Another Nicaragua Cash Crop

Surfing. Surfline reports that Nicaragua will host the 2012 ISA World Masters Surfing Championship.

Is Bamboo the new Nicaraguan export?

A BBC article talks about how bamboo is an amazing material and it's potential as a Nicaraguan export.

In eastern Nicaragua, bamboo was until recently regarded by most of the local population as valueless - more as a nuisance to be cleared than a boon to them and their region.

But on land that was once under dense forest cover, then turned over to slash-and-burn agriculture and ranching, new bamboo plantations are rising.

About This Weather ...

This is Semana Santa. While there is the Easter side of it, for most here the important ingredient is that it is a week to celebrate summer before summer goes away. Everyone and I do mean everyone goes to the beach.

That said, what happened today? It the last two hours we got 28mm of rain including a bit of hail. That is not on the agenda for summer. Further, there has been no more that week-long stretches of summer weather all summer.

Survey Results on Drug Decriminalization

As your probably know, the president of Guatemala suggested that maybe we, meaning Central American governments should decriminalize drugs. There has been quite a bit of discussion here and elsewhere about that. But, in the meantime, M&R conducted a poll.

Rearmed Contras??

Nicaragua Aims for 50% Renewable Energy by End of 2013

According to a (poorly translated) article in Inside Costa Rica, Nicaragua expects that 40% of its energy will come from renewable sources by the end of 2012 and 50% by the end of 2013. While the article doesn't say this, I assume this is really a reference to electricity, not total energy use.

Do you love the Sandinistas?

There is a nice little blog out of Ometepe Island titled Rewired and Retired in Nicaragua.

On checking it today, I see that she recently referenced Nicaragua: The Sandinista Revolution Continues! by Dan Kovalik, published Feb 09, 2012.

Mass Wedding on St. Valentine's Day

While this was well covered in the local media and was even televised, this is the first I have seen about it in any English language press. The article, which doesn't say much, appeared in The Voice of Russia.

Hit Man to Hero

This is the name of a film that two women plan to make about "Oscar". In an article in you can read about the person and the plan for the film.

I expect some of us know who "Oscar" is.

In his teens, Oscar served as a Sandanista guerrilla. He trained in Cuba to become a hit man. He served as Daniel Ortega's bodyguard, Madison said. He became addicted to drugs.

Ground Hog Day

Has it been another year? That’s right today is Ground Hog Day, the official Expat holiday in Masachopa/Pochemil. So true to the Movie, I guess it will be like ever other day. “Is today Monday or Friday?”

Nicaragua's Relative Safety

A somewhat unexpected source, The Economist, has an article about how safe Nicaragua is relative to its neighbors.

The article contains some decent comparative information about the countries in the region. It includes information on the police force here and what seems to be their secret of success.

Claro Que No?

There have been quite a few posts here critical of Claro (Enitel) in Nicaragua. Apparently we are not along. An article in Global Voices talks about how Claro has been censoring those who have been critical of Claro's service.

Specifically, the site which is critical of Claro, was blocked by Claro. That block has since been lifted. (Note that the site is in Spanish. Good chance to test out lingro (See

About Those Increasing Electrical Rates

Electrical rates were supposed to increase this month. The first installment on what's happening I have seen is in El Universal, a Venezuelan newspaper.

The idea is to borrow money through ALBA. The article states that if the government can borrow $108 million, no increase would be needed but at $70 million the increase would only be 10%.

Nicaragua Deploys 1000 Soldiers to Combat Rural Crime

Insight Crime reports that the Nicaraguan government has deployed 1000 soldiers to help combat rural crime. This is coffee picking season so there is a lot more money in the countryside than during the rest of the year so this makes sense.

Goodbox Coming to Nicaragua

EIN news published a press release about Goodbox coming to Nicaragua. Goodbox is a Taiwan-based company that produces product packaging says they will create 4000 job opportunities.

Goodbox, whose slogan is 'enrich your idea, decorate your packing', manufactures its quality products for world-renowned international brands such as American Eagle, Diesel, Nine West and Hush Puppies. The company also services major retail chains, among them Macy's, Target and JC Penney.

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