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TED worthy

16 December 2008 · 2 Comments

This past weekend, I think I finally met a person truly worthy of giving a talk at the TED conference.  Paulette Goudge is an amazing person that is really living out her ideals.  In a nutshell, she originally arrived in Nicaragua in the 1980´s during the revolution. Afterward, she adopted a war child, moved back to England, sold all of her belongings, and moved back to Nicaragua.  She has built an eco-hotel and Spanish school.  The eco-hotel is pretty cool – runs on solar energy (put in by the group we will be working with in a few weeks), recycles her water, makes meals using products from the garden, and is fairly self-sufficient.  She has also taken in many animals off the street, started a reforestation program, and employs only locals.  My understanding is that she is trying to start a new school for the children of the small town.  She has an amazing story and I am glad I was able to meet her.

The past week has been filled with many different events and travel.  On Wednesday, we saw Daniel Ortega (president of Nicaragua) give a talk – sort of interesting, but fairly anti-climatic for me.  Many people traveled in from all over the region to watch the talk, but nobody seemed to be really interested – lots of talking, no clapping, and many people actually walked out before the end of his talk (including me).  I was expecting a much different reaction from the people and that is what I was interested in experiencing.  My Spanish is not good enough to really understand what he was talking about.

We also traveled to Masaya, located north of Granada with the Spanish school.  It was pretty interesting – lots of arts and crafts (the town is famous for it), a local lunch, visiting the Masaya volcano (which is active).  On the weekend, we traveled back to the Masaya area and stayed at the eco-hotel – mostly to get away from the larger towns and the noise (we were successful with the larger town part, but not the noise).  On Saturday night, we did a night tour of the Masaya volcano – we were able to faintly see the glow of the magma.  We were a bit unlucky in that the gasses were pretty strong and the wind was blowing the wrong direction.  On Sunday, we took a long walk around the hills of Masaya.  It was also interesting – we saw some truly truly poor people.  The amount of trash on the streets is also incredible to witness – at times unbelievable, even after walking through it.

This weekend, we are headed off to Costa Rica as our visas expire on Saturday.  We will be there for at least 3 days, but the itinerary is far from set.  We are hoping to make it to Corn Island for Christmas and/or New Years (a small island in the Caribbean Sea), but the plane tickets have not been bought yet (we actually have not started looking for them).  This week also marks the end of our first phase of this journey – the completion of the Spanish school.

I will try to get a few more pictures posted tonight or tomorrow.  Now it is time for me to go to the beach.

Until that time…

Tags: Life · Nicaragua · Travel

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 kat // Dec 17, 2008 at 23:46

    nice post b.o.b.
    how is your spanish progressing? the good news is that you get to keep practicing while you’re down there.

  • 2 Thorsten // Dec 23, 2008 at 22:32

    Hey Bob! Nice pictures, we miss the sun, at moment Berlin is grey in grey, windy, wet and very coooool. I wish you a happy christmas, a very good time and start in the new year!