Today I, Sean Goldring, had the privilege to lead the Global Glimpse group on our second day regarding global business. Luckily we had a nice leisurely wake up time of seven-thirty which my family members will know I appreciated greatly, even if I didn’t enforce it as well as I should have. We began the day with an artisan breakfast at La Casita, a cottage farming style restaurant/farm/garden run by a Scotsman named David Thompson who’s been living in Nicaragua for the last thirty years. All of their ingredients are homegrown and they limit their use of pesticides to only three brands used to fight woodcutter ants which are a serious threat to many of the native plants on their land. They try to be as organic as possible but they don’t like the idea of pushing it in any ones faces and believe that their business practice is primarily a way of life and there’s no effective purism in any lifestyle so they try to be flexible and limit their use of harmful chemicals David put it as: “Beating your head against a brick wall just to prove a point.”
Then we went with our new pal Jason to the Santiago cigar factory to see the Tobacco curing process and learn about the importance of Tobacco regarding Esteli’s economy. According to Jason, sixty-five percent of Nicaraguans living in Esteli have some connection to tobacco companies whether by working there or family members that work there. It’s laborious to spend a whole day making cigars and workers are paid per-cigar rather than per-hour. As Jason said at the end of the tour to put things in perspective: “If you ever smoke a cigar remember that hundreds of other hands have passed over it over the course of almost two years of hard labor.” It was a pretty sweet day and we finished it off with forty minutes of free time where we made calls and bought doughnuts. I called Maya Rowe and got a doughnut with rainbow sprinkles so I’m in a pretty stellar mood, at the very end we had our nightly English class with the locals and I got to see my pal Hezar who is a real cool dude and has traveled all over central America.