Monday, June 17, 2013

English SAD - June 16, 2013

happy with our free beer
This has been a weekend of firsts.....

After what seemed like endless days of rain, rain and more rain we were happy to get on the bus Friday at 5 am (and yes, it was raining!) to head to
Managua for our second SAD here in Nicaragua. The SAD was held on Sunday, June 16, 2013 but we had to be in town a day early to help clean the assembly hall. After a lot of indecision, we left Pancho home alone with lots of seeds, bananas and water and every time we heard some birds I wondered how he was making out.

We arrived in Managua about 5:30 pm and were grateful to be picked up by our host for the weekend - our blogger buddies Charley and Rachel in Nicaragua. They were already playing host to some friends of theirs from Britain, Madalyne Eddie and her brother Blake Eddie. They had just spent 2 months in the Dominican Republic as needgreaters and are spending a month here with Charley and Rachel to finish their 3 month needgreater vacation. After a delicious dinner of beef and chicken tacos we were exhausted and hit the bed at 9 pm so that we could be up early to head to the Assembly Hall for cleaning the next morning.

Like the good sports they are, Madalyne and Blake offered to come and help scrub toilets and wash floors and we arrived at the hall by 8 am - the time we were told cleaning was to begin. We should have known better - we were the first to arrive and the arrangement for cleaning wasn't actually until 9 am. There are some advantages to arriving early because we weren't assigned toilet duty - well, not initially. We really enjoyed seeing all our friends from León who arrived to clean as well as those we know from Managua. While I was taking a "short" break - sitting in the auditorium - the chairs started to rattle and I thought that Pat must have come up behind us and was shaking the chairs. NO - it was a 6.5 earthquake! It seemed to go on for minutes, though I'm sure it was only about 30 seconds. There was no damage and everyone seemed to take it in stride. We heard later that friends in León reported they felt it even stronger than we did. It was a long morning but we finally were finished by 1 pm and headed out for some lunch and to pick up supplies for lunches on Sunday. That evening we decided to check out a restaurant we had seen on the way to Charley and Rachel's - Flayers Hamburgers. The burgers were good - but the fun part was a group of 3 young ladies that delivered 6 free Victoria Classic beers to our table! When we were settling up the bill we were offered more beer to take home - so you can imagine the happy face Pat had when he heard the news.

Ashlee and Lily
Sunday was a fun day - the program was really enjoyable and it was wonderful to see even more of our friends from León. Little Lily isn't so little anymore but unfortunately she doesn't remember us. That's ok because she will get used to us again in August because we will be staying with her for a few days after the Pioneer School.

We enjoyed the interview that Bill Rose had with Todd and Lori Schlepper - we will miss them now that they have been assigned to the District Work and they won't likely be heading back to Pearl Lagoon any time soon.

After the SAD we had another first - we braved the wilds of the Managua bus system and took 2 buses from the Assembly Hall all the way across town to the Costa Caribe Bus Terminal.  You can bet we didn't try this on our own. We made the journey with the Blake family and although we got squished on the first bus we didn't have any trouble, not even when we had to negotiate the Huembles market to find our second bus.

Interview with Todd and Lori


it was Tyrece's first SAD-doesn't he look happy?
the large truck from El Rama to Kukra Hill
 The bus from Managua left right on time - 9 pm and we arrived in El Rama shortly before 3 am. Rather than take the pangas (we can't justify the cost when the bus is so cheap) we took the 4 am "truck" that was heading to Kukra Hill. The truck was actually quite comfortable and roomy and reminded us of the camionettas we used to ride in León. The plan was that we would arrive in Kukra Hill in time to get the 10 am bus to Pearl Lagoon. Of course - not everything goes according to your plans. When we reached Kukra Hill we found out that there wasn't going to be a 10 am bus because it was broken down. The upside was a truck was leaving right away and there was room in it for all of us. Just as we were heading along what is called the savanna (not too far from home) the truck got a flat tire. Thankfully he had a spare because I wasn't thrilled at the prospect of walking the rest of the way.

waiting for the tire to be fixed

Well, we are happy to report that we did finally make it home at 10:30 - very tired and relieved that Pancho survived his 3 days on his own. He must have cleaned up very well because there were no signs of a party!