This one paragraph (which should be three or four) with tons of run-on sentences and improper uses of grammatical tools was proudly written by Kevin and published with hesitation by Cassie.
There are some things in Nicaragua that Cassie and I have come to associate with what it means to live life here, differences and intricacies that we have grown accustomed to after living a year and half in Managua. The first is how one defines her or himself. Upon meeting someone for the first time, you compare yourselves with one another, are you a Barca or Real Madrid fan (Spanish Soccer League)? Do you cheer for Argentina or Brasil, Boston or New York (no one likes the Twins, stating that the TC emblem is just too drab). Are you Catholic or Evangelical, Sandanista or Liberal (the political parties, though no one that is not Sandinista would ever say so upon first meeting someone they do not know). Do you like Nirvana or Guns and Roses - I always reply, with “los dos,” and if we have ever heard of Air Supply (the people here love Air Supply), which is phonetically pronounced, r-suple. This took me a while to figure it out, but sometimes you really do feel like you are living in the 80´s, not that we remember too much about that decade. Some other things we have simply come to regard as normal include the fact decaf coffee is not an option here (which neither of us mind, but we are getting older). Gas stations, restaurant parking lots, shopping malls and markets are places where you meet people. There are certain places where you automatically begin to breathe through your mouth or hold your breath because you know what you will smell if you do not. Rice and beans are simply a part of life and you will most likely eat them at least twice a day in any number of forms which all about taste the same way considering that salt is about the only acceptable seasoning and common black pepper is considered spicy (people often ask me if I am Mexican after they see the amount of chili that I put on the almost flavorless dishes). For some reason, at all public events loud music is necessary. Government rallies, cultural events, marches and protests often include gun fire, fireworks and various homemade explosives, but are also always accompanied by a loud sound system. A towel is not only something used to clean or dry oneself - it is really one of the most commonly used and multipurpose articles implemented by the Nicaraguan people. The towel is used as a cheap personal fan, a shield for the sun, a fly swatter, a head covering, a pot holder, bellow for the cooking fire, umbrella and if there is no toilet paper - well good thing you have your handy washable towel. When you receive a message on your phone it is most likely your phone company letting you know about the promotion of the day, or letting you know that for a small fee you can have your number sent to a dozen people in order to increase your number of friends, or that you can call your relatives in Costa Rica, Spain or the United States for a reduced rate today only (everyone you meet in Nicaragua has a relative living in one of these places), new tones, new games or just saying hi. In one day I have received over ten messages from my cell phone provider. Through our time we have come to love the people, their generous hospitality and kind spirit that makes this country even more beautiful than it naturally is. We have greatly enjoyed the people we have met and the relationships that we continue to build in our neighborhood and at our various places of employment. We are looking forward to what lies ahead, excited for each new day. At times we wish for cooler temperatures, for some different food options and we miss our family and friends dearly, but this is where we are now, living an adventure, serving, learning and seeing what is in store.