Nicaragua

Looking for Miraflor (Drive Day 68 minus 14 years)

Posted on Updated on

0906a nic srn hostel

We check out of this cooler-than-our-camper hostel and head higher into the hills, searching for an eco-reserve a guidebook says just opened. Butterflies make faster progress over the rocky strips through fields that count as roads. Eight hours of 4-wheel drive and we are so lost we ask some farmers for directions. I think if I call the resort on the sat phone and ask them to hold, I can get a farmer to listen, figure out where we went wrong and point us in the right direction. She presses it into her forehead instead: if she’s ever used a phone it was inside a building.

0907c nic rural shanties

Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa.

San Rafael Del Norte (Drive Day 67 minus 14 years)

Posted on Updated on

0905a nic leon girl floor
Nicaragua; photo by Gary Geboy

This little girl reminds me that thirty years ago Yanina-the-Sandinista-publisher’s-wife was still nursing me through the fevers of malaria. I dig out my mother’s journal and in her cryptic, emotionless documentation is more a ships’ log cataloging disasters than Dear Diary.

0905b IMG_2231

Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa.

Leaving Leon (Drive Day 66 minus 14 years)

Posted on Updated on

0904a nic trot up window

We drive away with extra bottles of Flor de Cana rum and head for the hills. Mountains, really, to the town of San Rafael del Norte. It’s a day’s drive into what used to be Sandinista country and it’s not hard to understand why Nicaraguans embraced a revolution. Up here, you ride your horse to the corner store and steal glimpses of the outside world through the TV set in the hotel lobby. We look at a calendar on the wall, see that it’s Alex’s birthday and need to hear his voice so much that we break out the satellite phone. I’m sure the other guests think we’re CIA.

0904b nic onion man
Onion seller, taking TV break
0904c nic tv watcher
Same onion seller, back at night for the action flicks

Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa.

Loving Leon (Drive Day 65 minus 14 years)

Posted on Updated on

MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA
Photo by Jesus. Really. The photographer’s name is Jesus.

It’s not every city where Jesus takes your photo from a shoebox – even if, when you email your friends the photo, they think you’ve been kidnapped. If Leon is holding us hostage, we have a Nicaraguan version of Stockholm syndrome. Just look at these images Gary is capturing.

0903b nic leon bread lady
Photo by Gary Geboy
0903c nic leon black outline graf
Photo by Gary Geboy
0903d nic leon blue door gae
 Photo by Gary Geboy

0903e nic leon che plus art

Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa.

Taking shelter in Leon (Drive Day 64 minus 14 years)

Posted on Updated on

MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

The streets flood in minutes when afternoon storms hit this Colonial city. A teenager brings us inside his house to wait it out, and there are cold beers with a view of the cathedral when skies clear.

 

 

0902d nic leon beer victoria
Leon: Photo by Gary Geboy

It’s a stunning city, offering protection on both journeys. The first time around it’s where we met the publisher of El CentroAmericano, who took us in so that his wife Yanina could nurse me back from a bout of malaria. She still recognizes me and the chance to thank her makes every bump on the road we’ve travelled worth it.

0902a 203

Follow this bonus-material blog and ride along on a one-year road trip that inspired the memoir The Drive: Searching for Lost Memories on the Pan American Highway. On sale now. Get yours through the buy-the-book links at the bottom of the landing page on my teresabrucebooks.com website or here or here. Planning a road trip? Buy the audiobook here. Like The Drive’s Facebook page and tweet back at me @writerteresa.