Travel Talk

Taking Care of Business in Leon, Nicaragua

Woke up to another melt up and no I’m not talking about some ham and cheese melt. Needed internet so caught a chicken bus at 7am and it was standing room only, great. The goal was to get an internet stick aka a 3g modem so I could turn this secluded / deserted beach paradise into a stronghold of all things SHABL. The bus was very hot and I was sweaty, that set the tone for the rest of the day…

Met a long haired gent and we talked the whole way, he is renting a crib here for $2k a month, sounded steep but whatever. He told me he had a promotion on his internet stick and that I *HAVE* to make sure it works before I leave or else. Also warned me it would take hours, sure I thought… Stopped by an old guest house and checked on my ham and cheese melt and almost had a heart attack, off to the Clara store across form the Cathedral of the Assumption.

Hit it up and in NO TIME I was getting a modem, they were very friendly and even gave me a deal that included the modem and unlimited usage for 30 days at a grand total of $25, what!? I jumped on it and in 25 minutes or so I was ready to leave, 2 hours, no way! Then the modem didn’t work, we tried everything and I felt like a kid in church aka insanely bored. It didn’t work, she tried it on hers and it worked. They told me “no refunds” and I was out on the streets. Normally I’d be annoyed but then realized small people have big problems.

Went to some friends and tried it, didn’t work, roll back after eating some horrible oranges. Believe the whole town is inundated with sub-par oranges, disgusting. She tried it on another computer and sure enough, didn’t work. Then a 2.5 hour refund / card swap began it was mind numbing. It worked and saw the melt up was giving those indulging cholesterol and smiled. Before I left I said this is 30 days right, they said “no, 15”. At that point I said, I beg your pardon in the way all sophisticated gentleman reply to things that make no sense. A minute later she was writing on receipt that it is valid for 30 days, gets the promotion and signed it, indude (sic).

Rolled out and hit up my main lady for lunch. You know that joint that always has chicken, cops hanging out and something. I LOVE that place and the lady would have a special spot in my sweet tooth if I had one. Went to my gym that costs $8.75 a month aka the same price as my trip to the dentist. Did a shoulder workout in 40 degree heat while hanging out with my friend from Colon, Panama. He’s always there and we make small talk, developing a small network.

If you have anything to really worry about around here it’s the traffic, look both ways twice and say a prayer. Go to Radioshack, yes there is a Radioshack and I bought a laptop lock for $15. It’s not that I don’t trust everyone, just most people. Not having a laptop lock on the road is like owning a car without insurance aka stupid. Always get the combo ones, you’ll lose your keys before your mind I hope. The trick with the combo is you have to rotate the one number closest to lock first or it appears stuck. Remember this, insurance is a horrendous waste of cash until it’s not.

Jump on the bus home, looks like I just missed the last one. I sit there sweating until I arrive home. Now I have a laptop lock and a 3G modem so I can get down to business. Busy busy day in Leon, will probably roll in 2-3 times a week for something to do, hit the gym and add some variety to my diet. This place has all the makings of a strong hold of beach living, productivity, fitness and all else that is desirable in a daily routine.

If you love the lifestyle you have in North America, don’t even think of moving here. Small everyday things can require a leap of faith and pole vault into the unknown. That said, if you find life back home annoyingly vanilla you’ll see these inconveniences as small hurdles. Remember how I told you this Spanish gent with a broken leg was making dinner, behold. All it was missing was saffron but supposedly the local saffron is sub par. Not bad for a half a 5 on it, yes?

Tomorrow, we’ll discuss the boom and bust of this area over tang, perhaps.

Tips hat,

P.S: The bus ONLY plays old school cheesy music, enjoy…

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