When you are invited to serve in Peace Corps Nicaragua you get an electronic welcome packet. And somewhere in that welcome packet there is a recommendation to read Blood of Brothers by Stephen Kinzer, a tome on contemporary Nicaraguan history. I got a copy from the DC library and started reading it on my way to Nashville, TN for Lubben’s bachelor party. I loved it, and I read it again after getting to León since the places were more familiar to me. I can’t under-emphasize how influential the book was on my personal opinions about Nicaragua, its history, its government, and the role that America has played in Nicaragua.
This evening I had the opportunity to meet the author and hear him talk. He also has ten journalism students in tow who are all investigating an aspect of local import or culture. One of the students may even tag along to school with me tomorrow. It was a nice talk. He didn’t say anything mind-blowing, but it was nice to hear his opinions once again and see how they have evolved a bit, more than 20 years on. I’m really glad to be in León where there are so many cultural institutions willing to put on events like this.