Thanks everyone for all your well wishes for our trip to Nicaragua. It truely was wonderful.
Managua is a bustling city of many contrast. 90% of the money goes to 10% of the population. There really is no middle class. We saw much poverty, but not quite to the extreme as in Haiti. The roads are very poor and there is much competition between the trucks, scooters, bicycles, donkey or ox carts and foot traffic.
Stop Signs are merely a suggestion! No one would know how to drive without his horn. The horn is used for greeting, warning, look out I'm coming through and maybe just because. I closed my eyes a lot when we were in town.
The country of Nicaragua will have elections on Nov. 5th. Many parties are in competition for votes, with billboards everywhere.
Politics, corruption, graft and many natural disasters such as volcano eruptions, earthquakes and hurricanes have really weakened this country. There is much fear of violence and vigilante type of control and all that goes along with a dictatorship. The fate of Nicaragua lies in the hands of the voters.
Nothing gets repaired or updated. Since the tragic earthquake in the late 80's, the city of Managua has had no downtown or Civic Center. The entire downtown area was destroyed along with much loss of life. Little has been done to fix things. People are struggling and they told us they felt forgotten and had little self worth. They were amazed that we would come to visit them without any ulterior motives.
After spending several days in Managua, our team left for Niquienohomo. The city is about 1 hour south of Managua and is smaller than its name. It actually felt like a village. Many of the families are in the floral or nursery business or they make furniture from a beautiful hardwood that grows locally. Poverty wasn't as evident as in Managua.
OUR ADVENTURE BEGINS
For the next week our team lived in private homes. My husband and I lived with a lovely couple who spoke only a few words of English. We speak only a few words of Spanish....
Believe me, our dictionary got quite a workout. There was a whole lot of laughter and silliness as we pantomined, drew pictures and FRACTURED the language.
Over the next few days I will share a few pictures from our trip. The humidity caused a few problems with my camera. Consequently, my travelogue has more "snapshots" than quality photos.
I enjoy showing these memories with you because the people and places have impacted my life.