samedi 23 juillet 2005

Ometepe Island, July 20 2005, noon.

Dear Claire,
I'm sitting on a wooden rocking chair, listening to the tropical rain and the neverending sound of the waves. I'm on a patio, sharing the calmness of the moment with a few other people, some reading, some napping, in the hammocks around me.
it's noon, and it's been raining for about 14 hours straight. Ironically, we posponed our visit to a nearby waterfall because of all the water that falls from the sky.
This place is called Santo Domingo. It's not much of a village... more a small group of houses and a couple of hostels on the shore of the lake Nicaragua. There isn't even a church nor any convenience store. Two hostels have restaurants, but other than that, if you want to eat something, you have to help yourself on a coconut or a banana tree (which I did by the way). We are out of power for 7 hours or so. Luckily, the restaurant where we had breakfast this morning uses gaz, not electricity. But we ate at candlelight, since the storm was too strong to enjoy their patio or keep the windows open.
As I write this, a few long legged white birds are fishing on the beach. This sisland is called ometepe. In the ancient aztec language, ome means two and tepe means volcano. The island is shaped like an 8 with a volcano in the center of each part of the 8. There's a few beaches along the shore. Small island, though, even if it's the largest of the lake, which have about 400 islands.
The rain is warm, here, and it doesn't stop the blue cockatiels like birds to argue with one another in the palm trees beside the patio. The bilingual family which share the patio with Suzie and me speaks german and french. The little girl is reading the 5th Harry Potter (in german) kinda funny since I'm reading the 4th one (in spanish, to practice).
It's my 44th day of traveling central america. 44 days since I left Montreal and it's the first one during which I'll do absolutely nothing. No visit, no hike, nothing. Not even browsing the web and writing on my weblog, since as you'd probably guessed already, there's no internet access around Santo Domingo. It's ok, though. I beleive an internet connexion would spoil the feeling here, would spoil the palm huts on the beach, the coconut trees on the other side of the patio and would probably spoil the way i'm writing this - old fashion way, with a pen and some piece of paper. (It'll be a good enough time to send it to you by the net later on).
It's a really interesting island. All the goods are brought here by and old ferry and carried around by even older buses or horses carriages. nature is everywhere around and since there isn't a lot of people living on the island, most of the noise you hear come from the birds, the wind, the waves and the howler monkeys that live nearby the volcano.
Right now, one of these blue cockatiels is having a feast out of a huge red flower on the patio and by the tone of some cry nearby, the others, hidden on the trees, seam jealous.
Other that a few small falcon-like black birds and a rare eagle, I haven't seen any predators on the island. The only other species i've seen are dogs and that only cat who lives at my hostel - Isabel the cat - and who's really good at fiching, judging by the size of the fishes she brings back from the shore at dusk.
In a few days, I should be on my way to Costa Rica, so it's likely that I would have crossed the border by the time you'll read this.
But for now and here, surrounded by the waves, the wind and the birds, you're with me through this pen and paper.
I'll write again soon,
With love,

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