Place Taken: Tisey Reserve, near Esteli
Date Taken: October 27, 2008
During Nicaragua’s rainy season, the forests surrounding the city of Esteli get pretty wet. We were determined, however, not to let a little (or a lot) of rain keep us from seeing this beautiful part of the country. So we made two trips—one to the Miraflor Nature Preserve (which turned out to be a muddy disaster as we wrote about at the time) and one to the Tisey Reserve. Though the evening and night brought a lion’s share of rain, the day had breaks of sunshine, which we took advantage of, hiking up a nearby mountain for a 10-mile view and then walking to a nearby village where we were told they make excellent goat cheese.
By the time we arrived at the village our mouth was nearly watering as we thought about the creamy, white, spreadable goat cheese that we know and love. But that’s not what we found when we got to the goat farm; what we found was hard rounds of rinded cheese. We went for it anyway. It turned out that we didn’t like it as much as the creamy stuff, but it wasn’t bad. Right after we purchased it, the rain began to come, so we enjoyed the cheese with some bread while tucked away in the village general store, where the friendly owner provided us with a cutting board and knife. The rain would last the rest of our time in Tisey, but it wouldn’t ruin the trip. We could still lay in the hammock on the porch of our cabin and listen to the frogs, and that evening we met another couple also visiting the reserve. The guy was from Nicaragua, the girl from Spain, and our entire conversation was in Spanish, a major accomplishment for me as I’d just finished my first and only week of Spanish lessons.