Saturday, December 29, 2007

Cancún Christmas

So this was my Christmas and after...on the beach in Cancún. I love México, but Cancún does not in any way resemble the México that I love. It does have nice beaches, though, and I got to see one of the new wonders of the world, Chichen Itzá, along with its swarms of tourists. This reminds me of several points that I want to mention:
  1. Flying in Central America sucks. On the trip there, I had a flight from San Salvador to Guate, Guate to Flores, then Flores to Cancún. Note distances on map. Seriously, I could have driven to Guate faster than the nasty process of flying let me. On the way back, the flight was 2.5 hours late and I had to run to catch my next flight, after having circled around the city several times. This was also the flight where we were served the "leftovers" from the last trip. They didn't have any water. Which sucks, when you're sitting on the plane in Cancún with all the doors open for over an hour. But the amusing German couple sitting across from me (there was only 5 of us, plus the flight attendant) made it worth it. And the flight was almost $600...uggggggh Taca.
  2. I could not acquire Mexican food at the hotel. And anything in the hotel zone was expensive and not really what I was looking for. Is it too much to ask to have tortillas at every meal? I've been in Latin America too long, I think. But seriously, not even Christmas dinner was Mexican.
  3. Tour guides should not joke about giving tourist iguana for lunch. It's not that bad, and really, anything's good when you put picante and tortillas with it.
  4. It was still nice to see my parents!
When I go back to the Yucatán, I'd love to see all of the little places that a large tour bus would never take you to. Some day....

And this is the after part. I was in San Salvador for New Year's Eve. I'd been warned before that Salvadorans love to set off firecrackers and fireworks (cohetes), but did not really understand to what extent! My dislike for fireworks as a child has not changed...and here the fun part is that the dust and smoke in the aftermath makes it a little hard to breathe or see when you're driving your car. Just like a foggy morning in Northwest Ohio! And check out New Year's day sky...this is not a normal cloud!

Monday, December 17, 2007

My Christmas Cookies

I decided that in order to be more in the Christmas spirit this year I needed to make some cookies, cause it just doesn't feel like Christmas here when it's 85 degrees and sunny. Finding all the ingredients was a bit of a hassle, since according to what the grocery stores have, salvadoreños only cook things from a box. I had a hard time finding chocolate to bake with, a cookie sheet, and cookie cutter, among other things. But I had a fun time making them, and even more so giving them away!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Christmas 2007

This is the second year that I've gone with the Centro Cultural Salvadoreño Americano to deliver toys to various places. This year we went to the Hogar del Niño orphanage, Carcel de Mujeres, and to Centro Escolar Ochupse Arriba outside of Santa Ana. Toys, candy, and cookies are collected at CCS during the end of November and the beginning of December. It's been a lot of fun to dress up and go play with the kids, although a lot of them aren't sure what a M&M is. They like the big white hands, though! One of the teachers, Cecil, dresses up as Santa, and there's usually some clowns and other characters as well.

At C.E. Ochupse Arriba with Santa and Mr. Flamenco

With Santa

Beating up the pi

At the orphanage

Playing games at Hogar del Ni

Monday, December 10, 2007


Even though it's almost vacation time here, Edwin and I decided to take a little trip to Miramundo, on the El Salvador / Honduras border in Chaletenango. It's one of the few places that actually gets cooooooldddd in El Salvador (3° C at night while we were there). I could see my breath, which I thought was kind of funny. Most tourists seem to drink to keep warm, since there's no heat and most restaurants and such are open-air, which isn't so pleasant when you can't feel your toes! But the views make up for the cold. You can see all the volcanoes in the western part of El Salvador, and neat things like trees, flowers, and birds, which you don't see much of in San Salvador! We got there Saturday afternoon and took what was supposed to be a little walk to see where they grow veggies and strawberries, but the person who told us this was a 15 minute walk apparently forgot that walking and driving do not require the same amount of time. Hostal Miramundo, where we stayed, was cute but way too cold. The shower did indeed have hot water, but I couldn't bare to put my feet on the tile floor. I liked how Christmas dinner was roaming around in the yard (guinea hens and turkies, which are called chompipes). I'm half-tempted to buy a chompipe, park my car in the street for a while, and tie up my chompipe in my parking space until he's ready for dinner. I'm sure the neighbors would love that!

Sunday we went to see Rio S
umpul and a little waterfall (which was actually in Honduras), along with a veggie plantation. Although I enjoyed the trip overall, the lack of infrastructure in touristic places sometimes bothers me, especially since there's such a big movement to start promoting ES as a tourist destination. When we went to the river, the mini bus left an hour and a half after they said it would. That I'm used to. Our tour guide, however, dumped her trash along the path at the waterfall (not even in her own country, mind you), and let people cut wildflowers and pull up plants to take with them. I can forgive lateness, but the rest really bothers me.

We also had some "little" tour guides at the river--three 7 or 8 year olds who followed us around everywhere and pulled up plants for me that I then proceeded to hide again. They were quite cute and helpful. Overall, quite a nice escape from the noise and craziness of San Salvador at Christmastime!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Freezing in Central America

Last week I attended the national teachers conference hosted by the Instituto Guatemalteco Americano (another binational center kind of like Centro Cultural Salvadoreño, where I'm at). Guatemala is FREEZING in November and December, which was a bit of a surprise to me. I no longer own any closed-toe dress shoes, and was seriously regretting this, but it also got me in the mood to do my Christmas shopping, which I'm proud to say I'm almost finished with. The Christmas cooking is more of a problem, since no grocery store seems to stock all of the baking goodies I need. Semisweet chocolate and canned pumpkin have alluded me so far, but I found cream of tartar in Antigua (yes, little things like that make me happy). Antigua also gave me lots of yummy chocolates, some of which were supposed to be gifts, but which ended up in my stomach.

Anyways, this was an excellent conference, and I came back motivated to try out some new ideas, and having gained some advice and ob
servations on hosting a conference (ours at CCSA will be in July). I now know that you can make ice cream in ziploc bags with groups of over 250 teachers, that the number of Americans who adopt Guatemalan children and then stay at the Marriott hotel in Guatemala City is scary, and that there's lots of really neat people who travel around to present at these conferences. My sessions went well, and it was much easier having Internet access to talk about blogging.

I was also amazed that I could increase the amount of food that I ate, but lose weight at the same time. The difference between healthy food and food in El Salvador. Or maybe I frooze off the food. Guatemala is different in so many ways from El Salvador, even though Guate City is less than four hours away by bus, including the time that you get stopped at the border. When I got back, El Salvador was also a bit chilly, but not frigid!

National Pupusa Day

Sunday, November 11, in addition to being Veteran's Day, a Salvadoran day of remembrance marking the day in 1989 the fighting moved into the city, the day that the FMLN formally announced their presidential candidate for the 2009 elections (which I know because I'm about a half block away from the stadium where all this was happening and got to hear all the fireworks), was also National Pupusa Day. And November is national pupusa month, even though people eat them constantly, all year round.

In a workshop I gave on Monday in Santa Ana, I had teachers brainstorm and categorize all of the things you can put in pupusas. Here's their list:
  • Beans
  • Cheese
  • Chicharron
  • A mix of any of the above
  • Loroco (a flower)
  • Mora (some kind of leaf)
  • Chipilin (another kind of leaf)
  • Chicken
  • Ham
  • Ayote (a kind of squash)
  • Shrimp
  • Fish
  • Conchas
  • Tuna
  • Beef
  • Spinach
I can add green onions, garlic, plantains, and green pepper to the list, which I've tasted and/or seen in San Miguel. Tasty bits of goodness, but I'm still not sure how people can eat so many of them here! Once a week is more than enough for me.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Happy Halloween

This was our new supervisor, for two days of Halloween fun. He will soon become my very own pumpkin pie, since he cost $13 at PriceSmart.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Laguna de Olomega

This weekend we took a couple hours and went to see Laguna de Olomega, which is on the border between the departments of San Miguel and La Union. For $15, we got a tour around five of the islands and stopped at one of them to see some petroglyphs. To me, Olomega is much more worth seeing than Coatepeque and some of the other volcanic lakes, mostly because of the floating water plants and the birds. It also has pockets of boiling water, which is nifty as long as you don't have to get close to it. There was tasty lake tilapia for lunch, swimming pigs, friendly locals, and really adorable little kids, which makes all the difference!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

NicaTESOL Trip

I just got back from yet another conference trip, this time to Managua, Nicaragua to NicaTESOL. It was a fun 8 or 9 hours in the car. Going down, there was supposed to be a lot of bad weather from hurricane Felix, none of which I ever saw. I also saw the actual end of a rainbow for the first time in my life. On an amusing note, we were stopped a good 7 times by the police in Honduras, and maybe another 3 times in Nicaragua, just on the way there. My personal favorite was when they threatened to take the driver's license away because he had no car insurance, which apparently really is a law in Nicaragua. I want to know how many Nicaraguans have car insurance, though, or if it's just for foreigners. I also saw lots of fun animal crossing signs: snake, cow, armadillo, iguana, small child, and best of all, a large unidentified rodent that kind of looked like a sloth.

I stayed in the Los Robles area with another friend from work, had some good Korean food, watched other people's faces as they tried sushi for the first time, and yes, went grocery shopping (every other Central American country has a better selection of international import food items than El Salvador, like Craisans). I also spent the whole time limping around UCA with my jellyfish wound, which was/is amusing and painful at the same time. People were soooooo nice there, though, and really helped a lot! Managua was hot, but not that bad, and once you get used to the fact that the streets don't have names (or if they do, they're not written on the streets), it's not so bad. On Saturday we went to Masaya, about 30 km south of the city, and with a much more pleasant climate, where I bought some nice painting and eyed the hamacas that I have no where to put at this point. Next time...

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Bolas de fuego in Nejapa

This would have been fun to go to, had I known about it beforehand. Where else do people throw flames at each other and end up on fire?!

Read a more about it on this guy's blog.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

The art of unlocking cell phones

Before I left for vacation, I'd already decided that it was time to upgrade to a better cell phone (not made of cheap plastic and that might actually have a signal while I'm at work). My dream was to have a gsm phone that I could have a US carrier SIM card for, and then just buy a chip in El Salvador. I went all over (Findlay, Detroit, Cincinnati, DC, if you can consider that "all over") and found that pretty much all phones are sold "locked" to a certain carrier. Everyone said to check e-Bay. Not enough time for that. I found one place in Cinti, a half hour before it closed, that said they could unlock a phone for me for a certain cost. Oh well. I resigned myself to the fact that I would have to buy a phone in El Salvador.

So, I went to Tigo, and found a phone I liked at a price I liked, but due to the confusing nature of my job and were I'm paid, I didn't have all the documents that they needed. Okay. Then a friend found a friend that he hadn't seen for a while that works at Digicel, another carrier here. I am now the proud owner of a Motorola PDA/phone, for a mere $40 a month, on only a 12 month contract.

How can this be??!! US carriers always wanted me to sign a 2-year plan, with a phone that I can't use with any other service. I remember those unhappy days of having a Sprint phone. And this Digicel phone, while locked, can be taken on a short trip to see unlocking "professionals" downtown, and can then be used with any carrier. So I can buy a $1 SIM card when I go to Nicaragua next week, if I go back to Colombia I can use my card from there, and wonder of all wonders, can get a chip the next time I'm back in Ohio and use a pre-paid service.

This article in the NY Times this morning talks about some teen that figured out a way to unlock the iPhone so that you don't have to have a contract with AT&T. Seems fair, being that maybe I'd rather stick with T-Mobile or Verizon. And for me, it's not that I don't want the Digicel plan. It's that roaming is expensive and I'm traveling enough to feel like I need a way to call if my car catches on fire in the middle-of-nowhere Honduras and I'm not brave enough to put it out with my handy fire extinguisher.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Back in San Sal

I've been back in San Salvador for a week now, starting my second tour as an English Language Fellow. Our pre-departure orientation in Washington DC was a bit tiring, but good. The airport bit was the most fun...the itinerary I had printed said Dulles, but the flight was actually out of Reagan. So, two taxi rides and $110 later (also discovered that in Virgina they're giving $3,000 speeding tickets and that many people have the same Dulles/Reagan problem), I find out that there's also an embargo on all flights on Delta inbound to San Salvador and Quito, Ecuador. At this point I'm very glad I hadn't bought more books! Note that the person at the check-in counter was very nice and understanding...told me that not even they knew there was an embargo until very recently.

You'd think that Delta would care enough to email you or something. I just searched on their website to see if there was any notices posted, but only found info from 2005. Why an embargo? Apparently everyone brings overweight baggage or an extra piece, so now no one is allowed to do either, even if you pay. Going out of San Sal is not so bad...the only extra baggage comes in the form of fried chicken (really).

But, I got back to San Sal only a little cranky, and with all my baggage, which made me happy. And I have my apartment back again, which was a relief after a long time feeling like I had no home. There were some nice additions made...I now have a toaster and a microwave and another tv, which has more than one fuzzy channel on it! And I found a rolling pin yesterday, which means I can now make is indeed good.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Rest areas of the eastern states

I miss rest areas, really. Driving from Ohio to DC, I saw even had a nice museum connected to it, along with walking trails! My only regret is that I didn't take the free maps; they would have been useful for teaching. On another note, the day when GPS maps take road construction into account will be a happy one. My six hour trip turned into a nine hour one, but I guess I shouldn't be that surprised.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Parque Nacional El Imposible

I took a two day trip to El Imposible National Park before heading back to Ohio on was a nice escape from San Salvador.

El Imposible is one of the few natural areas in the country, possessing the most species of plants and animals of any one place here. I didn't get to see any of the animals or birds this time around, other than lots of butterflies, mosquitos, and spiders, but it was truly a beautiful place. I also like Hostal El Imposible, the first eco-anything I've seen here.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Boquerón 1 & 2, and Cerro Verde

Finally, after almost a year of being here, I got to go up (at least part of the way) the volcano in San Salvador. Maybe halfway up is a town/area called El Boquerón, also the name of the crater at the top. I went to a going away party at Café El Volcan one day, then a couple of days later went to have lunch at Café Miranda and to see Café San Fernando. Too bad all of San Salvador can't be so nice!

And then, last weekend I went to Cerro Verde, part of Parque Nacional Los Volcanes, with a friend. Beautiful, but unfortunate, since pretty much everything I wanted to see was covered in fog. It's actually an old volcano (last errupted some 25,000 years ago), even though cerro means hill in Spanish. The park also includes the Santa Ana volcano, called Ilamatepec, which is active now, and a very nice conical-shaped volcano called Izcalco.

Here's my pictures...enjoy!

El Boquerón and Cerro Verde

Guatemala Trip

I’ve been out and about a lot lately. From June 28 to July 8, I took a work/fun trip to Guatemala. I was traveling with one of the other ELFs, her husband, and another one of the presenters from the conference that I went to. In all, Guatemala was a little bit disappointing, after having heard so much about it for so long. Yes, the places were naturally beautiful, but the vendors in the street were just as bad as Colombia, which was unexpected and certainly unwanted after a year in El Salvador, where the only time people try to get me to buy something is when I’m in my car stopped at a red light. I was also surprised at how beautiful parts of Guatemala City are, after having heard it was a bit ugly. Ten times better than San Salvador (sorry El Salvador, but really, you could plant some more trees and flowers). Maybe that’s because there’s still trees left there.

The bus only took about 4 hours from San Sal to Guate (yea, Pullmantur, with its first-class leather seats and champagne), and had a very tasty Thai-fusion lunch at a place called Tamarindo’s. I think the real highlight of the whole trip was the food...we ate at a large quantity of yummy restaurants. In a whole year in El Salvador, I’ve only once had food at a place that I knew I’d really want to go back to again (Bahia de Juiquilisco, Puerto El Triunfo). San Salvador, why do you not have tasty food? You have good food, but not mouth-watering, ever. In Antigua, we had dinner at a place called El Mesón Panza Verde, which was excellent, and some very yummy chocolate from Chocotenango. I’d go back to Antigua in a minute, more for the food than anything else. In Panajachel, Lake Atitlán was as beautiful as they say it is. We went on a boat trip to three of the towns on the banks of the lake: San Marcos La Laguna, San Pedro La Laguna, and San Antonio Palopó . In Xela, there was a good tapas place that I don’t remember the name of now.

Most of the time I was in Guatemala I was in Xela, where I presented on using drama in the language classroom at the Regional Conference for Teachers of English at the Instituto Guatemalteco Americano (IGA). Overall, a good trip, and yes, I would go back.

Questions that linger in my Guatemala as dangerous as Salvadorans make it out to be? Don’t know. By the end of my stay, I felt like I could have driven to Xela without problems, but maybe that’s my innocent self. The roads don’t even compare to the quality of those in El Salvador, so I think my biggest fear would be having some mechanical problem out in the middle of nowhere (there’s a lot more out in the middle of nowhere than in El Salvador).

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Another Nice Volcano View, and My Rant on Maps

I'm not really sure which volcano this could be the backside of San Miguel's, or it could be Usulutan's, or it could be some other random one that doesn't show up on any of my crappy maps.

Speaking of that, I think that I should draw my own map of El Salvador, since none of them seem to have all the roads on them, and since people are particularly great at giving directions. For example, last Friday I was in Gotera with Jose, just driving through on the way to Perquin. Only that driving through didn't turn out to be that easy, since nothing is marked. We asked at least five people, which left us going the wrong way on a one-way street by the market. And then a police officer sees us going the wrong way on this one-way street, but he turns out to be one of my former students whose name I could never pronounce right, and just laughs and gives us actual directions. Then, later on, we were asking people how long it takes to get from Gotera to Cacaopera (which we knew was only about 9 kms away), and we heard everything from 30 minutes to 2 hours. It took about 15 minutes. Hmmmmm.....
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Saturday, June 23, 2007


Finally, a nice picture of the San Miguel volcano! Still need to climb it, though. Maybe once it's not rainy season anymore.
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Thursday, June 21, 2007

Last Day!

Not really. I haven't gotten much of my wrap-up work finished yet, and I'm still going to be "working" through the end of July. But I can now technically say no and not feel bad too about it at all.

I've opened up a new Yahoo! 360°account...don't like it much other than the fact it automatically links to friends that you invite, which is kind of fun.

Off to Guatemala next week to travel with Cristyn and go to another conference in Xela at the Instituto Guatemalteco Americano branch there (which I have to say I always want to pronounce like this. Then back to try to find an apartment again in San Salvador.

And a trip to Perquin to see the museum and swim in the Rio Sapo tomorrow. Hopefully the roads won't kill anything else on my car.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

ELF Highlights: Fellows Joining Forces in El Salvador

From June 6 - 9, Fellows Allyson Kellum (Honduras) and Erin Lowry (El Salvador) teamed up to present workshops for teachers and professors in three locations in El Salvador: San Miguel, Santa Ana, and San Salvador.

The workshop in San Miguel drew public and private school teachers and Peace Corps volunteers to learn about interaction in the classroom. It combined theory with activities the participants could take into their classrooms. One teacher reported using one of the activities with his class a few hours after the workshop, excited by how successful it was!

In Santa Ana, a group of professors, teachers, and Peace Corps volunteers gathered to improve skills and techniques geared towards promoting communication in the classroom. This included questioning strategies, using drama, and a collection of interactive activities. Although shy at first, the group opened up and participated unabashedly by the time drama was introduced and practiced.

Three workshops were held in San Salvador. The first was attended by teachers and was based on "Teaching Jazz Chants to Young Learners," which is produced by the Office of English Language Programs with the help of Carolyn Graham. In the beginning, many teachers struggled with the rhythm of English, but with explanations and practice throughout the workshop, improvement was made. Participants had the opportunity to practice chants and to create and present their own chants.

The second workshop in San Salvador covered the same topic as in San Miguel, interaction. Again, it received positive feedback from the participants, and consisted of public and private school teachers, instructors from the binational center, and university professors.

The last workshop was for public school teachers who had been attending a methodology training course funded by the Embassy; many of the participants were in the first workshop and had traveled to San Salvador for the workshop and graduation ceremony from the training course. The workshop was geared specifically towards some of these particular teachers’ weaknesses, based on Fellow Erin Lowry's feedback from the course and observations of the participants' classes. Participants enjoyed Fellow Allyson Kellum's demonstration of how scaffolding can be used to communicate the meaning of a children's song with drawings and gestures, instead of translations into the Spanish. In addition to the song and scaffolding techniques, they also learned about eliciting, presenting new vocabulary, and classroom language.

The results of the cooperation between the Fellows and Embassies of the respective countries— educators were able to share what they know with others, gain insight into the theory behind teaching, and take several activities directly into their classes. The majority of participants expressed a desire to learn more, a need recognized and already being discussed by the Fellows and Embassies.

Participants: 195

Click here to read other highlights from the field...

Monday, May 28, 2007

Honduras, ¡que macanudo!

Last Wednesday, I headed to Tegucigalpa, Honduras for yet another conference for language teachers at the Universidad Pedagógica Nacional Francisco Morazán. I presented on blogging in the language classroom again. Other than that, though, it was a fairly eventful trip.

I had to pay my first bribe to police ever, for not having a fire extinguisher and the organge triangle things in my car. Our conversation went something like this:

Police guy: "Do you have all the tools you need to repair your car with you?"
Me: "Yeah, they're in the back."
Police guy: "Show me."
I get out of the car and show him the spare and the jack.
Police guy: "Where's your fire extinguisher?"
Me: "What fire extinguisher?"
Police guy: "What will you
do if your car's on fire?"
Me: "Run the other way and hope it doesn't explode."
Police guy: "What about a cone or triangle? What will you do if you get a flat?"
Me: "Change the tire on the side of the road."
Police guy: "What if the car stops in the middle of the road? How will you get the traffic to stop?"

And so on. I was thinking, 'the traffice wouldn't stop even if my car was blocking the whole road, so what does it matter if I have a traffic cone?! They'd just run me over! And isn't it dangerous to carry a fire extinguisher in the car...couldn't it explode?!' He threatened to take my liscence from me, which
didn't matter much to me, since I have my US liscence, too. And then asked for money.

I just about threw my back out
again carrying my laptop around on Friday, which meant I didn't get to go to the cloud forest on Saturday, which was disappointing. I did go to Valle de Angeles, a cute little town maybe 45 minutes from the capital. I think I visited at least eight grocery stores in Tegus looking for various foreign food products that I haven't been able to find in San Sal: canned pumpkin for November, various Thai spices and sauces, and so on. Tasty soy milk. Water chestnuts. Bamboo shoots. Yum yum. All the countries I've visited this year have a much much much better grocery selection compared to El Salvador, which means I come back with pickled chilis instead of souvenirs in my suitcase.

The weekend ended with another trip to Ojojona, which has a fabulous climate and more cute things to buy that I'm not sure how I'd ever pack to take home. I bought an anafre for 40 lempiras (next to nothing). You put hot coals in the bottom half to melt cheese or beans on top for a tasty snack. There was a stop in Santa Ana for pupusas (yes, Salvadorans, pupusas are just about as popular in parts of Honduras as they are in El Salvador, and they're just as tasty).

On the way back, I took a wrong turn (not my fault, wasn't marked) and ended up in Choluteca, not far from the border with Nicaragua. Oops! Even with all the random craziness, I still really like Honduras. Besides the groceries, the people are wonderful and the culture has some of the aspects that I'm still missing from life in Caribbean Colombia. Just the music in itself made me want to stay for a while longer...

They Came, They Toured, They Offended

On no longer limiting the term "ugly American" to American tourists. Check it out...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Flor de Izote

Not many countries have an edible national flower, but El Salvador happens to be one of them. Izote, which is a type of yucca, provides tasty goodness in pupusas or with scrambled eggs. Beyond that, I don't think they're used for much, but they sure are pretty!

Monday, May 21, 2007

La ruta de las flores

Some of my favorite places so far in El Salvador are on what's known as la ruta de las flores. This Saturday, I went to Juayua to eat at the weekend food festival, and then on to Apaneca to visit another waterfall, close to a hotel appropriately called La Cascada. It's started to rain again, so there were actually some flowers on the roadside this time. I also saw a monkey that was not in a cage, a first for my time in El Salvador. It was hanging out in a tree on the path down to the waterfall. It's too bad that the country has been completely stripped of its vegetation for the most part; I can't even imagine what it must have been like here a hundred years ago, or even fifty. About 4:30 the fog started to roll in. San Miguel is such a drastic change from these places!

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Beach of the Week #2

Los Cobanos, located in the western part of the country in the department of Sonsonate, was the first beach I was at this week. This one was actually for "work"; there was a Fulbrighters conference there at a resort called Los Veranderos. The beach was not so nice...small, lots of rocks, pieces of jellyfish, etc. Back in the fall, the resort had built a breakwater, which proceeded to damage the reef there.

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Beach of the Week #1

El Espino, located in the deparment of Usulutan, is supposedly the most beautiful beach in El Salvador (at least according to my Let's Go book). It was certainly pretty, but I think what I enjoyed most is that it wasn't crowded.

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