Another Day in Granada

Another sound sleep. We might almost get used to this, however with the weekend looming those bad pop tunes will certainly stretch well into the wee hours of the morning. I didn’t beat the pool guy to the pool this morning, and the rain put a damper on any wishes i had for a morning plunge…so a few more minutes in bed before breakfast was the plan. The pool guy also was sprinkling in something I hadn’t seen before, so i figured it might be better for me to just wait rather than have this partial tan get bleached off my body.

Breakfast while watching the rain was peaceful. We were in no rush to run out and get wet, so waiting for these showers to pass was kind of nice. Today, three little goals. A haircut, an old train station, and a volcano visit.

We found the barberia across the street from the church tower we climbed yesterday. This place was simple, lots of chair and only a few heads of hair being cut. 100 cordoba for a haircut is what the guy told me yesterday, and 100 cordoba is what I paid the lady that managed the till. An older lady, that seemed to be more of a pimp than hired help. The hair cut was simple. Only. Few words required and 15 minutes later I walked out a few grams lighter, leaving a snowy trail of hair trimmings in my wake. Task one complete.

The rain was coming on strong. It was a pretty wet morning and flip flops as everyday footwear make perfect sense. If anything, we might be a little too trusting of our sidewalks at home and adding full coverage shoes to our feet make us a little less aware of where we step. Here we need to be watching for foot and man sized holes in the sidewalk, broken tiles, dog poop from the strays running everywhere, dangling power lines, and on a rainy day the super slippery tiles they decorate the sidewalk with. In wet flip flops we are super careful of where we step.

We made our way across town to the old train station. Rain, sun, and some traffic dodging through a less tourist traveled part of town. There were a few tourists ferried out this way in their horse drawn carriages. That really isn’t our style. Sure these guys only wanted $22USD for the carriage ride to a dozen different spots in the city, but all are walkable. Maybe our ignorance of what neighbourhoods we walk through might be a bit daunting, but a guide is something we will pay for when needed. We made it to the old train station and found that it is now a technical college. Young individuals were doing some metal work and welding off to one side out back while others in the train station were learning to cook. A guy that looked like security stood at the open gate while students passed through…and we walked right in. Not sure if we were allowed to be there, we started discreetly taking photos. Next, the security guy was suggesting we could get up on the train for some additional photos…and walk all through the little station to check out some old train cars. What a treat! Who needs ice cream when you can explore a bit of history?

Being as it was now lunchtime, we went to a place recommended by our Airbnb host when we were in Las Penitas. The Garden Cafe is tucked a little out of the way, and across the street from the second Irish Bar we found in town. This one also does karaoke on Wednesdays and guess what…today is of course Wednesday. We had a volcano trip to do though, so karaoke might have to wait. We lunched and filled our bellies with smoothies, mango lassi, and some not so interesting Nicaraguan food. We have tried a few things here that are local and they all seem to lack spice. A great thing about Canada is the fusion of flavours and variety. Our fruit might not be the best, but we can make damn tasty meals. These people don’t know how to make a good curry…in time though they will.

We ate too much. 3PM and we had to meet our driver. We needed a nap. All the blood had rushed to our bellies and curling up in the sunshine like the dogs on the sidewalk sounded like a better plan than visiting a nearby market before the volcano. Our driver arrived right on time, which was 25 minutes late. We picked up a nice Italian girl, also traveling alone, and we went of to the Masaya market. This was purely a tourist market, but what must have been 50-60 stalls all selling the same stuff, or mild variations of the stuff. It really made no sense as to why all of these vendors would have the same hammocks, beautiful wood bowls, gaudy fishing hats with Nicaragua embroidered across the front, intricate leather goods. Maybe it is a collective where they all share in the profits, but i highly doubt that as very little in the country seems that organized. After 20 minutes of browsing, and getting tired of saying No Gracias, we found an exit with a stand blending up milk with banana. Call it a snack break.

Off to the volcano. They do day entrance fees, and night entrance fees. $10USD a piece for the night trip and only small groups are allowed up at any given time. 15 minute visits to facilitate crowd control. Our driver got us to the market, to the gate, up the mountain, and back to Granada in one piece. He wasn’t much of a guide though. About 20 words came from his mouth the entire trip there and back. The glowing red mouth of the volcano spoke for itself, and having the Italian girl along in the car to tell us all about how nice the Corn Islands were made us think maybe we need to look at where we go next.

Being as this is our last night in Granada for a bit, we went back for some Asian noodle stir fry and cocktails. Our bellies very full and we are getting sleepy very fast. Let’s see what might be in store tomorrow. I am just hoping for a little more sun…but not too much of course