Hotel Lobster Inn (Little Corn Island) Nicaragua

Price:15 US dollars

Location: Take a right out of the boat dock. A couple block walk.

I moved to Lobster Inn to save some money and regretted it. Around two in the morning when the electricity went off I was swarmed with mosquitoes. It was alright when I had the fan on. They need to invest in some mosquito nets. They have screened windows but they don’t work well. To many gaps around the edges. Bathroom sink did not work unless you played with the plumbing. Don’t ever have any change.

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Sacrifice of the cuy (guinea pig).

pomacancha_cuyIn Peru, South America the cuy (guinea pig) is not usually a lovable pet, but instead used for food or traditional home health research. Cuies are mainly raised for food and properly cared for.

Let us start off with cuy roasted over charcoal, served with french fried and salad, plus maybe a cold beer. Yummy. Usually the cuy is served with the head still attached. Not my favorite presentation, but you get accustomed to it. Young cuies are the best, because the meat is tender. An old cuy can be like chewing on a tire. The meat has a sweet taste about it.

Now home health research sacrifice. What is this? This is an old tradition of believing that if a member of the family is ill, then you can cut a cuy open to determine the ailment of your family member by studying the organs of a freshly culled cuy.

So here is how it works. A cuy is purchased and brought home. Then the live cuy is rubbed over the complete body of the sick person. The live cuy is then held by the sick person on their stomach for a minimum of two hours. Lets say the person could put it under their shirt close to their stomach.

The idea is what ever illness the person has is contagious to the cuy.

After the ritual is performed the cuy is killed and dissected by a family member or shaman to disclose where the illness is in the cuy. Thus if a illness is found in the cuy, then it is assumed that the same illness exists in the ill family member. Then an appropriate treatment can begin.
Sounds crazy to some, but many people swear that this works in Peru.

Dogs of Central America

Being a animal lover I was often shocked at the treatment of Dogs in Central America. Living in the USA you are so accustomed to seeing dogs living in homes and being pampered. Eventually you get callous to seeing dogs in rough shape and abused in Central America. Now I must add that not all dogs are treated bad. Many have loving homes, but travel in Central America and decide for yourself.

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Dirty side of the pharmaceutical industry.

Big Foot Travel Agency (San Pedro “Lago de Atitlan”, Guatemala)

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Big Foot is the original and only place to go for travel information in San Pedro, Guatemala on Lago de Atitlan. Juan the owner was born in San Pedro and knows everything that you could want to know about Lago de Atitlan. Juan has traveled the globe and is a very interesting person to talk to. So just stop in and say “hi.”  Big Foot can arrange volcano climbing, horseback riding, kayaking and etc…. You name it and Juan can arrange it!

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Cumberland Mountain State Park (Tennessee)

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They have a real nice restaurant with a great view of the lake. Catfish Fridays take you back to the days of Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer.

Come on over to Cumberland Mountain State Park and hangout with the geese.

 

 

 

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Banos, Ecuador

banos_ecuador_mountains

Located South of Quito, Ecuador about 3 ½ hours by bus, you will find the quaint town of Banos, Ecuador. Banos is famous for the thermal baths that are fed with volcanic hot water.

This is a nice travel destination in Ecuador, South America to visit for a week or two. Some people travel here and never leave. The climate is pretty good with warm to hot days and cool nights.

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Miraflores, Peru.

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After 3 months of living in the mountains and the jungles of Peru, it was a great treat to visit modern civilization. McDonalds and Duncan Donuts are located in Miraflores to extract your money from your wallet. Then you have all the fancy restaurants and cafes. Miraflores, Peru even has a giant grocery store with an overflowing bundle of goodies, waiting for you to snatch up.

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Moon Fish Cafe (San Marcos)

Located on the shores of Lago De Atitlan In (San Marcos)

For a great cup of coffee with a million dollar view stop by at the “Moon Fish Cafe”. Overlooking Lago De Atitlan you can get a cup of cafe con leche for 6 Q. Now I hear they do have good food. But since my meal today is of tomato’s from street vendor I can only say the Moon Fish Cafe has good coffee. I did hear a coffee grinder once I placed my order. So they use fresh beans.

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Hostel Trail (Popayan)

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Location: Cra 11, No. 4-16, Popayan, Colombia

Price: $8.00 USD (16,000 Pesos) for dorm, Single room no bath $14.00 USD (28.000 Pesos), Double room shared bath $20.00 USD (40,000 Pesos)… They have other options!

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Guacamole

I always buy double so I can make two meals out of it. If you don’t have a bowl cut a water bottle bottom off and use that. Buy some plastic spoons if desperate. Make sure you wash and dry everything. Use your plastic bag to prepare your food on if no cutting board available.You will need.

1 Avocado
1 large tomato (easier to peel skin off)
1 medium onion
1 lime
1 bag of tostadas

Not necessary but nice:

Salt, pepper and chile picante (spice it like you like it)

How to:
Add all this stuff to your bowl.

Cut avocado in half and scoop out the good stuff
Peel tomato and dice

Peel onion and dice
Cut lime in half and squeeze juice onto ingredientsMix all ingredients in your bowl and smear on tostada. Eat outside your room so you don’t get ants.

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Avocados rule !
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Memorial in Yungay, Peru of the 25,000 people who perished in the 1970 earthquake.

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On May 31st 1970 a massive earthquake caused a mud avalanche and flooding that buried the town of Yungay, Peru in 3 minutes. 25,000 people died at around 3:00 pm that fateful day.

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Hiking in the mountains above Yungay, Peru.

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If you happen to be in the neighborhood then I would suggest you do some hiking in Yungay, Peru!

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Humble house, grave marker and mural in Lago de Atitlan.

Exploring the village of San Pablo I was struck by this humble clay brick house with the little yellow basketball rim over the lone window. Laundry catching the morning sun to dry.

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Malecon 2000 in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

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The Malecon 2000 (Waterfront area that overlooks the Guayas River) in Guayaquil, Ecuador is definitely worth visiting. The area has been transformed into a very attractive place to stroll along the Guayas River, dine, sightsee and relax on a park bench.

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“Yacuruna” Alojamiento Rural (Yurimaguas)

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Price: 15-20 Sol (for single)

Location: on the river behind Parque Central (walk down the stairs.) Yurimaguas, Peru.
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This hostel is probably the quietest one you will find in Yurimaguas. Good location near the central park, markets and restaurants.

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Sunyata Boat Charters by Capt. Hank

Sunyata Sailing Trips By Capt. Hank

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I met Capt Hank in Guatemala for about 3 minutes. He is a strikingly handsome man. He told me he did Sailing trips in Honduras on his boat. I said “give me your business card and I will put a link to your site on my site.” Here it is. Looks like he has one hell of a boat. Check his website out.

http://www.sunyatacharters.com

The spirits of the mountains in Yungay, Peru.

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I knew there was something in front of me. It was not something I could touch. Tears flowed down my cheeks. Beautiful… as the surrounding mountains, she whispered in my ear.

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Ozone Falls in Ozone, Tennessee (USA)

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Now you must expect the unexpected in Ozone. My friend Beastie lives in Ozone and we decided to go hiking around the small town. If you are driving through be sure not to sneeze, because you might miss it. Heading east on route 70 the first thing that you come to in Ozone is the falls parking area on your right hand side. A quick walk leads you to the upper part of the falls. Beastie was telling me an old mill used to be located here. If you want to take the 15 minute hike to the bottom of the falls its probably smart to put on some good boots. The climb is rather steep and slippery. Many people swim in the small pool below the falls in the summer time. Beastie says watch out for water moccasins!

 

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Cooking with Peruvian clay pots and check out that awesome Peruvian potato.

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Well I am the proud owner of a Peruvian clay pot bought in a local market for about 15 Nuevo Soles. My girlfriend is used to cooking with these types of pots and it was something new to me. My first thought was, “it will probably break after the first meal.” But no, she tells me that they usually last for up to 3 to 4 months.

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