Monday, October 1, 2012

León, Nicaragua - October 1, 2012

Believe it or not but blahhh days can happen even here. We woke up this morning and the sky was overcast - no problem, it usually clears up.... not today! I think we've had about 10 minutes of bright sunshine and that's it! I put the sheets out on the line by 9 am and at 1 pm they were still on the damp side. The temperature gauge (on the computer) indicated that it was 29⁰C but, it's felt chilly all day! How can that be???? Oh, yeah - we're in the winter season. 

Virgen de Mercedes - Leon, Nicaragua
The month of September is when León celebrates their "Fiesta Patronales". One way they do this is by carrying an image of the Virgen de Mercedes through the different barrios (we thought the celebration was for Mary). Last Monday was Barrio Guadalupe's turn.  When we woke up on Monday morning we noticed that many people were out decorating the fronts of their homes as well as doing an extra cleaning on their sidewalks. Everywhere looked spic and span! Through the early evening we noticed that more and more people were gathering outside our house. There were so many people selling everything you can imagine (to eat!). There was pizza, hot dogs, candy apples, quesillos - but no popcorn! For the kids people were selling little blow up toys as well as the colourful flashing lights like what they sell back home at special events. About 8 pm we could hear fireworks and we realized that as the "Virgen de Mercedes" was going through the barrio they would set off the fireworks as it passed. We saw some really interesting fireworks (they would be illegal in Canada) that when they exploded in the sky a little parachute with a light attached floated down to earth - they were really cool! The festivities finally ended about 10 pm only to be repeated in another barrio later in the week.
crowds following the procession

Jose Luis and his "Rice Stuffing"
We had a good week in service last week and ended up going to La Paz Centro twice. We found another young man who speaks really good English - he works at a nice Seafood Restaurant so it is convenient for calling back on him. We can enjoy a delicious lunch and have a short bible discussion with him if he isn't too busy.  When we called on Jose Luis on Friday he had a nice surprise for us - "Rice Stuffing". It was really tasty - the only thing is we had already eaten lunch at the Seafood Restaurant and we weren't hungry at all - but we made ourselves eat it so that we didn't offend him.

Next week we have the visit of our new Circuit Overseer and his wife - Todd and Lori Schlepper (not sure of the spelling). He is originally from Canada - I believe from the Toronto - but I'm not sure where Lori is from. We are hosting them for lunch so we will be able to get all the details. We're looking forward to the visit and the fact that we will be able to attend the Pioneer Meeting.

We are in the process of planning our next trip to Costa Rica - we have to go next month. This time we are going with another couple from our hall. We have found a nice 2 bedroom house in Playas del Coco that we hope to rent - it has a pool and is close to the beach. We will be able to save some money by making breakfast and lunch - well, dinner also if we have too!

Pictures from the week:

Pat giving a Sunday Public Talk

a well behaved duck on the bus to Leon, Nicaragua