December 19, 2013: Day 6 in Nicaragua by Helen Packer & Lindsay Mannion

Posted by Lauren Rochholz on Saturday, December 21, 2013 at 8:13 PM PST



The authors of today’s post is Helen Packer, a Junior Humanities for Leadership and Creative Writing major, and Lindsay Mannion, a Senior Humanities for Teaching and Spanish major.  Each day is written by a different member of the SU community making the PWOB trip to Nicaragua.

Today was our first tourist day and a chance to explore some of the cities close to NPH. On our list: el Volcan Masaya, el Mercado Masaya, la Laguna de Apoyo, and Granada. At 8:30 fourteen of us piled into a little white van.

Laguna de Apoyo provided the chance to check off a bucket list item we didn’t even realize was on our bucket list. Apparently, after thousands of years volcanos collapse and form lagoons. That meant that we were all swimming in an old volcano.

By the time we reached Laguna de Apoyo the van had started to feel like a real Nicaraguan bus. We were now holding sixteen people, after we picked up Audrey’s friend Fatima and her brother Freddie. Our van (nicknamed Vincent Van-Go) teetered down the steep incline to La Abuela, where we stopped for lunch and swimming.  La Abuela looked out right over the water and our sixteen person table sat right up against the dock, precariously close to the edge. After being packed tight into the van, everyone was excited to jump into the water.

The water was cool and refreshing in comparison to our sweaty days of work. We cooled off and laughed about the fact that we were swimming in an old volcano.

In the second part of the day we drove down to Granada and took a boat tour around Lake Nicaragua. The lake contains a lot of tiny islands, mostly filled with private houses. On one tiny island, which was about the length of our small tour boat, we met a family of monkeys and became better friends than we were intending to! The mama monkey, Lucy, hopped aboard our boat, prancing up and down the aisle in search of food. She jumped up on to Fatima’s lap and climbed from seat to seat, jumping on people’s shoulders. Our guide gave Lucy some crackers to snack on and she wiped her hands on Helen’s shoulder. Helen wasn’t too happy about that. Lucy posed for some selfies with Sam.  When it was finally time to go, she seemed hesitant to leave the boat.

We finished the day with a several-hour dinner in Granada. After all the days of hard work, it was nice to have a day off, even if it was packed with activities.