“This is Nicaragua…”

How was my (PK) week while Ben was in Haiti? Mid week we had an extra HUGE downpour of a rainstorm. Loud thunder, lightning bolts, lots of water… I was sitting in the sala enjoying the mad waterfall created from our one central roof spout – splashing all over the floors and beyond.

During that rainstorm a lightning bolt hit Granada’s main city generator. Electricity went off right away and stayed off till midday the next day and ever since has been intermittent.

I come home after yoga to a pitch black house, navigating my way to find the candles and matches that have not been used in a while. How do people react to this lack of city power? No one blinks….no one reacts at all… after all “this is Nicaragua.”

Going out for dinner on the main street with friends means that during a meal outside on the main drag, the power goes off and stays off for an hour, comes back on, goes off. We navigate our way in the dark trying to avoid pot holes in the streets as the three of us make our way to a friend’s house. We enjoy the city in the dark, as people emerge onto the street from their darker yet houses and there is a quiet that pervades the city… all music stops, firecrackers cease to go off and Granada feels like a different place. Using the light from a cell phone we make our way cautiously up narrow stairs and onto a huge roof top. A view of the church, a breeze and night stars make for a perfect spot to spend some time.

I should mention that today is day three that the whole city has also had no water. Just a trickle.. enough to wash a dish or two and to flush the toilet. This is where having a pool does come in handy.

My neighbor has a big pot on her wall and is collecting rain fall – of course it would make perfect sense for all of us to be doing this on a larger scale. We have lots of rain, but we have no city water. I try to imagine what it would be like in a US city if there was intermittent electricity and no water for three days.. but here no one misses a beat.. “this is Nicaragua.”

Another dimension of this is that when I go to the bank, as I get to the front after waiting in line, all the computers go down. No idea when they will be back up maybe tomorrow. No one is talking about the fact that there is no electricity, no water.. everyone accepts it. Gringos and locals alike. As I write this, the water has just come back on after a 3 day hiatus. (Yay!)

One interesting other anecdote to mention… I come home from buying some fruit one day and go to check on my brood of kittens, open the bathroom door and almost jump out of my skin when I see a HUGE enormous tortoise in the shower!

There is only one tortoise that I know of that lives in Granada, and it lives across the road at PURE.

I call my friend Warren and leave a message ” ahh, do you know where Snoopy is? cos there is a huge ass tortoise in my shower. I have no idea how it got here, what it is doing here, but I don’t know of any other tortoises, so it must be Snoopy. Um, can you please come and get him?”

I am dumbfounded by the fact that there is no note, no phonecall.. So how did he get to be in my shower?

When Pedro comes home with the dogs I ask him if by any chance he knows how the tortoise happens to be here..

“Ah yes he says casually, Warren asked me to put it in your house while they fumigate across the road, so I thought the shower was the best place for him”

And as though he does it every day Pedro lifts this huge 50lb or so reptile and I watch him as he walks across the road holding Snoopy who now has his neck and limbs stretched out and wiggling, in front of him.

Oh yes, and I did have an offer by a tall, dark and handsome 30-something Spaniard to go to Buenos Aires with him next week.
Too bad.. I already have a ticket for Colombia!

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