Stand UP Nicaragua: Mombacho Volcano and Service Projects

Buenas dias from Granada, Nicaragua. Our last two days allowed us to bridge the gap between the far extremes of the Nicaragua travel spectrum, in more ways than one.

Wednesday was spent back at La Granadilla, and after lunch we bounced our way towards Mombacho Volcano. The canopy tour and a series of 7 zip-lines passed through swarms of howler monkeys, and a jungle hike around the lower of Mombacho’s two craters topped out at nearly 1,300 meters. Lakes, lagoons, and many of the countries 17 cloud-strewn volcano peaks beckoned in the distance. The vistas gave us a preview of what was to come next, both near and longer term.

July is smack in the middle of Nicaragua’s rainy season. The good news is two-fold. First, the skies open only for brief moments in time, and second, that the partly-cloudly forecasts allow for a respite from the sun. The bad news is that when it rains, it’s inevitable that a hard rains gonna fall. Such was the case

 

Thursday afternoon, in the midst of a heated battle on the Granadilla diamond. Top of the 5th (of a 5-inning game), BBYO up to bat, La Granadilla All-Stars in the field.. Two runners on, one out, BBYO down two runs, 5-3. Ethan settles into the batters box, Mombacho Volcano spewing dark clouds from its two craters beyond left centerfield. CRACK. Not the sound of the ball hitting the bat, but the roar of thunder followed by an almost instantaneous downpour. Total saturation time? 8 seconds.

Prior to the game, we continued our volunteering projects in La Granadilla, our home away from home (away from home) since our arrival. The brick oven is nearing completion, and the swing-set has taken on its new form, uncannily resembling the Jamaican flag (there are not a plethora of choices in terms of paint colors…). Though as always in developing countries, it was the village’s children that stole the show, and a small piece of the teens’ hearts. The progression of the day ran parallel to the tightening of bonds with the ninos, and though only a small handful in the group were able to practice their Spanish skills, non-verbal communication won the day – as did the La Granadilla All-Star team once the rain receded.

Dinner and a jaunt around Granada to finished off the week, and on to the village one last time in the morning to lay the final bricks and coat of paint.

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