Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Gradually, I'm returning to 100% hearing, and the novelty of this hasn't yet worn off. For the first time since mid-July, I may dare to say I'm completely well...
I'm even going to a concert tonight!

Two Days of Opera

In historic Granada, Nicaragua, the highlight of our stay was two tours with Gioconda, a charming and eccentric independent guide whose gimmick is dressing in brightly colored 18th century colonial Spanish attire. Her self-owned company is 'Opera Gioconda Tours.'

The 'Opera' name is from her musical background: Gioconda is a classically trained singer, a fact she uses to excellent effect by incorporating music into her tours. She sang the Nicaraguan national anthem at a flag monument, liturgical music in church, folk music in the streets...

Here, Gioconda explains something to Erik using maps and other cultural references from her basket of resources...

Erik discovered Gioconda the night we arrived; she was 'fishing' for customers in our hotel lobby, and Erik told me he'd found a lady guide who could be 'either really great or really crazy.' We bet on the former, and won. We liked our tour so much, that we decided to hire her the next day to see more of the town and visit nearby volcanoes... Below, pictures from our morning stroll through town, soaking up the atmosphere....

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