Skip to main content

San Salvador, hear the voices ringing, people singing...

What do you do when you have a 21 hour layover in San Salvador, El Salvador? Spend it at the airport? Of course not! You get out and discover a place that, while not on most folks’ bucket list, surely has a lot to offer. Granted, there were some practical considerations. Could I get a visa at the airport and explore? –yes, for a $12 fee. Should I rent a car in a city ranked by the Economist as having the highest per-capita homicide rate in the world (excluding war zones)? –no, tempting as the $15 daily rate was, I didn’t want to drive to the wrong side of town end end-up dead. Could I leave my carry-on bags somewhere at the airport? –no, unfortunately there are no lockers. The solution came in the form of Julio César, my Über driver who agreed to show my son and I the sites for $50, plus gas. It was amazing! Sure we had a false start. La Puerta del Diablo (the Devil’s gate), our first stop, had been closed for remodeling for a year, so all we saw were some zinc sheets meant to keep people out. After that, things got better! San Salvador volcano, a short hike to the edge of a deep crater with a cool-looking circular feature at the bottom of the chasm (known as el Boquerón). The views from the rim were amazing and our ten year old tour guide wasn’t bad either (after school he makes some spending cash by tagging along tourists and making conversation –so spare me your child labor quips). While my panoramic picture below doesn’t do it justice (I didn’t have a drone to take a picture like this), trust me it was humbling seeing this artifact of the 1917 eruption that devastated San Salvador.

We saw the statue of Cristo Salvador del Mundo (Christ the Redeemer of the World), the Cathedral, Presidential Palace, National Theater and old(ish) town (the city was last destroyed in 1917, so it’s not as old as other places on the map).

We drove through streets where pedestrians, motorcycles, cars and busses intermingled in a chaotic choreography that might give American drivers the willies. We posed with Oscar Romero, the city’s iconic archbishop who was murdered in the 1980s for speaking-out.

And we ate –boy did we eat! Pupusas, of course. Loroco (an edible flower), ayote (Salvadoran pumpkin), jalapeño and bean pupusas. Relleno de Güiskil (an amazing casserole made with an eggplant-like plant in the pumpkin family that tastes sort-of like green tomato),  Nuégados (fried yucca dough served with syrup), plantain everything (made into a cake, a canoe or fried), Rigua (a sweetish, sourish, thick corn tortilla) and Atol (a corn-based drink). My one regret, not having stopped at Mister Donut to bring you all some donuts (I have no excuse, really, the sign says it’s open 24 hours!).

Now, I realize some of you may confuse El Salvador (the country I visited Tuesday) with Ecuador (the country where I spent a good chunk of the summer). Next week I will attempt to remedy that by compiling some photos from my trip to Ecuador. Meanwhile, enjoy your day!
Happy Friday!


Stephen said…
I loved my trip to El Salvador! I ate at a restaurant partway up the volcano. They told me the view was amazing, but the rain was coming down so hard we couldn't see anything. The food was amazing there and everywhere I ate my whole trip.

Popular posts from this blog

Ashes to Ashes

  Friends, I don’t know about you, but my household tends to use things a tad beyond their reasonably useful life. Cars, razors, pillows... heck, we squeezed the last BTU out of our home’s 25 year old thermostat —15 years is for rookies. This week we bid our fire pit farewell. Structurally unstable and rusted to the core, this contrivance was well on its way to returning to the soil. Memories of s’mores, cigars and shared spirits come rushing back, as does the six foot tall cardboard peach burned atop it, which caused the first stress fractures in the waning days of 2019. Good times! I suppose nothing lasts forever, but memories can add a sense of permanence to the fleeting. So go, grab a donut and make some new memories!! Happy Friday!

To an end to Covid Games

  Friends, As 2021 comes to an end, it’s time to remember and be grateful for another year of life – there’s much for which to be grateful. Sure, some things could have gone better (they always can), but on balance things were good. At the González household, the cathartic process of capturing this year’s essence to burn at midnight is wrapping-up. This year’s theme, “Covid Games from home” uses Squid games (Netflix’s unlikely breakaway hit) as a way to mock the two main Covid variants of concern (Delta and Omicron) and commiserate about working from home with all the weirdness it carries along. Comfy slippers combined with dressing-up from the waist up for zoom meetings (not to mention the quarantine fifteen). As I hope for lots of snow and no wind (lest we need to call an audible on the midnight burn) my thoughts turn to my friends in Boulder county and hopes for a quick recovery. May 2022 bring an end to confinement and lots of opportunities to share donuts. Happy Friday!

BIrds of a Feather

Friends, The early bird catches the worm, however, as the sun rises I’d much rather have a Denver omelet than a diet of worms . Ready to fly the coop, my ducks all in a row, I ponder one more time whether a bird in hand is truly worth two in the bush. Egged-on by my quest to tuck away a nest egg, I’ve decided to change industries and hope that, like the phoenix, my career will also rise from the ashes of change. After all, I’m no spring chicken –my crow’s feet and gray bely my age – however, I have to trust my judgment and believe you can’t catch this old bird with chaff (whether or not folks think me an odd bird for my actions). And so I shall attempt to soar like an eagle, aware that counting my chickens before they hatch would be ill-advised. As I learn to talk turkey in the language of cybersecurity, I will endeavor not to hide my head in the sand, choosing instead to be like a duck – calm on the surface and paddle like hell underneath! And while my excessive use of bird-inspired