Thursday, August 10, 2017

Letters From Nicaragua: Part 25 - Is The First World Preferable?

We were leaving. My board was somewhere back in Popoyo. It was probably the best board I'd had, yet I knew I could always get another. That is something you think hard about in Nicaragua, that no matter what happens, you can usually fix it with money, if you are somebody that has the ways and means. Most of the people that live there do not. Even when we got back to the Best Western Mercedes Hotel by the airport, I was thinking about where the people that work at the hotel live. However, it was bothering me a little bit less than it did two weeks ago, and that concerned me.

We had to get up so early the next morning, that it was actually still dark in Managua, a place where I had yet to see sunrise. Even me, the early riser, was getting used to experiencing full daylight at 5am in the morning. Many times I had seen yard workers hard at it while I walked to the beach, wiping the sleep out of my eyes. It was with a heavy heart that we left the Hotel Mercedes before they started breakfast. Our bellman scooped us up at 4:45am, and magically transported us across the street without upsetting any horsecarts or knocking any motorcyclists aside.
Without the paddleboard to transport through the airport, life was easy. Pam worked her lingo magic on the customs official, but he was bored with his day already, and after Pam's perfect Spanish phrase describing how she had no rocks or pottery, he replied, "Ok, thanks, you're good.".
Life was good, and there was even a coffee shop by our gate that had some of the best cafe con leche of our trip...for $2.00.
I could finally relax, no more worries about spending the rest of my life in a Nicaraguan prison for hitting someone's perro in the road, while my wife spent my retirement money with some young Romeo on a European river cruise.
We waited in the airport with a large group of missionaries that were heading back to the states and I saw many of them staring off in the distance at something.  Nicaragua was telling us that she had one last thing to show us before we left. How many places do you visit where you can watch an active volcano from the comfort of your seat at the airport...I must admit that my thoughts of getting home in one piece were a little bit unsettled by this sight until I heard from one of the vendors that this is a normal every day view, not some catastrophe unfolding before my eyes.

we finally got on the plane after a security person decided that I looked shady and patted me and my stuff down thoroughly. I actually felt pretty good that somebody still felt like I was worth keeping an eye on.
As we cruised over the deep blue ocean, thoughts of regular life drifted dreamily through my mind. We were going back to normal, where I knew the language, I knew where to get food and drink, and most places I would travel to didn't need four wheel drive. And to top all of that off, I would have a clean car again. Something that might stay clean for more than a day.
Yes, I was a happy boy right then, heading into Miami for a connecting flight without a care. It is a very good thing that we do not know what is ahead in life.....

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