Sunday November 15, 2015, 115 miles (185 km) – Total so far: 12,999 miles (20,920 km)
November 12, 2015 The first two hours of riding south from Potosi was on a dirt road. After that there was a newly paved road that led us to our beach destination of Aposentillo after an 11 mile ride down pavers and rock. A fellow Floridian, Jay, came out from a house next to where we were checking out the beach and told us about a hotel and hostel down the road. He also said that if we couldn’t find anything to come back to his place. We had been looking at a hostel at this location but it was closed. We took Jay’s advice and continued down the road. The hotel was full but then we found a hostel named Joe’s Place and it had everything we wanted at a price of $25 for a private room with bath. Dorm rooms go for $8 each bed. Joe’s Place is full of surfers from around the world. Joe warmly welcomed us with a nice room on the bottom floor so that we could roll our bikes in. Joe is a fellow traveler that has circumnavigated the world on his sailboat. He now has this cool hostel close to the world famous break called “The Boom”. http://nicaraguasurfhotel.com/. Dinner time was fun as the food is plentiful and excellent. Surfers from Australia, New Zealand, Canada, U.S., England, Norway, etc. were staying here some as long as a month already. We had a great time swapping surfing stories and they were all fascinated by our bike trip. Four of the guys had driven from California and could not believe that we rode our bikes here. The next morning we were on the beach early to check out the wave action. Joe offered us longboards but the wave is way too fast and heavy so we opted for body surfing. As it was we were heavily pounded to the ground but did manage some barrel time.
November 14, 2015 74 miles We left Joe’s Place and can’t say enough about the hospitality, food, and friendly atmosphere there. Anyone in this area whether cycling, surfing or just exploring really needs to stay here. As in many hostels around the world he operates on the honor system. Whatever you take as in food, drinks, and miscellaneous items you mark down on your sign in sheet and pay when you check out. Plus it is clean, friendly with good and plentiful food. The dogs are fun too. That night as we were all eating dinner Jocelyn’s phone came up with the French terrorist attacks and we all felt bad about what just happened as we are all travelers in this world. Joe turned on his TV and we all took in the events that just happened. We are all family and it got pretty quiet. We were headed to the city of Leon and Joe told us it was flat and gave us names of some recommended hostels. The ride was fast, our first such ride in months without a lot of climbs (but boring actually) and we were soon in Leon. Once there we did have a difficult time finding a place as the first hostel was very crowded and noisy (Joe told us so), the next was dirty, and the next was 3 flights up that we didn’t want to deal with hauling everything. And the next believe it or not the maid said no to bikes in the room. Our bikes stay with us, period. That has happened a few times on this trip. The maid and reception clerk got into a somewhat fight because of that and the maid won so we said, “No gracias” and left. The next hostel had only a “matrimonial” bed available and after looking at that I politely declined. At this point I told Jocelyn it was her turn to try since I had struck out 4 times. She immediately got us a nice cheap room at the next hostel.
After cleaning up we headed to the main square and cathedral for an excellent dinner and local entertainment. Leon, Nicaragua is a somewhat tourist city that is very friendly and safe. Today along the road there was a lot of begging for “pesos”, hey we are not in Mexico, from kids along the road. I don’t know what that is about. We are in NIO (NIcaragua Oro (27.75 NIO to 1 U.S. dollar)) territory. Tomorrow another beach day for surfing as this ride isn’t about just bicycling around the world.
Sunday morning several of us in the hostel took two bus rides to get to the beach. The first bus was standing in the back of a truck and the 2nd was an old American Bluebird school bus ride. The driver would not leave until all standing space was taken. We stood and were very cramped as the driver took off. He then stopped at several places where even more people were loaded. At over 90 degrees we were really sweating and dripping over the sitting passengers. They didn’t like that but what the heck were we to do. I kept saying to myself “This too will pass”. After 45 minutes we made it 12 miles to the beach outside of Leon. We settled into a beach bar/restaurant hangout, rented a board, and surfed. Lunch of whole fish was excellent. The waves were fun, the board was crap (but who cares), the beer was cold and the sand was so hot we had to run across the black sand beach. The heat was even going through our sandals! What a great restful day although we are so bad at surfing now with our arms hurting after just a few paddle outs! The best part was all the new friends we met from Nicaragua, Israel, Texas, and Australia