May 18, 2008

Butler Volleyball In Nicaragua

May 18, 2008

Butler outside hitter Stephanie McGurk documents the Bulldog volleyball team's eighth day in Nicaragua.

We started off the day by getting on the 9 am ferry to leave Ometepe Island and return to the mainland. After we got off the ferry, we drove for about an hour then arrived in San Juan Del Sur. It is a beautiful city that surrounds a bay that is connected to the Pacific Ocean.

We had the day to ourselves and were able to relax and just enjoy the spectacular scenery. For some of the girls, it was their first time swimming in the Pacific Ocean. We also explored the area and found some really cool shops to browse in.

After having the afternoon free to do what we wanted we all met at 5:15 to watch the sunset. We went to the Pelican Eyes Hotel and ate in the restaurant, which sat atop a hill for the perfect view of the city and the beach. It was one of the most beautiful sights so far on the trip.

While we were waiting we were entertained by the restaurant´s Howler monkey habitat. We shared a great family styled dinner of salad, chicken, pasta, and of course rice and beans.

After dinner and dessert, we started to walk back to the hotel but found that a soccer (people in Nicaragua call it football) game was going on in the same place where we will be playing the Nicaraguan national team. We stopped in to watch half of the game. It was an amazing atmosphere. There were two local teams playing, and the crowd was huge!! The DJ announcing the game realized who we were because the local paper had written an article about our visit. Everyone seems to recognize us and is excited by our visit (we´re kind of like celebrities).

The DJ started to play popular American songs for us to enjoy. The atmosphere was electric and we are so excited to come back and play volleyball tomorrow. We can't wait to feel all the energy and excitement that the locals have for sporting events.

The people here are very nice and we are so happy that all of our efforts to make this trip came together and paid off! We are lucky and blessed to experience the kindness that so many people have shown us. This will be a time in our lives that we will never forget!

Wish us luck!! GO DAWGS!!!