27.12.2012 - 27.12.2012
We spent the first part of today in Santa Ana, and found out that the black stuff we saw falling from the sky yesterday is indeed from volcanoes. And we thought someone was just burning trash.
We utilized a couple great coffee shops with free WiFi, tried to make arrangements for the next few nights, did a little catching up, and bought a SIM card for El Salvador. We have not seen any other gringos since the Guatemalan border. It seems that El Salvadorans don't see many gringos, period. We attract a lot of attention, 99% positive. And many El Salvadorans, especially the younger generation, speak English. They are eager to practice, and eager to help us.
We found our way to Parque Nacional de los Volcáns, and found our first Jeep road. We certainly used 4WD, but were a little crestfallen (and impressed) when we saw the "ordinary" vehicles that made it up here, including school buses. Bet their undersides are plenty scratched.
We are currently sitting at our campsite, drinking beer and wine, doing puzzles by lantern light, and composing this installment to be posted the next time we have WiFi access. There are many El Salvadorans around us. Families, a group of silly guys, and church groups. I can hear conversations, laughter, bugs, and music--live singing and recorded. Even in español, I can identify cheesy christian rock.
The views in all directions are breathtaking. And there is a nearly-full moon rising over the trees.
Life is very good.
Tomorrow we will hike one of the volcanoes.