The highest point in El Salvador

Trip Start Sep 10, 2006
Trip End ??? ??, 2007

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Flag of El Salvador  ,
Saturday, December 16, 2006

It was a non-eventful day of travel from Honduras to El Salvador, with only mild confusion at the border crossing where we went from office to office trying to find someone who cared to see our passport. With the new agreement where one 90 day stamp works for four countries, border officials barely glance at your documentation before ushering you on, not that I'm complaining. We arrived at La Palma in the late afternoon, braced ourselves for El Salvador's steep hotel prices, and wandered around the cute touristy town after dumping our bags in the room. There is a plethora of artisania shops all selling identical wares based off of El Salvador's most famous artist called Llort, and Llort-inspired paintings on nearly every wall and building in town. There is also a plethora of "pupuserias" selling the ubiquitous pupusa, basically a corn tortilla with a filling of your choice, beans, cheese, pork fat, or any mixture of the aforementioned. We stayed away from the pig fat, but enjoyed the still very greasy bean and cheese variety. The pupuseria also had the novelty of a parrot who expertly and loudly imitated a crying baby during our entire dinner. Since everything in town was closed by 7:30, we had no choice but to head back to our hotel room for the rest of the evening, not that we ususally go out anyway...The next morning, I did some laundry in the sink and Matt hung it up on the room to dry. After a solid week of cloudy damp weather in Honduras, it was awesome to see clear sunny skies. We took a bus that wheezed and coughed it's way up a steep mountain road close to La Palma. From where we got off, it was an enjoyable one hour walk up a dirt road to El Salvador's highest point. The only thing it had in common with Honduras's highest point was (unfortunately) the view, or lack thereof. The top of the mountain is private property, and after paying our 2 dollar entrance fee, we found ourselves among a hoard of wealthy weekend warriors from the country's capital. They had tents set up all over a big grassy meadow, picnicing and BBQing and having a grand ol' time. Almost every kid was rocking out to an Ipod too. It was entertaining to people watch and take it all in. We took an excursion to a giant piece of bedrock split from the mountain, where we crossed the gap on a fallen tree bridge about 25 meters from the bottom of the split. The clouds had lifted a bit, so we had a decent view from the other half of the rock. Later in the afternoon, we reversed the journey on foot and by bus to La Palma, had an excellent beef stir fry (and Matt ate all the veggies too) and unnoteworthy Salvadorean beer. In keeping with the town, we shut down early, so we could get an early start on a long travel day in the morning.
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