Thursday, June 23, 2011

Sensory Overload.

The past week has flown by! We bought about 400 books in Managua on Monday afternoon, and have spent the last two days categorizing and cataloguing them.

The receipt for our books!!

Shopping for books

It's so exciting to see all of these books sprawled out at the Arts Center!

To catch you up on the last few days, here are my journal entries:

Jona drinking his Coca in the rain.

Day 15 - Managua, Nicaragua - Tuesday - 06.21.11 - Time unknown
I wish I knew what time it was, but I don't because i have been in bed sick all day. I started feeling ill yesterday afternoon and it has lingered. It's an odd combination of aches, shakes, cough, headache, and just overall weakness. I am not running a fever or vomiting, so I am hesitant to call it the flu. Poor Emily is sick throwing up today and Eric has had "the runs", so we are quite the sad bunch over here. but, don't you worry, Scott is feeling just fine :-)

Thankfully, Terri Marlett (founder of NICA) is letting us stay in her vacation apartment in Managua that happens to have air conditioning. We are so grateful to be here now instead of hot, sweaty, humid El Transito.

Day 16 - Managua and El Transito, Nicaragua - Wednesday - 06.22.11- 9:43 p.m.
Woke up feeling SO much better today, back to normal. Emily is also back to 100%, so we are ready to get out of Managua.

We ate breakfast at a delicious bakery, Sampson Bakery, and had a nice conversation with the owner, who also happens to be a painter. I had a gooey cinnamon roll with a cappuchino.

The next few hours entailed our serach for a place to mail off our postcards... to no evail. Mail just must not exist here. We ran all over Managua asking people where a post office was and the typical first reaction was a blank stare, followed by a list of maybes. We never did find a place... perhaps another city?

We then took a cab to the bus station that would take us from Managua to El Transito. Long story short............ We thought there was a bus at 11:00, but it turns out that the only bus to El Transito came at 3:00. It took us several minutes of wandering to figure this out and amongst the walking we encountered so many interesting/disgusting smells..... Oh, our poor noses..... I think in the entire 3 hours from the cab ride to the bus to finally entering El Transito, I inhaled a total of 1 of those hours. The smells were the strangest blend of body odor, rotting fruit, gas fumes, dirt, and garbage. Eek.

We ended up catching an 11:00 bus to Leon, which passes through El Transito. Bus rides to and from Managua are quite memorable. They CRAM these buses to teh brim with people, not even standign room is available by the time they shut those doors. What that means for those of us lucky enough to have a seat is the unsightly and unwanted crotch-in-the-face. That and teh endless push and shove of women's hips as they scooch their way up that impossibly narrow aisle with goods to sell. Yes. As if the bus wasn't crowded and hot and smelly enough, you get to experience, yet again, the joy of vendors putting candy and fried chicken and flashlights in your face. I will never understand the purpose of the flashlight vendor.

Needless to say, we were grateful to be back home in El Transito. We spent teh afternoon tearing open the boxes of 400 books that we purchased in Managua, categorizing them, and inputting them into an excel spreadsheet.

We have a lot more work to do, but it was a great start. It felt so good looking at our huge piles of books!

Tonight was the first night we were able to see the stars and my goodness, what a sight! Emily brought out some blankets and teh four of us lied down in the sand, staring up at the sky in awe. Every one of our senses was evoked:

The smell of fish, salt, and sand.
The sight of a vast dark sky glittered with shining stars cast above the rolling ocean.
The sound of waves roaring and crashing to the shore.
The feel of sand beneath our back and my husband's arm supporting my neck.
The taste of salty, humid air.

The universe is such a vast wonder. I am so grateful that my God gave me the senses to enjoy every aspect of it, and the knowledge and comfort of knowing that no happen-stance could have created such a marvelous thing.

With my nose stuck in a book,


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