It’s been one month since we said adiós to our beloved three bedroom, two bathroom home in San Juan del Sur and said hello to our new digs in Marsella Valley.
Located just 15 minutes from the center of San Juan our new rental home sits on a 1/2 acre parcel of land. Our current living space includes an open concept kitchen and living room, one spacious bedroom and one bathroom with a kick ass shower.
The second floor open-air thatch roof rancho is one of our favorite features of the house. It’s the perfect place to visit with friends during the day or evening.
An alternate and equally enticing option for outdoor lounging are the hammock chairs that hang on the front of the house. We love the abundance of outdoor living space our new abode offers.
On the property, a few steps from the main house, sits this cute little casita.
In addition to the casita we also have a private bedroom and bathroom which is located right under the rancho.
We promised exciting news in our previous post and here it is.
In Nica Now is now providing lodging!
Moving out of town was something we discussed for awhile before actually doing it. Did we want to give up the convenience of walking to our favorite hang outs, the central market and San Juan Bay? Well, we’re happy to report that thirty nights in we have absolutely no regrets with our decision to move to Marsella Valley.
An 8 minute walk puts us at Playa Marsella, where sunsets with a bottle of wine are tough to beat. A three minute drive up the hill takes us to Playa Maderas surf beach. Although we don’t actually surf we definitely enjoy watching those that do.
Gone are the days of bombas (firecrackers), bad karaoke and constant barking dogs and crowing roosters. At our new home in Marsella Valley we enjoy the sounds of birds chirping happily in the trees and a distant growl from a howler monkey now and then.
I’m discovering my green thumb and Gordon has plans to plant a little vegetable garden.
Our miniature schnauzer Maggie is equally content here. She loves to wander around the property sniffing, digging and exploring. She is gradually getting used to the horses that sometimes wander near the house.
Life here in the campo, as it’s called, is pretty sweet and we can’t wait to share these surroundings. Who wants to be our first official guests?
It’s been a super busy month for us here in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua! Too busy to even blog about it.
Our good friends Caroline and Adrien decided to buy a bar. Their decision to buy this bar was made in 48 hours — just two days before they were leaving for Belgium to spend time with family and friends. Adrien and Caroline asked for our help, and as good friends do we jumped right in.
In addition to managing Bar Republika, we’ve also moved. Stay tune for details about our new home (as well as some exciting news for In Nica Now) in our next blog post.
After 21 days of bartending, waiting tables, stocking the bar, prepping food and cooking Gordon and I were both ready for a break.
We finished our shift on Saturday afternoon and arrived home just before sunset. With a bottle of red wine in our back pack and our little Schnauzer Maggie by our side we strolled down to the beach.
We sipped on our wine, played fetch with Maggie and admired a magnificent sunset and were reminded why we love life in Nicaragua.
As the last of the light left us we packed up our belongings and wandered up the road to a local restaurant. Country western classics belted out from the stereo speakers as we sipped $1 beers and chatted with the owners Jose and Maria. We dined on delicious whole fried fish dinners and reminisced about our very first month in Poneloya, Nicaragua, the place where our expat adventure began just over two and a half years ago.
Time sure flies when you’re having fun!
Beach towns like San Juan del Sur celebrate the deeply religious holiday of Semana Santa with something resembling Spring Break in Cancun.
There is loud music, dancing and libations the entire length of beach. All major beer, rum and cell phone companies are represented by young ladies wearing company colors.
It’s a festive atmosphere, and not one meant just for the young party crowd.
Families take this time to get out of the city and have some fun. San Juan del Sur transforms into a mini amusement park of sorts complete with a carnival, beach and street vendors.
Contrary to North America festival conventions food and drink prices actually drop during this celebration. Good eats and cold beverages are plentiful and much less expensive than any other time of the year.
The same can’t be said for accommodations. Places to sleep are in short supply and demand makes for higher prices. Many locals rent rooms in their homes to make some extra cash which helps alleviate the bed shortage.
This particular Semana Santa in San Juan del Sur has been much different than the last.
We’ve heard speculation that many Managuans stayed home tending to property due to the earthquake red alert status that is currently menacing our capital city. We may never know the reasons for the low attendance numbers, but at a guess I’d say 50% stayed home.
The shame is that this year San Juan seemed ready for the influx of tourism. There were dozens of extra tents set up on the beach for shade, too many portable toilets to count (emptied daily), teams of people combing the streets and beach for garbage, a plethora of vendors and hundreds of police. Temporary parking was even set up in town and on the edge of town.
Elisha and I went out during the day and night to join in the festivities. There was an abundance of drinking and dancing on the street, in the temporary event bars, as well as all of the usual hangouts. Everyone was smiling, laughing and jumping to the beat.
There were a few over indulgers taking “naps”, but nothing compared to US Spring Break standards. We didn’t see any signs of drunk aggression or any real illegal activities.
What we did see was Nicaraguan families enjoying a much needed and deserved vacation at the beach. There were also legions of hard working Nicas running concession stands.
During my morning run I saw people working away setting up for sales. They were still hard at it when Elisha and I headed home for the night after enjoying the evening festivities. Often their children were sleeping on mattresses or hammocks after a long day in the sun.
I rode the rides AND jumped off the Claro tower.
Hopefully next year the crowds will be back, our town will be just as prepared and more of our expat community will stick around to enjoy Semana Santa in San Juan with us.
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