Friday, June 12, 2015

4/17/86, Thursday

4/17/86, Thursday

Carelia with friends at the march against the $100 million.

Yesterday, the U.S. was expected to vote on the $100 million dollars that Ronald Reagan is trying to get in Contra aid. The money would be used to train and arm the counter-revolutionaries. Congress had voted against this before but Reagan is a man on a mission. The Sandinistas planned nationwide demonstrations with each town staging their own events. Esteli's march was comparatively small. The city of Leon put on a huge march, it was very impressive. It was in all the papers.

Even though it was a protest/peace march, the spirit was not somber or angry. People were having fun. It seemed like the whole town showed up carrying banners, flags, even handwritten signs scratched on notebook paper with repeated pencil marks. We chanted and sang songs and walked until our feet ached. In fact, Audrey and I decided to take a shortcut and sit at the park for a few minutes until the marchers came around again, then we quickly rejoined them, hoping no one noticed!

After walking to the school and back in the morning, then walking to the Salvadoran collective after lunch, and then participating in the march in the early evening, I was ready to put my feet up. Instead, Francie invited us to a party 25 blocks away. The party was another opportunity to notice how conversation is at the center of Nicaraguan social life.  Even the younger people start talking and when they're fully engaged you can almost feel the connection between them. It seems that people here haven't lost the art of conversation; sometimes I think that there can be more intimacy in a good talk than in a good fuck. Didn't someone once say that the biggest sex organ is the human brain? I have to agree. Why am I thinking about sex so much lately? Oh yeah, because I'm not getting any.

I'm looking forward to going to Leon this weekend. I was hoping that Audrey and I could pool our money and hire a driver for the day but everyone is telling us that it's just as easy and much cheaper to hitchhike. Audrey wants us to take the bus but I don't want to spend three and a half hours on one of those overcrowded buses. They usually have people hanging out the doors and windows, and sometimes even riding on the roof hanging onto the luggage racks. There’s a person whose job it is to squeeze people in. I can just imagine "ok, you move over there, you stand here, and you sit on the luggage rack and you can hang off the ladder."  I don't want to do it. I've heard horrible things about bus rides in this country. Hitching is very common and a reasonable alternative. We see hitchhikers everyday. In fact, it's considered patriotic to share your ride because fuel is so scarce.

There's plenty of room on top!

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