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Our Week On the Beach

Tans are coming along nicely.

sunny 30 °C

So, you've probably noticed we didn't blog or contact anyone at home for about a week. Well, thats because we spend a week on a remote beach. So this blog is gonna be a day by day of what exactly happened (if I can remember it all).

Day 1:

Arrived at the beach, called Playa El Zonte, we acutally got off the bus at what seemed like the middle of nowhere. Fortunately there was a road there, and we walked down it. This is when we saw the first other white people in El Salvador, it was actually a nice change, as we had been getting some minor hostilities in the big city (San Salvador).
Upon arrive (at the actual beach) we found the place we wanted to stay at very easily. The next thing of the agenda was to find someone to give us surf lessons. After asking around, we came back to our hotel, and asked one of the other surfers staying there. He suggested we talk to Alex, the guy who owned the place we were staying at. At the time Alex was out, but as soon as we got back we ambushed him. He said the surf was too big that day, so we had to at least wait till the next day. I forgot to mention, we went for a swim (in the big surf), and we lost the room key, probably less than an hour after it was given to us. Luckily there was another copy of the key. We ate at our hotel, then went to bed after some cards (I think thats how it went down). There were only 2 single beds in our room, so I volunteered to sleep on the floor all week (I know, I'm a saint).

Day 2:

Leigh woke up uber early to see a sunrise (5:00 am), I opted not to because I didn't sleep too well due to extreme heat and the whole sleeping on the floor thing. Uh, lets see, what'd we do today, we ate breakfast right at our hotel. Wait, I gotta take a moment to describe this place. It has a main house-like building with the bathrooms, and the bedrooms, a tv slash surf board room. Then outside, there is a hut, with all the tables for the restuarant, and many hammicks (I love hammicks). Just beside the hut was a pool (mostly for washing salt water off of people and boards). Near the pool was the bar slash restuarant ordering place, which had a set of stairs on the outside to a hangout spot on the top of it, which was probably one of the best places to eat, and it had another 4 hammicks.
Anywhoo.. back to the day. After breakfast, we were informed by Alex that the surf was still too big, so instead of surfing, we went for another swim in the big surf, this time with nothing in our pockets. It was a lot of fun, I swollowed quite a bit of seawater. We didn't do too much else that day; we found a restuarant that sells burgers for $1.50, and went for a walk down the beach. We had dinner at our hotel (Leigh and I downed 5 burgers with a side of fries with each one), after leigh and I did a exploration mission of the restuarants on the beach. Another night on the floor for me.

Day 3:

Woke up, I think we all woke up at some normal time (except for me, cause I was on the floor). We had breakfast at the nice cheap restaurant right on the beach. The prices were like $0.35 US for a pancake, which was a huge hit with Leigh. I believe Ryan and Leigh had pancakes, while I had eggs and pancakes (not completely sure). The next thing on the schedule was to find out if we could get some lessons on this day. Alex was around, and he said we could do some lessons that afternoon. I believe we spent some of the morning looking for shells, then we lazed in the hammicks for a while. Then we ate lunch, but I can´t recall where, maybe at our hotel, but probably at the cheaper restaurant (I think we had a $10 credit from the morning, cause they couldn´t break our $20 bill, so that was a neat feeling, it felt like a free meal). After lunch we probably played cards and then lied in the hammicks (I know, our lives are very hard) until about 3:30, which is when we got ready for our first surf lesson at 4.
Ah, yes, the surf lesson, what fun. Alex took us a ways down the beach, partly because the currents were lessened there, and there was fewer rocks (I guess he figured we´d be falling a lot). The first thing he did was give us a spiel on what the surfboards were not. They are not sun umbrellas (they don´t like sun), they are not seats (if you get sand in the wax, you will get a terrible rash when you lie down on them), there was a couple other things, I can´t remember, oh well. Then he made outlines of our boards in the sand, and made us practice the procedure for standing up on the board. It seemed pretty easy, and we were soon in the white water (which is whats left of the wave after its broken, they are about 1 foot to 6 feet in height, so some of them are really moving). We were supposed to wait for a big white water, then jump onto our boards and forward in the water, when the white water would catch us, and we´d be flying along. After about a dozen times, and a few tips from Alex, I was standing up on the board with about a 80% success rate. I´d like to say I was the first to stand up on the board, but I´m not really sure, so I won´t. Soon, we were heading back down the beach to the hotel, and we had a quick lesson in the pool, about how to turn the board around quickly in the water. Soon, we had discovered that our two hours were up (time flies when you are being washed up upon shore), and we each owed Alex $20 (well worth the mone I think). Alex then said we could do the next lesson on the next day. We were all fairly tired, but I think this was the night we had a few beers, ryan broke a ping pong paddle (oh ya.. there was a ping pong table there too, pretty intense games) but chucking it at the table. After Ryan repaired the paddle, and I went for a cool-down swim, we headed to bed.

Day 4:

I´m awake early again, and I think that Ryan tried to get up and watch the sunset, but he was back in bed fairly soon after he got up, apparently it was cloudly.. ya.. whatever Ryan. I was up fairly early, so I read some surfing magazines until the restaurant opened, then ordered a breakfast of Granola con Leche and a jugo de piña (both very good). Soon Ryan and Leigh were up, and we went and asked Alex about the lesson this day. He said he was heading to San Salvador, but would be back somewhere around 3 or 4 in the afternoon, and would be able to give us a lesson then. We took the boards out that morning to go practice what we learned the day before. Unfortunately Leigh broke a fin on his board somewhere on the way to our practice location, so he couldn´t practice, but Ryan and I got a good little session in. We did it until we got bored of doing just the same thing over and over, and until we felt like we´d have had enough sun. Then we ate lunch (somewhere, most likely at the cheap place, well, cause its cheap), and lazed around in the hammicks, waiting for Alex´s return.
Unfortunately, Alex never returned.. DUN DUN DUNNNNN! (until the next day). So we never got a lesson on our 4th day on the beach. Instead, we took another intense swim in the ocean, then lazed in the hammicks (again). After dinner (nothing memorable) we went to bed, and I spent another night on the floor.

Day 5:

We woke up at a normal time, I actually slept fairly well, better than other nights, but I was still up first, at around quarter after 6. I read some more surfing magizines (in english, else I would just be looking at pictures) until the other two were up. We had breakfast (somewhere), and lazed around a bit (we did that a lot) we probably played some cards, maybe some ping pong. It was just before noon when Alex got back, we figured something bad had happened so we didn´t bother him right away. We instead went for another hunt for shells. When we got back we talked to him. Apparently, he got a super painful ear infection while in San Salvador. He had to drive around all night, trying to find a doctor. He said it was a miracle cause he found one at 4 am. So when he got back, he was very tired, and on a lot of painkillers. He also wasn´t allowed to surf because of the infection. In his words: ´´No surf, I know, it sucks´´. But he still said he´d be able to another lesson with us the next day, as long as he was careful. It was quite funny when he describe what the pain was like. (Warning, this is about to get a little PG-13 on all of you) He said ´´It was like, like, someone was sticking, uh, a.. a penis in my ear.´´ We all got a good laugh out of that. So we planned to have a lesson the next morning. His words ´´Be ready to go at 7:30´´. The rest of the day is a blur, sorry guys, I just can´t remember.

Day 6:

I woke up really early (5:30) to go for a private walk on the beach and watch the surf for a while. I wrote something in the sand, took a few pictures, and watched the surf engulf the rocks I was standing on. A very beautiful morning overall. After at least an hour on the beach alone, I headed back to the hotel. The guys wanted to woken up at 7 to get ready for the lesson. I woke them up by taking a nice sepiatone picture of them sleeping (with flash of course). They were soon up and ready to go. Alex didn´t make an appearance until 7:20, which was when his breakfast was served to him, after his breakfast, we expected he would come over and talk to us, but instead, he started a nap on the floor. We all thought (or at least I did), ´´We´ve got all day, whatever, maybe he didn´t get a good sleep.´´ Then he was up again, and drinking coffee. Thats when he said his first words of the day to us, which were ´´Hey guys, I´m still hungry, so you should probably get breakfast.´´ So we did. We ate breakfast at our hotel, and when we finished, we found Alex napping on the floor again. We didn´t get out on the waves until about 9:30, meh, whatever.
This lesson was a bit different, we were catching bigger waves slash whitewater, and we weren´t jumping onto the board, we started on the board and caught waves by paddling. We were also learning how to turn, but he told us it is a lot easier ´´in a real wave, instead of this whitewater crap.´´ It lasted about an hour and a half. He said we´d do some actual surfing later that day, out on the point, (catch some pointbreaks). Unfortunately, he headed back into San Salvador that day, and didn´t get back till about 8 at night, so we didn´t get another lesson. We ended up eating lunch at the cheap place right after the lesson. I had a fried beef, it was weak at best, but whatever. Again, the rest of the day is a blur of lying in hammicks mixed in with some cards and ping pong. Had dinner, and went to bed in good time, we had an early morning (sorta) the next day.

Day 7:

Woke up at about 6, packed up and were on the road at a little after 7. We said goodbye to the beach, goodbye to surfing (for now), and caught the first bus back to town.

I hope that is detail enough for you guys, you are probably all chomping at the bit, waiting for the information on the week where we weren´t in contact, so here it is.

Take it easy,



Posted by iamcraig88 15:27 Archived in El Salvador Tagged ecotourism

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Dear Craig, Thanks for the blow-by-blow description of your days - sounds like a hard life!!!
Glad to speak with you on the phone -you sound strong and well!!! Glad you guys are getting along well and managing everything.
Looking forward to your next installment - keep well Mom

by kbryan

you guys must have it pretty tough ;) all this "I can't remember" you haven't been smokin up with the locals have you? well, time to look at some of those pictures (you guys posted like 260 pic's) I dont think I can tackle all that in one night, but I'm gonna try!


by superjames

heyy Craig
how are you?
thanks for the info....surfing sounds sooo fun! i'm gonna wanna hear a lot about that when you get back okay. glad you guys are having so much fun!
well i'll tty

by lor56

Glad to hear your detailed account of the 'good life'. This is the time to spend on a beach, catch'in waves and generally learning the fine are of hammick time!! - play safe. Cory

by coribel

Hi Craig
I think I put a message in error on Ryan's comments. So I will write another. It is so nice to read about your travels. Hope you are taking lots of pictures. Don't forget to get yourself in the pictures. I even tell Nana and Papa what you are up to. Sounds like you are having a hard life down there. How come you always have to sleep on the floor???!!!
Well stay safe and have fun, love Aunt Jane

by janegobet

Hi Craig,
Great to hear about your travels and your life experiences. If your sleeping on the floor try using the Thermarest and blow it up quite hard-that works for me. Went for a snowshoe today, probably one of the last as it is to be fairly warm all week. Congrats on your scuba certification. I really enjoyed the bit of diving I did before my ears forced me to quit.
Safe travels. Let us know how you get along in Nicaragua, it is probably the country that concerns me the most.
PS. I just happened a patient was cleaning out some old books and gave me 3 interesting books,one being about the Mayan ruins with pictures of the places you have been, fascinating!
Love Dad

by sbryan

Hi Craig,
Have enjoyed hearing about your trip so far. We had a great guide in Liberia Costa Rica will try to find his name for you. May be you can look him up if you are in that area. Take care and have a great leisurely trip. Uncle Larry and Aunt Debbie

by hipple

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