Hola from El Salvador! I’ve been on the move since I left my Nicaraguan homestay two weeks ago, hence the silence.
My time at La Mariposa included one month of Spanish lessons, volunteering with children, and living with a local family. This memorable experience already feel like a lifetime ago! Since then, I’ve changed countries and made big decisions…like when I will be returning home to San Diego! More on that in a bit. ; ) Also, to close the loop on my last blog post, my sister had her baby on March 13! Her name is Wren, and she is simply precious.
The past two weeks I was able to visit parts of Nicaragua that I still hadn’t seen on this trip nor during my visit in 2015. I reconnected with a volunteer from All Hands Ecuador (circa September 2016), posed atop a cathedral in Leon, hiked and camped on the active volcano Telica, visited the mountainous coffee region of Matagalpa and the cigar factories of Esteli, and swam in the Somoto Canyon.
I made new friends in a hostel in northern Nicaragua and we traveled by bus-truck-bus-bus-car across the border into Honduras and then across another border into El Salvador all in one day.
I’m currently in the capital city of San Salvador. I never thought I would end up here, but I experienced some great travel karma and made friends with two locals who have graciously shown me around their city and many parts of the country! They really want me to love El Salvador. There isn’t a lot of backpacker tourism here compared to other parts of Central America, and it still has a bad rep. It often gets overlooked because not that many people know what to do here, or they think it’s still too dangerous. I honestly wasn’t sure if I was going to go either after reading the US travel warning, but something pulled me here and I felt guilty skipping it. (To be fair, Mexico and Colombia also have travel warnings and they are also places I have visited/will visit on this trip.) The people, culture, food and sights are really good, and now I can say confidently that I am so glad I came!
So, now…Where am I off to next and when am I coming home? I’m happy to say that I can finally tell you the answer to at least one of those questions! I will be flying home from Mexico City on June 8!! There are several reasons why I made this decision, but ultimately, it is just time. I’ve been thinking about what I want to do next a lot more lately, and I’m looking forward to this next chapter of my life. While there is still a lot of uncertainty ahead (like which city, state, or country I will live in), the endless possibilities fill me with hope and excitement. Does anyone want to petition for their hometown?
As for where I’m going next, per usual, I’m not exactly sure…I know I need to be in Mexico City May 25 for a reunion with three of my closest girls from grad school (YAY)! Laura is flying in from Switzerland, Jessica from Chicago, and Mabela who already lives there will be our gracious host! That was an exciting plan to make. That means I have just under two months to fit in the rest of the countries en route to San Diego. No more 2 months in only 1 country! Honduras, Guatemala, Belize, and Mexico are all calling my name, so I’ll see how this all plays out.
After 8 months of minimal planning and slooowww travel, I’m excited to explore more “parts unknown” during these final months! That isn’t to say that my traveling will end when I get back to the states…So much has happened since I’ve been gone that I owe many of you a visit. Who knows where I will head off to next!?
Do you have any recommendations for my final countries?
P.S. The title of this blog post put the song “Road to Nowhere” by the Talking Heads in my head. An oldie but a goodie if you want to have a listen! Well we know where we’re going…But we don’t know where we’ve been…