So our tour continued ( see previous post) around the city of Managua stopping at various historic and modern sites including some of the ones noted below.
We stopped down along the waterfront of Lake Managua to check out a few sites. First was the La Concha Acustica found close to Lake Managua is a large concrete sculpture resembling a large surging water wave that is about to crash upon the shore, we were told that it is has been used to stage concerts, political speeches, cultural and religious events like the visit from the Popes from the Vatican.
A large white obelisk monument is located with in the same park and it actually has a picture of Pope John Paul II on it. The site is where the Pope addressed the Nicaraguan people on his visit.
It does not look like there have been many events here recently ( … great place for a rock concert!) and kind of looks run down or maybe it is not well maintained. Lots of weeds growing around with garbage everywhere and there is a big ugly pink presidential billboard right beside the structure.
The Dennis Martínez National Stadium (it was the largest stadium in Central America at the end of its construction, it no longer the biggest but still the largest in Nicaragua) is a large baseball stadium named in honor of Nicaragua’s first Major League Baseball (MLB) player Dennis Martínez whom played for teams such as the Montreal Expos (I remember watching him back when I was a kid).
The building has these large arms that extend from the outside and then over the stands housing large lights for the games, at first glance we thought that the place was under reconstruction and these things might have been cranes or what not.
The stadium also serves as a venue for football (what we call soccer in North America) games, as well as concerts and other events (I doubt that Hockey is on that list). It is one of buildings that survived the large 1972 earthquake. Baseball is Nicaragua’s national sport and the stadium is where the Managua’s Boer’s team plays. There was no event going on at the time nor was the facility open so we could only google from the out side and only wonder what the Managua’s Boer’s games would be like. I noticed that there was not much room to park so it must be pretty busy place on the streets come game day.
This place continues to amaze me everyday because although it shares many similarities to Canada it still has many differences (makes me feel like I have stepped back in time sometimes …). For instance it is pretty common to have a horse and buggy going down any main street, 3 or 4 people riding on a small motorcycle or even a group of people riding on the back of a pick up truck.
We ventured on over to the El Huembes Market, a large place that houses thousands of little vendors and people, here they sell everything from food, souvenirs, cosmetics, house wares, clothes, hardware to hammocks, rocking chairs and many other local craft items.
It was extremely large, busy and easy to get lost, as there are many little hallways and corridors with vendors tucked in everywhere however apparently is only the second largest market in Nicaragua (The other one must be pretty big …). Every body you see here wants to sell you something and they often do not like to take no for an answer and sometimes drop the prices and what not. However some things no matter how cheap they may be, I still do not want to buy them! (Like the guy walking around with various bottles of pills, he walks up to me and hands me a jar, that turned out to be Viagra pills!!! No thanks dude, my equipment works just fine :) ) What did I buy here at the market, well I got some small paintings and some beer t-shirts.
Every body here in this city tries to offer you some sort of service here in return for a little cash, wether it be the dude who stands to watch your truck for you, the squeegee kids, people who try to sell youstuff at your window while you wait for a red light or the children in the park that approach you with their palm masterpieces in exchange for some coins.
Eventually we finished up, stopping at a local restaurant for some Nicaraguan style food (Carne a la Planche etc) and then returned to the hotel for some local drinks by the pool. While Nicaragua Customs takes thier time processing our equipment that we need to complete the job here.
… tough job but hey somebody has to do it …