Ometepe and bedbugs

Trip Start Jul 07, 2009
Trip End Oct 05, 2009

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Where I stayed
Kabanas & American Hotel

Flag of Nicaragua  ,
Saturday, August 8, 2009

Halfway through the ferry ride from Granada to Ometepe we decided we would NOT, as originally planned, ferry back to Granada. Our ferry ride was only 4 hours long. Plus the 1 hours we sat on the ferry prior to leaving Granada. All in all, not bad. But we were in no hurry to do it all again. The ferry itself was a pretty smooth ride. We were in ’first class’ which meant we did have AC so once we actually left the dock we were able to stop sweating for a couple of hours. Unfortunately we also had a TV in the cabin. Half an hour into the ride the TV sprang to life, blasting the most absolutely hideous and annoying music videos I’ve ever seen (and heard!)
There were about 12 people in the upper cabin with us, dozing away. Within two minutes everyone was awake and leaving to sit outside. I got up and turned the TV down a few notches and put on my headphones, trying to drown out the sound. No luck. I don’t remember the name of the musician (?) on the videos but it was the same guy in every one. Mom thought he looked like a Nicaraguan Don Ho. He wore tight acid washed jeans in every video and favored heavy necklaces hanging outside buttoned-up shirts. He sported the biggest, baddest 80’s mulletino I’ve ever seen. Everything about the guy was just plain wrong. Plus, every video featured Don Nica-HO surrounded by 4-5 latinas wearing teeny tini bikinis, dancing and shaking their butts. Which wouldn’t be too bad except every 30 seconds showed a close up of shaking and gyrating butt and crotch. Seriously, the whole TV screen was filled with shaking butt! One or two songs might have been ok (probably not) but three hours later we were gagging. There is such a thing as too much!

The bus, I think. The bus is preferable. Just gotta figure out a route to get us back to Granada, since we left everything but a small backpack each at Valeria’s.

Lago de Nicaragua is the second largest body of water in the Americas, after the Great Lakes. It contains over 350 small islands. Ometepe is the largest of these islands and is formed by two volcanoes, one on each end of the island. We arrived just before dark and were met by the usual onslaught of taxi drivers vying for our business. We decided to head to Playa Santa Domingo, a beachy area that’s supposed to be centrally located to all of the natural attractions.
Mom likes to leave the decision-making about where we stay to me. After checking out a couple of places we decided to go with the first guesthouse we looked at which was basic but seemed fine. And for $8 each it was a bargain! Two single beds, our own bath corner (not bathroom since a curtain and half-wall divided it from the beds) and a tiny window and fan. It was HOT! The window granted no ventilation whatsoever and when we turned on the bare-bulb light overhead, little tiny bugs flew through the screen and swarmed around the light. Yuck. I figured we could read outside on the huge common patio overlooking the lake, which featured a comfy variety of rocking chairs, hammocks, and lounge chairs. No problem.

What I didn’t notice until sitting down on the bed was that the mattresses themselves looked like hammocks and must have been originally purchased in 1958. They were saggy. They were uncomfortable. They were dirty (the single sheet laying over the top wouldn’t stay tucked in so I woke up on bare mattress. Gross!) The pillows felt like they were made out of hard bits of Styrofoam. Ick! So not only was the room stuffy and hot, the beds were absolutely miserable. I woke up crabby. I woke up wanting just to be home for the first time this trip.

Mom woke up covered in bites. Bedbug bites. Clusters and clusters of bedbug bites - at least 30 of them. She was pissed. She was itchy. She was miserable. Time to change accomodations. So much for trying to save a buck.

After breakfast Mom and I went in search for another guesthouse. We decided we could suffer the heat with a comfy bed. Or we could deal with a bad bed if we had ventilation. No way were we going to suffer bedbugs! We found a guesthouse a short walk away and made the move to the Kabanas. The owner didn't seem too happy to see us but the beds were covered in clean white sheets, we had air conditioning again, and spent the rest of the day trying to catching our breath, recovering from bug bites, and listening to the rain and breezes blow through all four windows. We decided since neither of us got much sleep to save the hiking and exploring until tomorrow and just enjoy another tropical storm and the view from our room to Lago de Nicaragua.

On Saturday we toured the island a bit and decided to stay in Moyogalpa at the American Hotel, across the island from Playa Santo Domingo, where we needed need to catch the ferry on Sunday morning back to Managua via San Jorge, Rivas and Granada.
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mschwartz on

Re: Howdy
Hey Jax,
Aren't you supposed to be WORKING at your desk, not reading this nonsense? Great to hear from you! Mel

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