October 4, 2015: Our One Dozenth Anniversary!

Hard to believe that today has been twelve years since Dominica and I got hitched!  And this is our first anniversary where we have had a Liesl for most of the time that we have been married.

It is Sunday and we have no plans for today.  We are spending the weekend relaxing as this is our first full weekend in Granada, Nicaragua and we want to see what it is like around here and get some time to just have down time as it always takes a week after traveling into a new country before you really get settled in and have a chance to just enjoy being where you are.

Today was pretty hot, again.  There continues to be no rain.  We were promised rain.  The weather forecast continues to tease us with promises of rain but nothing ever comes.

This morning we got up, got the kids ready and walked over to Cafe Isabella which is right around the corner from us.  This is a more “local” place to eat than most anywhere that we have been going thus far, except for Pizza Vale.  We got traditional breakfasts today.  I went for a simpler mean and Dominica went for the full traditional Nicaraguan breakfast which consists of scrambled eggs, gallo pinto, fried cheese and fried plantains.  It is a sizable meal.

It was a nice breakfast and it was nice to sit outside on the porch while we ate.  We will be coming back here often, it was a good place at a good price.  Barely more expensive than buying groceries.

After breakfast we went back to the house and went for a swim.  This is my first time in the swimming pool since we have been here!  We had a nice time cooling off in the pool.  It was actually cool enough that it was hard to get in because the water was actually quite cold.

This evening, around four, I went out for a long walk up to the north east side of town up past the university up there.  It was an interesting walk and I went through several barios.  I probably did four to five miles. It was extremely hot, though, and I was drenched in sweat.  As usual, it is the humidity not the raw heat that is the issue.

The walk was great.  So many people are outside, I got a really great view into Nicaraguan life.  I walked through several incredibly poor neighbourhoods and even a little shanty town.  We’ve been warned several times about Granada having dangerous areas but I think that those warnings are overblown.  Everyone, even in the roughest parts of town, are so nice and friendly.  You can stop and talk to anyone.  Nothing feels scary at all.

I came back through a different route and worked by way through the city streets making it all of the way around without needing to use a map at any point.  I am starting to get a good sense of my directions now.

Once back I showered, changed and talked Luciana into going out to dinner tonight.  For our anniversary dinner we decided to go out to Imagine, a restaurant in town that Dominica has been wanting to go to since pretty much our first day here.  That was an easy walk to downtown.

There was only one other table seated with us at dinner.  Out of six people eating in the restaurant, we were four of them.  It is definitely the off season (and a Sunday.)

Liesl and Luciana had nachos with cheese and coconut shrimp for dinner that they shared.  Dominica got an amazing grilled vegetable platter that was excellent.  I went for the fish tacos which were really interesting.  You could not pick them up to eat, they were on hard tostada bases that I could barely cut through and were loaded up with cabbage.  They were quite tasty, but challenging to eat.

Kevin, the owner, stopped by to talk to us for a bit before going on stage to do a set with Scott. They have live music at Imagine nearly every night.  I had one of the house infused rum drinks made with crystalized ginger.  I also tried Kevin’s own special maple Manhattan made with a maple liqueur that he brought back from a recent trip to Vermont.  It was quite good.

We decided, since it was our anniversary, that we would get dessert as well. We went for two helpings, among the four of us, of the restaurants only dessert – which was featured in Travel + Leisure Magazine.  It was vanilla ice cream and chocolate fondue on mango bread, it was quite good.

On the walk home we stopped and picked up lollipops for Luciana (and Liesl got some too) from a guy who sells them out of a basket on the corner.  It cost a whole fifteen cents for them each to get two things.

We came home and had a short night of relaxing in our bedroom with the AC on but by around ten thirty were sending them off to bed.  We were pretty tired.  The heat really causes us to want to go to bed a lot earlier than we are used to.