I knew the airport had a flight leaving from it at 12 pm so aimed to be there a couple of hours beforehand in case it was only manned during flight times. The señora I spoke to there confirmed there were no available seats to Bluefields until Wednesday which wasn’t really a viable option for me. I spoke to an English speaking señor who gave me the option of flying to Managua on the Monday and then taking a flight to Bluefields from there. I wasn’t really keen on backtracking to Managua so decided to go back to the hotel and investigate further on the computer and possibly book the Managua-Bluefields option.
I checked again there were no available seats to Bluefields, then looked at the Managua-Bluefields option. I could fly out on the Monday but there were no connecting flights to Bluefields! I decided to walk back down to the airport and check with my friendly English speaking señor who had told me there were. After waiting for everyone to return from lunch, my señor confirmed what my computer had been trying to tell me. I could fly to Managua on Monday, but couldn’t get a connecting flight until Tuesday. Or fly direct on Wednesday. As I had been in Puerto Cabezas since Thursday afternoon and was running out of time to see the rest of the country, neither of those options were really particularly attractive.
I had exhausted all options for boating it down, waiting for available flights was going to take too long, so the only other option was to return the way I came. Two long, hard days vía local bus. I thought maybe I could travel part of the way and connect with other buses heading south, so traipsed to the bus terminal on the western side of town. There I met a lovely señora who very helpful but the facts were the facts. I would need to backtrack almost to where I had started. 17 hours on an overnight bus that left at 4 pm. I glanced at the 4 pm bus that was leaving the terminal, packed to the rafters inside and out and had a good, hard think about it. I know me. And the version of me that would have emerged after a such a trip would not have been one even I would have wanted to meet! Let alone the fine folk of Nicaragua.
I decided the best option after all would be to fly to Managua on the Monday and bus it back to the Carribben. At least I would be travelling through countryside I hadn’t already been through and the roads were good so trips were relatively quick by comparison. Decision made and I walked back to my hotel to make the booking so I at least I had a plan of action locked down. Flight booked and paid for and I could now relax.
As it was late in the day, I decided to have a couple of sunset cervezas to celebrate the fact that I had finally made a decision about how to leave this little port town. I walked down to the Malecon complex I had visited the previous day only to find it packed and the music blaring. Not quite the quiet place of solitude I was hankering for… On the way back to the hotel it started to drizzle. Fortunately, I made it back before the heavens opened up and the winds picked up. It was a lovely cool change though and I enjoyed listening to the pattering on the tin roof as I drifted off to sleep.