Weekly Photo Challenge: Ruta de Evacuacion

The Great Escape? Thanks to a comment on my blog by Frizztext, I have to add another Weekly Photo Challenge to my interpretation of escape.

Screen Shot 2013-05-18 at 7.31.48 PMYou see, we have an active volcano in our backyard. Ruta de Evacuacion signs are posted all over the island in case Vulcan Concepcion decides to wake up from her three-year hibernation. Yes! You heard right! It’s only been three years since she erupted. These evacuation signs are hysterical. They are posted in every business, along the roads, and even in the cattle fields.

Ron and I are ready, though! We figure that we can kayak off the island until the coast is clear. When Concepcion erupts, she burps ash. It’s scattered like a thin dusting of dirty snow over everything. The great escape? We’re prepared!

Where ya gonna go when the volcano blows?
ruta de evacuation copy


Weekly Photo Challenge: Escape! Go Fly a Kite

Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.” ~ Anais Nin

When one yearns to run away..to slam the door on reality…to shut out the stresses of everyday life…
Go fly a kite…throw your dreams into space and await the wondrous surprises.

Imagination is the highest kite one can fly~ Lauren Bacall


True courage is like a kite; a contrary wind raises it higher” ~
John Petit-Senn


The optimist pleasantly ponders how high his kite will fly; the pessimist woefully wonders how soon his kite will fall.

~ William Arthur Ward

kite flyer copyThanks to my son, Cory, for the above photo. Isn’t it incredible?

Johnson: A Nicaraguan Giver

“We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill


I can think of no better way to describe Johnson than through Winston Churchill’s quote. My mother always said there are two types of people in this world: givers and takers. Nicaraguan takers may eat more than gallo pinto, but Nicaraguan givers sleep peacefully through the crowing roosters. Johnson, an incredibly talented athlete, embodies my definition of a Nicaraguan giver.

We met Johnson many years ago on Ometepe Island. I knew the minute I laid eyes on him, that he was special. This humble, gracious young man strives to be the very best in everything that he does. From working in the plantain fields with his father to training for an ultramarathon, to learning English, Johnson strives for perfection.

In February 2013, Johnson won his first grueling Survivor Run in the Fuego y Agua Race. For over 16 hours, he raced up and down volcanoes, dug holes, swam with a raw egg strapped to his head, carried a 20 ft. bamboo pole up Maderas volcano, climbed coconut trees, carried a live chicken, and hauled 50 pounds of firewood on his back. After the race, I asked Johnson, “Are you tired?” He replied, “A little bit,” with a sheepish grin on his face.

That’s Johnson..remarkably cool, calm, and humble after competing with world-class athletes. Johnson never had any formal training. He just likes to run. So, with the help of several sponsors, he has now entered a new realm…a new world…much bigger than his tiny tropical island home. He is training and practicing in the U.S. for six months with a goal to return to Nicaragua and compete for a spot in the 1216 Olympics.

I am so outrageously proud of Johnson! I know he’s a little homesick and it will take a while for him to adjust to such a different world beyond Ometepe Island. He told me he learned how to make gallo pinto, but not like his mother’s! I told him that was a good skill to learn because his body is craving the life force of Nicaragua. I have no doubt that Johnson will return a winner. He has been given an opportunity of a lifetime and I have faith that he’ll return to proudly represent Nicaragua in the 2016 Olympics.

Wish him luck! He’s competing in his first race this weekend: The Spartan Race in Texas! Go Johnson!

Read more about Johnson, here: La Prenza

Weekly Photo Challenge: Storytelling Patterns

“Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way.”
― Terry Tempest Williams, When Women Were Birds: Fifty-four Variations on Voice 


Living abroad has increased my creativity. I’ve broken out of established patterns enabling me to look at the world with eyes without borders. I have become a storyteller, seeking tales in patterns of life.

“Humans are pattern-seeking story-telling animals, and we are quite adept at telling stories about patterns, whether they exist or not.”
― Michael Shermer

Hang In There Faithful Readers

It only seems fitting because I am from the International Storytelling Center of the World, to ask you for your patience in telling my sometimes off the wall stories about living on an island in the middle of the an enormous lake, in the middle of Nicaragua, in the middle of Central America.

This week is ridiculously crazy, so stay tuned for more unusual posts from the land of the not quite right. We’re alive and well, but lately we’ve been consumed with a new adventure. I can tell you it involves the words, “Cut”, “Again”, and “That’s a wrap.”

See you soon! Hang in there. I’ll be back next week with more stories.

That’s a wrap.

Weekly Photo Challenge: New Life From Above

“The trick to forgetting the big picture is to look at everything close up.” ― Chuck Palahniuk

And, I might add….from above. Mama hen stepped off her nest to get a bite to eat. While she was gone, a chick hatched.

Life is all about perspective. The little chick could have thought this:

The hens they all cackle, the roosters all beg, But I will not hatch, I will not hatch. For I hear all the talk of pollution and war As the people all shout and the airplane roar, So I’m staying in here where it’s safe and it’s warm, And I WILL NOT HATCH!~ Shel Silverstein

Instead, the chick thought this:

“Ready for a new life” ― Sylvia Plath

IMG_2462Meanwhile I thought this:

“If you want a new life,  first give praise for having the old one!”
         ― Stephen Richards