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Nicaragua SST

Nicaraguan Mother’s Day with Moisés Gadea

May 30 is Mother’s Day in Nicaragua, and a special guest helped us celebrate this with our host mothers: Nicaraguan singer-songwriter Moisés Gadea. Gadea has toured internationally, but he prefers to perform for small intimate gatherings, which worked out very well for us. He and his percussionist Camilo performed at our SST house for an exclusive audience of students, host mothers and several other special guests. Simply put, it was marvelous.

Managua Day Trip

Last Friday we returned to capital city Managua for the day, where we spent the first few days after the group arrived almost a month ago. (How did the month of May pass so quickly, we wonder?) We started off with a visit to Mercado Huembes, a multi-block indoor/outdoor market that includes everything from butcher shops and bakeries to furniture stores, beauty salons, boutiques, and handcrafted items. Local artisans selling their wares there use a variety of natural materials for popular souvenir items, including armadillos, snakes, seeds and cow horns.

A Trip Out East – Part 3 (Finale)

Moravian Church and a Miskito Village by Sarah Sunday took us to the Moravian Church in Pearl Lagoon, where we worshiped with a lot of singing and rather long sermon in Creole about honoring one’s family and being obedient to one’s parents. Our group sang two hymns for the church members: “I Sing the Mighty Power of God" and “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.”  The church seemed to enjoy it and Dalena was pleased with us, so that all turned out well despite some initial reservations.

A Trip Out East – Part 2

Johnny and Dancing by Brian Saturday was an eventful day in Pearl Lagoon. We began the day with a lecture from Johnny Hodgson about autonomy and the East Coast. Personally, I was amazed at the depth of his experience and insight. We were hearing from a man who had spoken to the U.S. Congress when he was only twenty years old and then went on to help write the autonomy law for the east coast of Nicaragua. Hodgson gave us a condensed version of the history of the East coast that was filled with knowledge and research. Every so often, you could watch his face and eyes light up as he touched on an important topic. He was one of my favorite speakers.

A Trip Out East – Preface

Co-leaders’ introduction by Lisa & Jen From last Thursday through this Monday we took an extended field trip to the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua, on the opposite side of the country from where we are spending most of the term. The eastern autonomous regions of Nicaragua comprise over 50% of the country's land mass but only 10% of the population. That population, however, is more culturally diverse than the Pacific side of the country, consisting of five major ethnic groups: Miskito, Sumu, Rama, Garifuna and Creole. The history of this part of the country is quite different from that of the Pacific side as well, the Caribbean side having been allied with the British (as a protectorate) for several hundred years rather than colonized by the Spaniards.