Travel Theme: Broken Lives


“This planet is a broken bone that didn’t set right, a hundred pieces of crystal glued together. We’ve been shattered and reconstructed.” ~ Tahereh Mafi

Broken lives…125 families forced to reconstruct their lives from the devastating rock and mudslides on Ometepe Island, Nicaragua. Yesterday, Ron and I tramped over boulders and through mud to reach the Los Ramos community to deliver supplies to the families. Take a walk with us so you can see for yourselves Mother Nature’s powerful and destructive forces.

Supplies were delivered at the top of the hill. “So far, this doesn’t look too bad,” I said encouragingly to Ron.
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Keep reading. You can’t believe the destruction ahead.

A Lesson in Real Humility


“Life is a long lesson in humility.”
― J.M. Barrie

 

I was raised in the belief that one should always be humble, which I interpreted as being meek, never accepting a compliment, and certainly never acknowledging a gift or a talent one might have. But, this week, I learned that I have completely misunderstood this virtue.
Instead of an eyes cast down, submissive, weak, breast-beating virtue; I discovered within me an ability to take an honest appraisal of my abilities, and accept responsibility for the good and not-so-good things that I have done.

After the horrifying mud and rock slides that consumed the indigenous community of Los Ramos, I took a hard look at what I could do to help this community. What was I good at doing? What was I ridiculously silly at attempting to do?

I’m too old to be digging boulders out of their road. My Spanish isn’t good enough to go door to door and collect money for the community. I can’t drive a straight nail. Truth be told, I hate driving at all. I don’t have a green thumb. I’m embarrassingly clumsy.

Yet, all false modesty aside, I am a great organizer. I can write well, and my computer skills are excellent. I have a large network of family, friends, and bloggers all over the world. It dawned on me that I could confidently use these skills to help Los Ramos rebuild.
Continue reading

Ometepe Island Mudslides and Destruction


Early Wednesday morning on October 8th, I awoke to take photos of the blood moon. The sky was inky black with clouds hiding the stars, as well as the eclipse of the moon. While I was standing on the beach, I shivered with a sense of foreboding. I couldn’t shake the feeling that something big was about to happen.

Thursday, the rains started. In 12 hours, we had 15 inches of rain. We lost our power early Thursday evening. Then, Friday morning, we had to walk into Moyogalpa to catch the ferry to take our very sick cat, Black Jack, to the vet in Rivas.

The rain sliced through the dark morning sky like sheets of glass. Our local beach bar’s ranchos toppled over like dominos.

IMG_4871 Please read more.

Ailsa’s Travel Theme: Cities


Where’s My Backpack Travel Theme this week is Cities. We just returned from traveling through Ecuador for a month and the cities are spectacular. Here are a few of my favorite shots.

We huffed and puffed our way up a ladder to the rooftop upon arriving in Quito. With an altitude of 2,800 meters, we dizzily watched the twinkling lights of the city below and the beacon of light from the Basilica de Voto Nacional.
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More city photos. Don’t leave yet!

The Volcanoes of Nicaragua


While I am traveling through Ecuador for the month of May, enjoy these photos of Nicaragua’s majestic volcanoes.

Please know that I haven’t fallen into a volcano, only off the blogging radar for a month. See you all at the end if the month. I can’t wait to share my travels, photos, comparisons, and thoughts of Ecuador.
Volcano Consiguina
Vulvan Cosiguina More beautiful volcano photos. Keep reading.

Travel Theme: Ready, Set, Glow!


Where’s my backpack? has a weekly travel theme. This week’s travel theme is GLOW and I have the perfect piece for this theme.

El Cerro Negro volcano in Northern Nicaragua is one of Central America’s youngest volcanoes. He ( Spanish El means a masculine volcano) was born in April 1850 and continues to be one of Nicaragua’s most active volcanoes. Currently his status is “restless”. His last major eruption was in 1999.
Eruption Cerro Negro

More glowing photos. Keep reading.

Weekly Photo Challenge: A Bird’s Eye View of Nicaragua


The Weekly Photo Challenge is On Top. Whether you are a bird or a cat on a hot tin roof, the sights above Nicaragua are spectacular.

Come fly with me.Much more to see.Read on.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Four Three-Picture Stories from Ometepe


The Weekly Photo Challenge is: Three  In this challenge we are to tell a story in three pictures, increasing the zoom to hone in on the subject.

Hello World

The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not by smashing it. ~Arnold H. Glasow 

Keep on reading. There are three more story pictures.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Layers of Lava


Ometepe Island, Nicaragua has two majestic volcanoes…Concepcion, the active volcano and Maderas, the dormant volcano.  Layers of lava, ash, clouds, and foliage add to the splendor of the ever-changing layers like a kaleidoscope.
kaleidescope explosion