Friday, March 31, 2017

River Crossing

This is not your average route to school.  We were told about a shortcut over the river that the kids use to get to school.  We thought it would be cool to check it out....definitely not what we were expecting.  The access is behing this building, which is not the school as far as we can tell, but is a government building.  Unused for the moment. 

Friday, March 24, 2017

Nicaraguan Safety and Security

I am constantly being impressed with many different aspects of Nicaragua.

We have had many visitors in the last few days.  The first was the local police department jefe who came to say hello.  He was making the rounds and checking up on the community to see if everything was ok.  It occured to me that he was just trying to be nosy and then I wondered if we had paid our taxes.  (how quickly my mind can go to trouble)  However, this guy was truly nice and asked if we had any thefts, if we felt safe, and if there was anything to report.   We told him we had our pump stolen last year and recently we discovered we had some lumber missing.  He took notes and thanked us for the information.  And then he fines, no payments, and no problems.  Wow.  How cool is that!  I was so caught up with it all that I did not take any pictures.

Next we were visited by a crew from public health and safety. They spoke with everyone in our barrio and planned a tsunami drill for 11:00am.  Weirdly, the kids were so excited. They have experienced fire drills, tornado drills, school lock-down drills, but never a tsunami drill.

At 11:00am the sirens started blarring.  They are located on the access road to the beach and for all the open space that surrounds us, the alarm was loud.

Emergencias! Emergencias! Emergencias!
Alarma del Tsunami! Alarma del Tsunami!
Evacua a la seguridad! Evacua a la seguridad!

We all walked away from the beach like we were told and made it to the checkpoint in under seven minutes.  We were congratulated for following the rules and making it to higher ground in reasonable time.  Yay!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Painting Party

The painting has started!  Every step is so exciting, but this one adds the wow factor.
The building has been white since the very beginning.  We have become very comfortable with the white walls and the blue roof (although it is a very dusty roof and seeing the brilliant blue will not happen until the rainy season hits)

Here we are painting it all grey to seal the stucco finish and to provide the base coat for the colour.

Well, this is not the change we were expecting. Dull metal grey really changes the tone and atmosphere, making it feel like a military base.  

Hurry up with the green.

Ah, new spring green is my favourite.  Or, as the paint can illustrates, this is Manzana Verde.

So appetizing I could eat it!

We needed more colour.  The paint store we visited in Masachapa have all the colours painted on the walls so it is easy to choose your desired outcome.  We chose a brilliant blue for accent and a bold yellow for the upper story and the main walls.  Once painted, we looked around and realized we picked our colours based on some of our favourite things...El Fumador, a green towel, and the every so lovely coconut. Works for us.

 And here it is in all its splendor.  We are still in shock.  Not sure if it will stay this way, but for now we will leave it.  The roll down safety covers are in, the doors are hung, the window safety bars are installed and the house is now secure...and is looking good. 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Donde esta la Biblioteca?

"Donde Esta La Biblioteca? "

That is our family's secret theme song.  Ok, its now out.   It just so happens that it is the first line of a jaunty rhyming tune,  I would love to post the entire song, but my kids strongly abject due to the fact that iti is our family's SECRET theme song.  They have graciously allowed me to write the first two lines.

Donde esta la biblioteca?
Me llamo Evan la arana discoteca

That's all I am allowed to write, but my favourite line further into the tune is:

Buenas dias me gusta papas fritas.

Anyways, back to current time....
We found outselves in Granada visiting our wonderful friends Fabrizio and Jeffrey.  They bought an old Colonial house in the heart of the city and are restoring it to its full splendor, plus giving it a modern touch.  I just love buildings with internal courtyards and lots of vegetation.  It is so different from our normal north american style.
After our breakfast outing to the Garden Cafe - again a beautiful building with an interior courtyard, we happened upon the library.

Donde esta la biblioteca?

We all get excited to visit new libraries.  The possibilities are endless. The smell alone is worth it.

Kids had loads of fun looking for books up high on the shelves.


Coventec Walls


"It is not the beauty of a building you should look at; 
its the construction of the foundation that will stand the test of time"  
David Allen Coe

Considering this is not Canada we did not have to create a full 4' deep foundation wall. We only dug 16 inches deep. Ok, the 'Royal We' means our crew.

A grid of rebar was made and placed into the channel and wood forms were constructed.
 The concrete was then mixed by hand and poured by the 5 gallon bucket load.and left to set.  

Monday, February 20, 2017

Mombacho Volcano Zipline

The Mombacho Volcano is a destination in Nicaragua.  You can actually drive up the treacherously steep side of the volcano to the very top where you can explore the interpretive building - the Mombacho Reserve.  While there you can explore plenty of information about the volcano as well as maps, photos, models, and souvenirs. Plus you can set out on a walk through the mystical cloud forest and around one the volcano's four craters. 
But, halfway up to the top is a zipline-canopy tour.   We decided we must stop and explore.  The kids practically jumped out of the vehicle anyways so it was best we parked and all went together.  

Here we are with our gear on, ready to experience the thrills.  

Upside down was a favourite. 

But only for the kids.  JD did not think it would suit him.

March 2015

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

El Fumador - Part III

I love this truck.  El Fumador is a solid, fully capable, grumpy old friend.                                                                                                                                                                   Here is El Fumador assisting with the submerged pump in the well.                                                                                     When you a need a power supply Old Smokey can accommodate. 

However, for every favour asked, a return favour is often required.  Old Smokey had a flat and needed fixing.

February, 2015