Today was our second fun day and our second to last day here in Nicaragua! To start the fun off, we all had to wake up at five in the morning to board the bus by six. Once on the bus we made our three hour journey to the active Masaya Volcano, which is located right outside the city of Granada. Upon our arrival at the volcano, we first visited the Masaya Volcano museum that details all the historical volcanoes located in Nicaragua. It also features animals, and historical paintings. Next, we got back in the bus and took a trip up to the top of the volcano. Here we had a chance to take photos and roam around the volcano. There was no visible lava because of the massive fog cloud and the lighting of daytime.
After heading back down the volcano, we made our way back on the bus to the city of Granada. Once we arrived, we visited the Granada cathedral, a colonial landmark. We then took winding, steep stairs all the way up to the bell tower, where we could see views of the whole city. After going to the cathedral, we visited Cafe de las Sonrisas, a cafe that provides jobs to people with disabilities, specifically people who are deaf. They offer jobs making hammocks. Some of their hammocks are made with plastic bags to promote recycling, while others are made of wood and yarn. One of their hammocks made the Guinness Book of World Records for longest hammock. Some of us received a tour, while others sat in the hammocks and bought beverages. After leaving the cafe, we visited another cathedral, located right outside of the town square where people sold a myriad of artisan crafts. We then had a chance to walk around and purchase these crafts. Next, it was finally time for lunch, or should I say a trip back to America! We had lunch at Tip Top where we were all served delicious fried chicken, fries, bread, salad, and a drink; the vegetarian option was salad and fries.
After lunch we took a forty five minute drive to The Monkey Hut, a small lagoon located in Granada. There we had the opportunity to kayak, swim, lounge around on the beach, lounge in hammocks, or enjoy beverages at the bar. We were given free time to choose an activity; most did a little bit of everything. Many of us spent time jumping off of the dock into the warm water, or kayaking around the lagoon. After about two hours of free time, we went on our long ride back to Matagalpa. By the time we got back, it was dinner time.
At dinner, we had a surprise: our friends from the La Casa Cultural dance studio met us at Abya Yala for a dance party! We had a great time reuniting with them, dancing, and taking pictures. But eventually we had to say goodbye. After leaving our mini party, we headed back to the hostel to wind down and prepare for the next days trip back to Managua. We had a nightly meeting where we briefly discussed our bittersweet feelings on our departure from Nicaragua. In general, today left a bittersweet note on all of our consciences. We spent the day bonding and connecting with our fellow glimpsers who are now our fellow family members. Today was similar to a family vacation, in that we could all relax around each other with trust and a sense of kinship kindled by the intimacy of shared experiences. As we spent some time reflecting on our journey over the past two and a half weeks, we have truly come to realize the worth and value of this amazing trip and our wholesome experience as a team. Every single one of us was meant to be here and the trip wouldn’t have been the same any other way. Codependency is a fundamental aspect of teamwork, and what better way to embrace that love, than a fun day! But it’s not over yet… Although it was was our last quote on quote day here in Matagalpa, I think we all agree that it wasn’t our last “Fun Day” together 🙂 ~McKenna and Jada