Heading Home! 30 miles from Honduras-El Salvador Border
El Amatillo Travel Blog› entry 44 of 57 › view all entries
Puma Station less than 30 miles from Honduras-El Salvador Border:
N13â€™ 26.371 / W87â€™27.074
Weâ€™re headed home! Here's how that transpired:
Ned arrived and we were thrilled! His one checked bag didn't make it (but now will be returned to Houston). We headed for
Got stopped by that damned Police scumbag! He instantly recognized fake id. I admitted it right away and showed real one, but wouldnâ€™t hand it over. He demanded for $20 US. I figured it was a good deal given the amount friends had to pay and that he had me on an infraction for using a color copy. So I basically threw the $20 at him, grabbed my fake id back, said, â€śGracias!â€ť and drove off without looking (while he was trying to ask for more $ for his partner).
Granada: Entering the city we experienced a Funeral crowd blocking the street, a motorcycle accident, difficult city driving with trash blowing everywhere. I cannot believe that "colonial jewel" is the best attempt at tourism for Nicaragua. Umm-um! I didn't go into Managua, the city, because the same guidebook said that was one of the most tourist-unfriendly places in the world. Maybe by comparison, Granada is nice. The Granada square could be nice because it has impressive architecture, but it wasn't pleasant at all when we drove through (and I now have a very high tolerance for a lower-standard of living). Not impressed with Grenada.
We made it to the Grenada Touristcentro Park (3km long) along the water of Lago de Nicaragua (the big body of water in Nicaragua). Paid 30 Cordoba to get in ($1.50) and tips to two vigilantes. Parked in large parking spot near lstreetights, backed up to a nice breeze off the water. Traffic continued through park until late. A little uncomfortable feeling.
Awoke early and had an idea: Head home with Ned! 5 minutes later, it was decided. I could not imagine putting him on a plane in Costa Rica without us and having to navigate that stressful territory back home. No thank you!
Before 8am, we drove back through difficult
We had to go right back by Masaya or go through Managua. Yuck! So we went a 4th time past the potential corrupt police stop. He was not there! Horray! However, different police did stop us about 3-4 times in
Border crossing into Honduras was easy! We used 2 different guides and they were helpful. Officials were nice. Copy of vehicle permit from
Stopped more by police, at least 4-5 times in
Other techniques when stopped by police:
1. Asked for directions: When they went to wave me over, I hesitated in the RV, rolled down the window, and asked nicely for directions, as if I was stopping them.and then I would say, â€śGracias,â€ť throw down the map and drive off.
2. Refused to go to side of road unless absolutely had to. Instead, I'd stop in road with them in front and blocked traffic. They would walk up to my window and talk from there. Sometimes they immediately directed me over, but that at least put me at the front of the line with access to leave.
3. Would act pleased to see them, compliment their country, apologize for "mi Espanol es malo," smile a lot, touch their arm when asking them to repeat, and other sickening charm in what is not a charming situation.
Very nerve-wracking and stressful day! Confirmed my desire to leave. People are nice but police are crooks. We are obvious targets. I drive and Ned lets me handle all police conversations, providing a complimentary score for the acting afterward.
Weâ€™re about 15 miles from the
Hope El Amatillo border goes okay. Nervous.
Canâ€™t wait to get home. Will kiss the ground!