[Day 8 Continued...]
It was time to head to Isla de Ometepe, the island of the twin volcanoes. San Juan Del Sur was a blast but we were ready for a new adventure. We packed up our 2005 Hyundai Galloper and rumbled on north to the ferry port of St George. I had made a reservation at the best hotel I could find on the shores of Lake Nicaragua ($35 a night per room, wooo haaa!), and for the 1:00pm ferry for five passengers and our trusty iron horse. We were all set to voyage on to this remote and relatively unknown destination... or so I thought.
We arrived with plenty of time for the 1:00pm launch but the ticket office insisted our reservation was for the day before. The two auto spaces on the ferry were already occupied. It was no problem getting us on board but the Galloper was not happening. There were no other passages for the rest of the day and all automobile spots were occupied for the remaining month. The island had no rental car services nor did it have taxis. The primary mode of transportation for local residents there were horses, the real kind. We were looking pretty screwed at the moment and the clock was ticking. I started asking anybody in the vicinity of the ticket office for suggestions on how I could get a car on the island. Just then a thin, dark skin Nica farmer approached me with the solution. A barge was
heading to the island an hour later to deliver bananas to the island residents and there was barely room for my truck to tag along. It was the last barge of the season. $50 would get us a spot for the Galloper, my son Michael and I on deck with the captain and crew of two. What a deal!
The travel gods were smiling upon us. My buddy Will, with a worried, unconfident contorted look on his face, boarded the ferry with my sons Will and Ryan and agreed to hang out on the other side until our arrival. For Michael and I the adventure was heating up.
The plan went off without a hitch, meaning there was nothing to tie our car down onto the vessel. Michael and I moved some empty crates in front and behind the car to hopefully stop it from rolling off the barge if the seas went choppy. This delayed us by another hour but by Latin standards we were totally on time, in fact maybe even early.