Tuesday, 30 August 2011


No creeo que hay solo tres semanas mas en Nicaragua!!!
I can't believe that I have only 3 weeks left in Nicaragua. Then it's off to Edmonton. I've missed my computer for sure...and libraries and movie theatres and malls and all the other haunts I frequent in other cities.

Well I haven't talked about the society here so I will do it now.

This is only my conclusions from the very little I have observed about the country.
There's shocking teenage pregnancies in the USA, and then there are normal teenage pregnancies here. Abortion is illegal here and people have kids at 16, 17, 18...this can go both ways: the event can make people more mature or less.

Many families have one or more parents (usually the dad) working in the USA. The Spanish-speaking cities of Miami and Los Angeles are popular for Nicaraguan immigrants.

Some call it a developing country but from what I experienced life is adapted to the needs of each citizen, although I can say for the whole world that things can always be better. The main difference between here and Canada is that schools, backpacks, daycares, museums and natural parks are sponsored by non-governmental organizations or whole countries such as Luxembourg and Canada...

Monday, 29 August 2011

The Smell of Cities

I've only visited 4 cities long enough to get a definite smell of them. I think it's only after 2 months here that I've become used to Estelí's smell that when I go away I can notice it.

Toronto: has no smell. Or maybe I just grew up with it so I don't notice it.
Hong Kong smells like sewers.
Reykjavík smells like sulfur.
Estelí smells like tobacco.

Mmmm...yummy permeating nose odours...

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Es un secreto

Ok. Yo voy a tratar de escribir alguno de le post en español...

Cuando yo voy a comprar timbres, yo fuie a el correo pero ellos dije que no hay. Yo fuie a un hotel pues pero no m'entiende. Pues I gave up. But then yo vi una libreria con a sign 'se vende timbres' so I went in. But then the people said that there are no stamps anywhere in Esteli because they've run out and none have shipped in from Managua (the capital city) yet. So I've been trying to send mail to people but since there are no stamps I can't really do anything.

Más cosas unicos en Nicaragua: I'm used to taking off shoes than wearing special house shoes, or slippers, in the house, but here they wear their outdoor shoes indoors...and if you take off your shoes they believe you will get sick. So there is constant sweeping and mopping of the floors indoors.

Cuando yo pregunte a los niños a la escuela que ellos comen para desayuno, ellos contestaste pan y café. Coffee?! Kids drink cups of coffee for breakfast?! But then someone explained to me that the coffee I get in Canada and other parts of the world is spiked with caffeine and here it's natural and you won't get a high and then a crash and it's 'safe' for kids. Right after I heard that I started drinking copious amounts of coffee without caring.
One more things: instead of flushing toilet paper down the toilet along with the water (and the waste), people put the papel hygenica in baskets. It's kind of gross but I guess it doesn't clog up the sewers?

I'm waiting to see what the Nicaraguans will think of it when they get to Canada and they have to take their shoes off in the house and they wipe up in the bathroom then look around and see no wastebasket for them to put the toilet paper in.

Dos cosas que yo comenzaste haciendo en Nicaragua son: ver CSI y Criminal Minds, y jugar cartes. I never used to play cards willingly before and now I can. And I knew about those detective shows but I never bothered watching them and now I do. Cool.

I will leave you with a song I like that is popular right now by Puerto Rican Plan B

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Mira, Mentira, Callate

So the words I hear most often on the street are:
Mira - look!
Mentira! - It's a lie!
and Callate - Shut up!

Life is good.

Football Again

So there's an Estelí football team but they aren't big enough in the football world to have the town go crazy for them. Instead, there's a rivalary in the town between Real Madrid and Barcelona. People go around sporting Messi shirts. I work with to Nicaraguans at the school, one who is a Real Madrid fan and another who is a Barcelona fan. During the breaks it's funny to see them go back and forth, one taunting the other today since Barcelona won the last game of the season yesterday.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Es un secreto

soooo Toronto won the Toronto-Esteli match. I've changed counterparts and I have moved houses. I lost all my photos until the ones for August 1.

Something I have learned: how to squish chinche bugs with my shower shoes!
I have to have good timing when it comes to taking showers. The morning is too cold and I'm too tired for showers. At night there may or may not be water available in the city. In the afternoon when I come back is perfect, but by that time there may or may not be water.

One evening I was coming out of the office. It faces some fields of grass. I heard this weird 80's videogame-like sounds coming from the grass. It freaked me out. Much later, I learn from my counterpart that their female toads (mujeres de sapos) that make those noises.

Another thing. Nicaraguans are very hospitable when it comes to making sure you have a seat. Whenever I go anywhere (except for on the bus), they pull out a plastic chair and tell me to sit if they see me standing. And a lot of the homes have the same chairs. It's made of a cherry-wooden frame with plastic wickerwork and I imagine sometime in the 80's a store had a huge sale and the whole town bought them all.