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After a quick walk around the town, there we were sitting in front of the big yellow church—the church we hoped was the one that Gord described to us in the email. I looked at Jonathon and asked, “Do you think we’ll be able to recognize them when they get here? We’ve read their blog and have seen enough pictures to know what they look like right?” “Yeah, I hope so. We’ll see,” he responded. I pulled out my book (another Malcolm Gladwell book, What the Dog Saw) and tried to read. What I was really doing was looking up after every sentence to make sure we didn’t miss them.
Within 5 minutes, I look up and a cute brunette girl with her hair in a bun was smiling and waving to us from her SUV. It was them! I nudge JB, threw my book in the backpack and walked towards them. “Hey guys!” I exclaim with a smile on my face. I was so excited to meet them. It was an interesting feeling meeting someone we had never actually met before, but knew so much about through reading their blog. Gord and Elisha got out of their car with big smiles and gave us both hugs. Instantly, we were friends.
We thanked them for the invitation to come hang out with them for a few days in Laguna de Apoyo. Small talk was unnecessary, we already new the little things about each other. So they took us for a quick walk down their favorite street, the Calzata, in Granada to show us some of their favorite neighborhood spots. Just as Elisha was showing me her favorite handmade Nica leather store, it started pouring rain. We dove into the store for a moment and then decided to dart out to the car so we could quickly go grocery shopping and head back to the Laguna.
The drive to the grocery store seemed like it was just a second as time usually does when you’re having fun. We had so much to talk about! The grocery store was much larger than our local San Juan del Sur Pali and was actually a locally owned company called La Colonial. I liked it much better than Pali. The prices were lower and the variety was greater. We picked out dinner items and grabbed some Toñas for the road—it’s always Toña time in Nica.
We jumped back into the car with our new friends and continued great conversation with our new friends over some beers. It was so nice to meet a sweet couple that was so similar to us in many ways. They already understood why we were here because they were here for very similar reasons. A deep friendship was quickly made as we cut through the surface and got to the deep life questions right away.
“Get ready guys, this part of the ride is rough and long. We’re driving on dirt roads through the jungle for the second half of the drive,” Gord warned us as we drove past the national park gate. We both smiled at each other and told him we were already stoked for the adventure.