The Casas Viejas Project

Sebaco
Sebaco

Back on the road with El Porvenir, a national NGO, we travel the Pan-American Highway, trashed with plastic bags and bottles, through Nicaragua to Sebaco and check in to one of the only hotels. We are in the breadbasket of the country. Fields of sugarcane, rice, beans, peanuts, tomatoes, and at higher elevations, coffee, surround the valley. Semi-trailers and buses carry workers, animals and vegetables to and fro. The town is a trade center disguised as a truck stop with lots of banks, prostitutes and gas stations on a contaminated river.

Sebaco market

The afternoon is free so Bob and I … Read more...

Nicaragua – The Good, Bad and Ugly

Riding the roads in the back of the truck
Riding the roads in the back of the truck

A few statistics on Nicaragua:

· $1028 – Second lowest per capita income in the Americas

· 48% of population live below poverty line

· 30 – 40% of homes have a woman head of household

· President – Daniel Ortega – Sandanista Party – for the 2nd time.

Two of our traveling companions, one from the U.S. and one from Nicaragua, are political history buffs. During our many hours of traveling to and from our survey sites we had plenty of time for lively, interesting, informative discussions on the Read more...

The Survey Begins – Nicaragua

Oxen carrying firewood
Oxen carrying firewood

Up with the dawn – as usual – Bob and I walk the waking streets of Dario. See it cool and quaint. Men with oxen make their rounds delivering lena (stove wood) gleaned from all nearby bushes and trees, for the breakfast fires. No wonder there’s a sparse treeless environment surrounding every village. Women with children carry straw baskets on their heads filled with the day’s wares; fruits and vegetables, fresh baked bread and rozquitos (flour cakes filled with cane syrup), pork and chicken; looking for the perfect location to set up for the day.

p2271307The small Read more...

Nicaragua with Water for People and El Porvenir

Hotel Las Mercedes
Hotel Las Mercedes

Immediately upon arriving three hours late in the capital city of Managua, Bob and I get tremors of third world country glitches. The chip installed in my phone doesn’t work, but it’s a nice relief. The representative of our hotel tells us we have no reservations, but we check in anyway. We don’t actually meet up with anyone until the next morning. Everybody’s late. After breakfast Bob and I meet and greet the other two World Water Corps, Water for People volunteers. Elaine, our team leader from Denver, is an EPA employee who lives close to the Read more...