Hiking the Masaya Volcano at dusk. Rock, ash, smoke, sulfur. We peer over the edge; we’re close – the closest we can be to any active volcano in the world.
Up the slope, the steep, slippery slope. The view – there are no words that suffice.
Red smoke, red grass, red sunset. Jupiter glows over the park under the moon. Stars are everywhere. We are small. And feeling small makes me feel very big.
I climbed a volcano!
Our morning hike begins on the dirt roads of the town, winding through the streets, and eventually into the woods. It is only me, a retired British couple, and the local guide, who leads us straight through the brush and up the hillside, chattering in Spanish as he does. Along the way, coffee beans, oranges, dragon fruit, pinto beans.
We hike for three hours to the finca de pina, and then, pineapples, everywhere. The most delicious, sweet, white pineapples, so soft that we eat the core.
The pineapple farm on the hill. The view is amazing.
Today, a trip to San Juan de Oriente to visit the artisans. A family that weaves baskets from the palms, a woman who spins and paints pottery, a man who carves figures from volcanic rock. Here, there is beauty in the simplicity of life.
At the end of the day, we drive to the lookout over the laguna to stop for juice. There are fried bananas and cheese to eat.
I normally don’t eat cheese or fried anything, but I normally don’t wander cobblestone street with motor taxis and Cathedrals in Nicaragua. It’s about embracing the discomfort.