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El Salvador

  • Wednesday, March 24, 2010
  • Jeff and Kari
  • Playa El Tunco (The "Pig" Beach) - Beach we stayed on--the big rock is supposed to look like a pig;

    I'm (this is Jeff for a first in awhile) running out of places to "surf" on the internet. So, I'm coming back full circle to the blog. I decided last week was too much of an "adventure" (alas this was no "Candy Island"...but, I digress) to pass comment on.

    So, several months ago my brother Brad and I started formulating a plan to try and put together a surf trip. We were going to do it over spring break, but stuff kept coming up (notice the lack of posts the last 2 months) and so we nixed it. The Friday before Spring Break we were looking up and down the coasts for a daytrip and I stumbled upon tickets to El Salvador. A couple hours later we had plane tickets purchased with no other plans in line. Anyways, too much stuff happened (funny now--not so funny when it was happening). Here's a list of things to learn from if you're planning a get-away (in no particular order).
     The group on some steps at the San Andreas ruins

    1. Bring someone who speaks the language. This one came back to bite us several times.

    2. Make sure you have a lock on the dates of your hotel room--a bathroom door is a plus if 4 people are going to be shoved into one room.

    3. Make sure your hotel safe has a back-up key prior to locking it. Brad & Karrie (+ our guide Amika running away) in front of some shop in Juayua

    4. If you're 6'6", don't surf point breaks at low tide--your body will inevitably find the large, sharp rocks.

    5. When they say don't drink the water, then that probably means avoid brushing your teeth with it or getting ice from any restaurant.

    6. If you're scared of heights, don't choose a waterfall as a "scenic excursion".

     The waterfalls outside of Juayua - Kari was in tears about crossing the small "ladder bridge" in the background behind her

    7. Satellite TV in a third world country = a lot of channels you still can't watch or understand.

    8. Bring a swimsuit to "scenic excursions" that involve water and make sure you understand what all is entailed in exploring an underwater cave through a mountain.

    Asking Amika is this tunnel really only "1"00 was longer BTW and required swimming underwater in pitch black at one point...needless to say, the girls were not game

    9. Always order the O.J. in Central America--it really is that good.

    10. Surfboards will find a way to hurt you or someone close by.

    11. Your passport is never "safe"--just ask the Japanese diplomat on our return flight.

    12. Local surf contests at night make a good spectator sport.

     Brad & I poking out of a side tunnel in the waterfall tunnels

    13. Invest heavily in Imodium and sunscreen (and if you attract mosquitoes like I do--bug spray).

    14. If you're going to take your wife to the 2nd most dangerous country in the Americas and just outside of the most dangerous city in said country, don't let her find out about any of that information until after she's already on the plane.

    15. If you want your parents to watch your kids for 5 days, have your brother call your dad in the middle of the night to do it. Chances are he'll say "yes" and plans will be well underway before your mom finds out about the decision the following day.

    16. Learn the foreign word for "locksmith"--just trust me.

    17. You can't Skype if the promised Wi-Fi doesn't exist and the hotel computer's internet only works 1/2 the time.

     The ruins at San Andreas...Kari wanted to run the steps but there was a fence

    18. If you're 6'6", have your wife ask for the exit aisle on the long flights--sometimes you just get lucky.

    19. If you own a hybrid car, know how to jump the battery and pray your brother has jumper cables.

    20. If your GPS decides to crash and it's the only device with your hotel's info on it, you're kinda screwed.

    21. Priceline will always get you the hotel that does not include the continental breakfast...always!

    The crew at a scenic overlook with 5 volcanos in the background (2 or are still active)

    22. Hot water would be nice to have for post-surf showers.

    23. There are some big ants that come out at night in El Salvador.

    24. If you have valuables in your hotel safe (say a nice digital camera with exposed lenses) and the key were to get lost and management says they will open it and you can leave the room and go about your business--DON'T LISTEN!

    Brad shredding the inside break at Sunzal - our hotel's point break

    All in all, it was good waves, good company, and an experience to tell stories from for a lifetime! Kari, Karrie, and Brad--what did I miss?

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