snowbirds’ destination for half of each year has become strained. I hate the idea of having to ask their ‘permission’ to leave. My wife is a US resident and she/we come & go with any such bureaucratic rigmarole. I kept my house up North thru the worst of the recession. I am at the point of bringing all to Jersey to stay and use what I pay in rent here to cover the bill to heat & cool our home. But, I know, that like tropical flowers in the cold North, they’ll fade without being immersed in Nicaragua. All depends on how odious Nicaragua becomes.

    I love these stories. You wake up in the morning never knowing what your day holds for you. Not Tucson. It's Tuesday, supermarket flyers are out!!! Oh, boy!

    I like it here,, just everything takes so long. Part of it is full employment,, it required two people at Saab to help me with $25 worth of purchases. "Pase a la caja, por favor" when I hand my card to the woman who retrieved my stuff. Saab was empty too.


    I had a good day yesterday. Sinsa was a ghost town,, five guys in the bodega to grab 5 tubos (Well, four,, that is all they had), cut my wire, I'm out of there.

    But, at 5ish, La Colonia was packed.

    My best coup of the day was my run down the hill. Not a single vehicle, not even a MC. What the hell is going on? Bridge out, maybe??

    No, there's the bridge,, nobody on it, it's one lane, pretty long. So, I'm mulling over all of this,, and I glance to the left,, , and there's transito. I don't have my seat belt fastened,, there is NEVER transito on the east side of the bridge.
    But, the bridge is empty, they see me the same instant I see them,, they don't have time to wave me over, I'm onto the bridge and home free.

    Dreaming of a Gringo, Toña, a rosti pollo for lunch , is their undoing.

    There used to be 3 transito stops between Condega and Estelí,, but lately,, nothing. I knew all their stops, always shaded, around a curve.

    No transito in Estelí either.

  6. #6
    House SOB Little Corn Tom's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    LMAO over these two posts...
    Life's different here ... It's a whole 'nother pace.

  7. #7
    Viejo del Foro Daddy-YO's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    In Managua to have a tooth capped, I visited TransNica, while the sculptured, ceramic piece sintered in the oven, to see if I could leave for CR that day. After the dentist glued it in place for the final time, I rushed & caught the last bus, 1:00pm, with 15 min to spare. $50 round trip Managua<=>San Jose; cost the same tho I only went to Liberia, CR. By 3:40 we were at the border. Exiting Nicaragua cost me $4 (132 cords) using the bus’ helper. The CR side was a quick walk thru (having my exit ticket). I hit their ATM for 20k colones - I thought I’d get a few bills, but nope, just one cartoonish-looking thing - cost me just under $33. Thru Liberia at 6:00 the bus left me and a surfer out on the highway a mile out of town in the dark. Apparently TransNica has no legal rights to stop in town. Fortunately the driver had phoned a ‘taxi’ friend (a red car, but not a taxi) who arrived behind the bus. He charged 1000 colones to take me to Hotel Boyeros but it was full & fully booked for the next nite. The driver couldn’t make change for the 20k, and so he took me to another place, Hotel Siesta - a nice enough place, clean with A/C, TV, wifi, hot water shower, pool, breakfast, full bed for 25k ($41) - and charged me 2000, which he had change for.

    Tho the wifi was spotty, the Siesta hotel was pleasant enough that I opted for another nite there. A new, sweet, good-looking receptionist charged me 25,000, but said my credit card was rejected. I told her it’s good, try again. No problem. My bank later informed me that they refused to pay the earlier $25,000 (US dollars) charge. Colones can be a pain in the ass. There I met a retired Canadian living in Granada with a young babe and her daughter and we pal’d around, shooting the shit over meals & beers. The Toro Negro just past the central park had excellent buffalo steaks.

    My return ticket was open. TransNica gave me a number in CR to call to make a reservation. After a day in Liberia I decided to go back. So I called & called on day 2 - no one ever answered. Looking on their FB page it instructed me to send a message to their WhatsApp number with a foto of the ticket and one of my passport data page. Which I did. Without a response an hour later I phoned Managua and they set me up directly. Their last bus out of San Jose left there at 9am. I estimated it’d get to Liberia 1:00 to 1:30. Managua told me noon . . . and to be there early. An hour later their WhatsApp replied: 12:30, be early. The bus stop is across from the Taco Bell, under the overpass. I got there at 11, had a chicken chalupa and several self-served refills of ice tea in TB’s A/C’d box. Outside grease was in the air: McD’s and Bugger King sat on the other two corners of this intersection, KFC half a block away. From what I thought was McD’s PA system I heard two songs on continuous loop: the Police’s “I’ll be watching you” and “I want to get away. I want to fly . . . yeah, yeah, yeah.” Then I realized it was this gringo couple that jumped in front of traffic when the light changed red. The gal, with thick glasses and short shorts, sang with a microphone (bluetoothed to speakers?), while he, too tall, strummed a guitar that I don’t believe any could hear. Then they’d pass with straw hats in hands by car windows mostly closed and scramble back to the shade of the overpass when the light turned green, Traffic was pretty heavy.

    My bus arrived at 1:16. We were at the border in an hour and left by 3:30. I didn’t give the assistant who collect passports (& money) mine. He said it’d cost $22 (CR + Nica). The CR foreigner exit fee cost me $8 tho the receipt & customs guy said $7 (not sure who was skimming). At least I was able to dump the last of my colones here. Entering Nicaragua cost $10 (Inst. Nica Turism) + $2 (Min de Gob). US dollars. They would/could not accept Cordovas. I said, “But this is Nicaraguan money.” Silence. Nonetheless, mission accomplished - got another 90 day visa. And none of this HO-border nonsense about filing a 7-day advance notice of crossing. I may have saved a buck or two going thru customs on my own, but it really wasn’t worth it. Tho the two lines were short when I arrived, the agents took forever with some people. When a new line opened I passed thru.

    They have really beefed up the wall around the Nica side (higher reinforced cement block and rolls of new razor wire) plus there’s extensive construction of modern office buildings going on. It’s a stark contrast to the shade tree filled CR side. It’s a barren, dusty, dry, sun-bleached expanse - like an unwelcome mat.

    The comfort & speed of an A/C’d luxury bus was nice. The A/C was just right - I didn’t need to bring a jacket. (Years ago I froze on a TicaBus.) On both legs of my journey the TransNica bus was only a third full, if that. Everybody got two seats with enough left to move to for an interesting movie. Seats leaning well back made for easy napping. I only spent two days, but CR is expensive. One can be philosophical about it: two days of relaxing diversion. But strictly looking at the bottom line, Migracion Central in Managua would have only cost me 1500 cords, under $50. Being older and married to a Nica for 12 years, I seemed to have lost my sense of adventure. Not that I didn’t enjoy my Liberian liberty.
    I never met a Semite I didn't like.

  8. #8
    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Ever try the Migracion in Metrocentro? I think it has AC.
    On the Nic side of the border they charge you a $1 city tax for walking on their sidewalk, etc.

    Amazed at what appears new technology--my Nica cel worked at Nic. immigration, but not on the CR side. Has it come to the point that they can pin point cel signals?

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


  9. #9
    Viejo del Foro Daddy-YO's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by el duende grande View Post
    Ever try the Migracion in Metrocentro? I think it has AC.
    It does. And yes, I went there first - no go.

    My cell phone - a soon-to-be illegal Huawei? - went screwy. Tho I turned off mobile data LTE in CR, using only wifi, I was unable to recover MS' mobile data back in Nica-wonderland. An MS guru at MetroCentro was befuddled but managed to recovery my service (to his admitted consternation).
    I never met a Semite I didn't like.

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    Para aquí para acá Jonh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Amazon still sells Huaweis. I read that they’re actually better than Apple or Samsung, and they’re being banned because they don’t contain the NSA’s backdoor surveillance circuitry like Apple and Samsung allegedly have.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Wasn't that Big Wang's rice bowl,, Huawei?
    It's everywhere in Nicaragua. My MoviStar router is a Huawei. Kind of sucky range, but I have a range extender somewhere in my stuff.

    Wasn't the canal supposed to be finished last year?
    I lost track of the timeline.

    With everything going on,, $11 billion of investment this year according to Juan "reincarnation of Sandino" Ortega,, I'm going to have to buy a bigger whiteboard to track it all.

  12. #12
    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by KeyWestPirate View Post
    Wasn't that Big Wang's rice bowl,, Huawei?
    It's everywhere in Nicaragua. My MoviStar router is a Huawei.
    Naw his Co. had a different name.

    Huawei is everywhere - The snapped up a bunch of Blackberry people and have set up shop in our town, but since we held their CFO for your FBI (or justice Dept, forget which) we are going to take a bullet for the US with a lot of that going away..

    Now as we see with the land of the not quite, you let the rule of law go, and the downfall of the structure of society is not far behind. So its gotta be done.
    ==================================================
    Dude !!!.... Its a Canal !!! Can you Dig it ??

  13. #13
    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Beside his interest in HKND, Jing has involvements in project consulting, mining, and agribusiness. A project to develop a Black Sea deep water seaport north of Sevastopol is on hold due to political instability.[4]
    In November 2015, it was reported that the Nicaragua Canal project had been delayed due to environmental impact assessment, and a collapse in the Chinese stock market which meant that Wang Jing's net worth, at one time over $10 billion, had significantly declined.[5]
    According to Forbes, Wang Jing had a net worth of $3.3 billion as of November 2015[1] that decreased to $ 905 million by October 2018.[2]
    ==================================================
    Dude !!!.... Its a Canal !!! Can you Dig it ??

  14. #14
    Para aquí para acá Jonh's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    His jing really got wanged!

  15. #15
    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonh View Post
    His jing really got wanged!
    Buddy can ya spare a square?
    ==================================================
    Dude !!!.... Its a Canal !!! Can you Dig it ??

  16. #16

    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by Daddy-YO View Post
    In Managua to have a tooth capped, I visited TransNica, while the sculptured, ceramic piece sintered in the oven, to see if I could leave for CR that day. After the dentist glued it in place for the final time, I rushed & caught the last bus, 1:00pm, with 15 min to spare. $50 round trip Managua<=>San Jose; cost the same tho I only went to Liberia, CR. By 3:40 we were at the border. Exiting Nicaragua cost me $4 (132 cords) using the bus’ helper. The CR side was a quick walk thru (having my exit ticket). I hit their ATM for 20k colones - I thought I’d get a few bills, but nope, just one cartoonish-looking thing - cost me just under $33. Thru Liberia at 6:00 the bus left me and a surfer out on the highway a mile out of town in the dark. Apparently TransNica has no legal rights to stop in town. Fortunately the driver had phoned a ‘taxi’ friend (a red car, but not a taxi) who arrived behind the bus. He charged 1000 colones to take me to Hotel Boyeros but it was full & fully booked for the next nite. The driver couldn’t make change for the 20k, and so he took me to another place, Hotel Siesta - a nice enough place, clean with A/C, TV, wifi, hot water shower, pool, breakfast, full bed for 25k ($41) - and charged me 2000, which he had change for.

    Tho the wifi was spotty, the Siesta hotel was pleasant enough that I opted for another nite there. A new, sweet, good-looking receptionist charged me 25,000, but said my credit card was rejected. I told her it’s good, try again. No problem. My bank later informed me that they refused to pay the earlier $25,000 (US dollars) charge. Colones can be a pain in the ass. There I met a retired Canadian living in Granada with a young babe and her daughter and we pal’d around, shooting the shit over meals & beers. The Toro Negro just past the central park had excellent buffalo steaks.

    My return ticket was open. TransNica gave me a number in CR to call to make a reservation. After a day in Liberia I decided to go back. So I called & called on day 2 - no one ever answered. Looking on their FB page it instructed me to send a message to their WhatsApp number with a foto of the ticket and one of my passport data page. Which I did. Without a response an hour later I phoned Managua and they set me up directly. Their last bus out of San Jose left there at 9am. I estimated it’d get to Liberia 1:00 to 1:30. Managua told me noon . . . and to be there early. An hour later their WhatsApp replied: 12:30, be early. The bus stop is across from the Taco Bell, under the overpass. I got there at 11, had a chicken chalupa and several self-served refills of ice tea in TB’s A/C’d box. Outside grease was in the air: McD’s and Bugger King sat on the other two corners of this intersection, KFC half a block away. From what I thought was McD’s PA system I heard two songs on continuous loop: the Police’s “I’ll be watching you” and “I want to get away. I want to fly . . . yeah, yeah, yeah.” Then I realized it was this gringo couple that jumped in front of traffic when the light changed red. The gal, with thick glasses and short shorts, sang with a microphone (bluetoothed to speakers?), while he, too tall, strummed a guitar that I don’t believe any could hear. Then they’d pass with straw hats in hands by car windows mostly closed and scramble back to the shade of the overpass when the light turned green, Traffic was pretty heavy.

    My bus arrived at 1:16. We were at the border in an hour and left by 3:30. I didn’t give the assistant who collect passports (& money) mine. He said it’d cost $22 (CR + Nica). The CR foreigner exit fee cost me $8 tho the receipt & customs guy said $7 (not sure who was skimming). At least I was able to dump the last of my colones here. Entering Nicaragua cost $10 (Inst. Nica Turism) + $2 (Min de Gob). US dollars. They would/could not accept Cordovas. I said, “But this is Nicaraguan money.” Silence. Nonetheless, mission accomplished - got another 90 day visa. And none of this HO-border nonsense about filing a 7-day advance notice of crossing. I may have saved a buck or two going thru customs on my own, but it really wasn’t worth it. Tho the two lines were short when I arrived, the agents took forever with some people. When a new line opened I passed thru.

    They have really beefed up the wall around the Nica side (higher reinforced cement block and rolls of new razor wire) plus there’s extensive construction of modern office buildings going on. It’s a stark contrast to the shade tree filled CR side. It’s a barren, dusty, dry, sun-bleached expanse - like an unwelcome mat.

    The comfort & speed of an A/C’d luxury bus was nice. The A/C was just right - I didn’t need to bring a jacket. (Years ago I froze on a TicaBus.) On both legs of my journey the TransNica bus was only a third full, if that. Everybody got two seats with enough left to move to for an interesting movie. Seats leaning well back made for easy napping. I only spent two days, but CR is expensive. One can be philosophical about it: two days of relaxing diversion. But strictly looking at the bottom line, Migracion Central in Managua would have only cost me 1500 cords, under $50. Being older and married to a Nica for 12 years, I seemed to have lost my sense of adventure. Not that I didn’t enjoy my Liberian liberty.



    Following in the steps of the master,, with the taste of a buffalo steak in my mouth,, we left Nicaragua and drove to Liberia only to find the Toro Negro closed on Mondays. I've had buffalo burgers there,, never a steak. They have a nice pie de limon there too,, tart,, like KeyWest,, would never sell in Nicaragua.

    Both crossings were easy,, probably two hours both,, with waiting for a the car permiso in CR taking up a half hour of that. It's always longer with a vehicle,, but everyone was really nice. I reunited with an old friend,, El Conejo, so called because he runs everywhere. I gave him ten bucks for old times sake,, the process is so familiar I could do it blindfolded.

    Unbelievable construction at the border on the Nica side,, what they are planning, I have no clue. The Conejo didn't know either. It's still screwed up,, you have to fight a line of semi's to get to the liviano parking lot,, as do the buses,,

    We stayed in Granada last night,, Hotel Granada,, and like the swallows to Capistrano,, the tourists are coming back to Granada. We saw quite a few gringos,, and not cruise ship passengers. A French couple. Hotel Granada only had four guests, including us, and we got there at ten PM. One guy running the whole place,, first room he opened was not made up,, second,, I had to go back and get a bar of soap.

    Gringos at Peñas Blancas,, I approached one woman with a babe at her breast,, off the Tica bus "are you just passing through Nicaragua, or visiting?"
    "Visiting"

    If anyone is familiar with the Hotel Granada,, you know how enormous it is. The have a HUGE salt water pool,, salado, but not salty as the ocean. The water is crystal clear. The place is being well kept. The included breakfast was good, and included unasked for coffee refills. There are much better prices in Granada,, but we were tired, and they have parking. As it was,, the one guy running the whole place sleeps by the door, and said,, " park in front,, I'll hear anyone who comes close to your truck"
    So, we did.

  17. #17
    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Speaking of cel phones, I am no a fan but in the last coiple years I see they are a virtual necessity for travel, like seeing who is closed on Mondays, etc.

    My latest adventure in the race to the bottom was on a budget airline that does not print boarding passes. When traveling a printer is not always available and you need the boarding pass at least twice, once at security and once at boarding. Fortunately, I saw this on their webpage and downloaded to my notebook which awkwardly got me through. the hard part with traveling thru multiple countries is have phone and access to wifi everywhere. Movistar has automatic roaming to Mex, EEUU, but not CR. We paid for a temporary package for Guate before leaving town.

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


  18. #18

    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Quote Originally Posted by el duende grande View Post
    Speaking of cel phones, I am no a fan but in the last coiple years I see they are a virtual necessity for travel, like seeing who is closed on Mondays, etc.

    My latest adventure in the race to the bottom was on a budget airline that does not print boarding passes. When traveling a printer is not always available and you need the boarding pass at least twice, once at security and once at boarding. Fortunately, I saw this on their webpage and downloaded to my notebook which awkwardly got me through. the hard part with traveling thru multiple countries is have phone and access to wifi everywhere. Movistar has automatic roaming to Mex, EEUU, but not CR. We paid for a temporary package for Guate before leaving town.


    We found the same thing.
    Our MoviStar doesn't work in CR,, real PIA as you depend so heavily on Google Maps to find things.
    I'm at the McDonalds, almost like being in the US, free drink refills, help yourself to ketchup and napkins,, fast WiFi, very clean,, I had a quarter pounder last night, and a egg McMuffin this morning. Food tastes identical t US.
    The Whoppers at Burger King in Esteli were always a little off in flavor, like the meat was old.
    I did like the soft serve cones.
    I realize that I'm not in Nicaragua for the McDonalds,, but the point I'm making is, the Ticos pay attention to the details.
    Nicaragua has always been,, it's good enough

    Prices in Playa Coco are up 30% in a couple of years, but this IS the season. It's beautiful here.
    Laura's B&B used to be $45, now she wants $60. And she filled up before we could get there.

    We decided to do a quick turn and will wind up at SJdS for the next two nights,, revisit some old haunts,,
    I still will get my Buffalo Burger,, or steak at Toro Negro, and a piece of Pie de Limon.

    I have a meeting at INTUR on Thursday to submit my package.
    My fixer/translator Arielka, and the lawyer, have been hard at work, and in communication with INTUR.
    Neither is leaving anything to chance.

    I have to come up with three references,, and I still have to do the essay,,

    "Why In Hell Would You (or anyone) Want To Move to Nicaragua???"

    I'm drawing on my Creative Writing classes in college,, if I get stuck,, I"ll PM Walking Man to polish the fantasy.

    One can't help but compare Liberia to Esteli. Too many cars, but the roads are easily navigable.
    Traffic moves well,, no one honks incessantly.

    Parking is an issue, but not an impossible one.
    I haven't seen any of that double parking that is so common in Esteli, and no one parks with their butts sticking out in the line of traffic.
    The noise level is a fraction of Esteli,, as is the level of dust.


    Pavement, not stones, a level of prosperity very similar to US. It's not shabby, nor or the people.
    CR has gone First World,, and Nicaragua is heading in the opposite direction.

    Liberia has exploded since I spent quite a bit of time here four years ago.
    The airport probably helped, as did a re-focus of the tourists to Guanacaste beaches, National Parks, and resorts like the Rio Azul
    They have their own volcano, the Rincon de la Vieja,, and the drive up the sides of the volcano is peaceful and beautiful. Pastoral.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    Well, back in the fatherland , or motherland,, depending on who you think is running the show.

    Easy trip back, lots of " welcome! " and attempts to pronounce my name. They should rotate this crew to El Edpino. Quite a few gringos. Not like before.

    The $32 hotel on the beach in SJdS enticed us back, CR was expensive. Hotel we're staying at bought Gato Negro's coffee roaster. Sad, but life goes on.

    They had that definitive time in Nicaragua's history,, when it looked like Nicaragua might get its shit together.

    I'm not complaining, two margaritas, two Toñas, service added, $6. I like the new normal and the gallo pinto economy


    Maybe THIS is Nicaragua's golden age.

    Tourists will definitely for come for $1 beers and 2x1 margaritas.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  20. #20

    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    So,, a little more info on San Juan.

    I met Dimitri, a Ukranian who bought La Estrella in Sep of 2018, refurbed it. It's the last Roof Dog that Kelvin Marshall reported in his Del Sur News. I emailed Kelvin,, so far, no response.

    Dimitri was already in Nicaragua, exporting coffee to Europe. It's an extraordinary location, and his price points keep the place full. It's more hostel than hotel, with communal bathrooms. Still, his last room today was $24 and it vanished as I was reviewing the booking.com listing.

    Kelly Ann Thomas (according to Dimitri) is developing her dream,, Harmonia, somewhere close to CR. Dimitri didn't know what happened to Rob. Kelly Ann is supposedly writing a book about the Gato Negro years.

    It's all a little sad. Like a woman you live with many years,, who one day just . . .leaves.

    It's a perfect time to visit SJdS. We walked into Buen Gusto and took the best table in the house ,, and watched the sun set. I've been here when you couldn't get into the place at sunset.

    I'd stay a couple more days but I have my appointment at INTUR tomorrow. I got a haircut,, C$120,, only C$50 in Condega. Don't want to show looking like Phil.

  21. #21
    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Renewing my tourist visa

    I was told that Kelvin is in hard personal times. He may not want to be contacted.

    I seen the Elusive Juano fill up at the SJDS station while we were waiting in line for a pump - Was going to say Hi but doubt he would care.

    We were in Gato Negro in 2012 or 2013 - To hipster for me and it was something like $4 for a cup of coffee...
    ==================================================
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