After the whirlwind of a month that included us finding a supplier in Masaya, finding the supplies, launching our online store, selling our first bracelets online and giving away our first notebooks–we were actually going back to the US for the holidays. Things had been so crazy in Nicaragua with LOOTB that the trip back home for the holidays really snuck up on us and before we knew it, we were packing our backpacks, saying goodbye to the family we had been living with and walking to the highway to catch a bus to the Managua Airport. We still had so much to do, so we decided that we’d just stay up all night working at the airport. We read that people had done it before in airports all over the world and it sounded like fun to us, so we wanted to try it out.
We had never taken the public buses to the Managua Airport before and couldn’t get a straight answer from anyone on how we would exactly get there, but we knew the general direction we had to go. We were going to take the bus from Masaya to Tipitapa, get off at Tipitapa, then go across the street to catch another bus going towards Managua and tell the bus assistant that we wanted to get off at the airport. Our Spanish had improved so much since Laguna de Apoyo that traveling and asking people for help wasn’t nearly as intimidating as it was when we first arrived to Nicaragua. Two buses, lots of dust and a few very helpful Nicaraguans later, we were in front of the airport throwing our bags out of the back of the bus and jumping out of the semimoving vehicle. Gotta love Nicaraguan trasportation.
We walked across the street into the airport, found a spot near the food court area to put all of our stuff down and set up our little working station.
It was about 3 in the afternoon, so there were tons of people coming and going from all over the world–I’ve always loved airports for that. Since I was a little girl, one of my favorite places to go has always been to an airport because once you’re in an airport the possibilities are endless. You can go anywhere in the world you want to, it’s all right there at your finger tips just a flight away. There’s just a certain energy that comes from everyone because of that in an airport, which made it the perfect place to work for the night.
Jonathon was working on editing our latest video, Life Out of the Box Part 3, while I was working on putting the final touches on our bracelets and making our envelopes. Our little silver food court table became our office/LOOTB bracelet factory. As the night went on, the staff would come and go, some would look at us and smile and others didn’t even pay attention.
We worked until about 4am, when I was just so tired that I had to lay down for a bit. I rested my head on our biggest backpack as a pillow on the floor just near JB’s feet and closed my eyes. Unfortunately, the building was very air conditioned, so the floor was freezing and I only got maybe 20 mins of sleep.
I got up and took a quick walk around the airport to get my blood pumping, wake up and hopefully find some coffee. As I looked around, it was an interesting scene: it was still dark outside, there were a few Nicaraguan airport officers chatting the security gate and a few other travelers camped out with their stuff sleeping in the corners. We weren’t the only crazy ones here pulling an all nighter.
Besides that, it was completely empty–the emptiest airport I’d ever seen. With no work, people or loud noises around me I took a moment to reflect on what we were about to do. After 8 months of living in a third world that we now call home, we were going to go back to the first world–the world that was the only world we had ever known until we made the big leap. It had taken us months to adjust here in Nicaragua, would we be able to adjust back quickly? I’d experienced culture shock here in Nicaragua but it would be interesting if I got culture shock coming back to the place I’d spent 24 years of my life living in. I didn’t have answers, it was all unknown, which of course made it that much more exciting. In just a few hours, we’d be getting on a plane to head back to California for 3 weeks and I had the butterflies.