We just wanted to say we love you and hope you have the happiest of birthdays! We will be on the ocean for your birthday so we are posting this early since we don’t know when we will have internet again. Wish we could be with you to celebrate, watch you throw a yahtzee and give you birthday hugs!
We are on our way out of El Salvador as my visa is expiring today. We are checked out of the country and waiting for the tide to cross the bar out of the estuary. We will be several days (or more based on the low to no wind forecasted for this week!) to Honduras where we will visit an island in the Gulf of Fonseca called Isla El Tigre with a 2,500 foot volcano. It was the central command post for Sir Francis Drake’s Pacific fleet and used to be a CIA base.
|Yesenia - always smiling|
We will miss all of the friends we have made during our time here in El Salvador. People like Yesenia who we met when we were out for a walk one day and came across her food stand. She was making pasteles ( a potato-vegetable mix wrapped in a handmade corn tortilla and deep fried!) which are really yummy. She is open from 1:30-5 on Thursdays and 2-5 on some Sundays and, like most of the people we have met here, has been very patient and kind when our Spanish falls short and helped us with some of our pronunciations.
|Enchiladas with avocado and egg!|
|Boiled and fried yucca with curtido!|
|Fransisco, Yesenia, Karla and Jodi|
You would have so much fun with her daughter Karla who is just 5 months younger than you. She is learning English in school along with her normal classes. She is a great person with a giant smile that comes straight from her heart just like you! She sells candied coconut and papaya and shell sculptures that she makes with her mom out of shells and seeds that they gather on the beach.
|I miss your smile and hugs!!|
|Art by Karla|
We were honored yesterday when, on learning we were leaving she gave us a gift of one of her creations - una pareja de periquitos formado de concha y ojo de Benado (a parakeet couple made of clam shells and seeds of eye of Benado). She said it was because we are lovebirds.
We have met lots of friendly people here and it is hard to say goodbye to such wonderful people knowing we may never see them again.
|Jay on Peace Day|
|The start of an 8 bead wide bracelet|
Our friend Jay (who is a great yoga instructor from Chile) showed us how to make beaded bracelets and necklaces. I am so excited to give it a try!
|Valle wearing one of her creations|
I have been saving shells from some of the beaches we have visited and hoping to learn how to make them into jewelry so I was also excited because our friend Vale (an artist from Argentina who gives great hugs that remind me of you) agreed to show us some of the techniques for the beautifully creative jewelry she makes and sells out of macramé and shells.
I need more practice as you can see. At one point when I was working on the macramé for this shell, I told Vale that I wasn’t doing so great and she shrugged her shoulders and told me not to worry, that I had picked the hardest technique for my first attempt.
Later, when I told Darren, he got a big laugh out of that since he teases me that I invariably choose whatever project is most difficult when I am first learning something.
Well, we have to get going to meet the bar pilot. We hope you have a fabulous birthday and a great year! Have lots of fun and eat some ice cream for us!
Love and hugs,
Aunt Jodi and Uncle Darren
Aunt Jodi and Uncle Darren