After having a great time of giving school supplies to the kids over at The Peace Project, we decided that it was time for us to head down to San Juan del Sur to spend some time working with the San Juan del Sur Library. We had volunteered with the Library for their Mobile Library project back in July when we went around to different schools, checked out books to them, made arts and crafts with them and read stories to them during recess. We had such a great time and really connected with their program because not only are they education oriented, but they are very involved with the people of the Nicaraguan community and therefore know what the local people need to progress. We want to give people here what they truly need.
We were so excited to get back down south to where we first began our big journey here in Nicaragua, so we packed up our stuff in Hotel Central and headed for the Masaya bus station in the local market. The walk from our place to the dusty local market was quite a trek with our big backpacks, but we were happy to be out walking around the streets of Masaya again. When we finally got to the bus station, we couldn’t find a single bus that was heading south towards San Juan. We asked several bus drivers where we were supposed to go and they all pointed outside of the bus station. We were a bit confused as to why the bus we needed to take was the only bus not coming into the massive bus station, but we took their directions and headed out of the market and towards a local neighborhood.
As we started walking towards the exit of the big bus station dust bowl, a short drunk local man walked right up to me and started yelling something at me. He pointed at me, got very close and looked right into my eyes. My instinctual reaction was to get away from him because he seemed aggressive and after the incident of getting hit on the bus in Rivas, I wasn’t going to let myself become victim to anything like that again. As I was just about to step back from him, he quickly put his hand right up to my face in front of my eyes. Jonathon swooped right in between us and yelled, “no!” which made him stop and jumped back. Jon towered over the little man and scared him a bit so he stopped following us–at least for a few minutes. We walked through the streets just outside of the market, where hundreds of street food and veggie vendors were selling to locals. It was a chaotic and loud scene and with our big backpacks on, we just wanted to get to wherever the heck we were supposed to be.
We finally got out of the market area and emerged into a quiet residential area. Just as I was getting a bit more comfortable with my surroundings, the small local man started walking close to us again. We both instantly had our guards up and I started to walk in front of Jonathon. My heart started beating and I started getting a panicked feeling to run away or find help. Finally, a nice local taxi driver told him to leave us alone and he did. A huge relief came over us both and we grabbed each others hand.
We kept walking for what felt like miles, not knowing or understanding exactly where we were going, until we saw where the end of the long road took us: the highway. There was no bus stop, station or any sign that indicated the bus was going to pick us up here, but we had been here long enough to know that in Nicaragua, that’s rarely the case at all.
When we saw the bus, we’d have to wave it down and it would pull over–Nica style. We didn’t know when it would come or what it was going to look like, we’d just have to read the top of the bus and hope that it was going to San Juan.
Several colorful buses went by, but after 15 minutes on the side of the highway, we waved down our bus to San Juan. We threw our bags on the top of the bus and then jumped in from the back because it was so full. We didn’t care how crowded the bus was, we were just happy to finally be on our bus and on our way back to the little beach town of San Juan del Sur.