Day 32: Happy New Year.
1 gennaio 2022

Day spent running errands to prepare for the evening. We had never spent New Year’s Eve in the tropics and we are very curious.

Our original plan was to spend this evening on the ocean. Maybe in El Tunco or El Zonte, in Bitcoin Beach. But we moved guiltily late, looked for accommodations very few days in advance, and as it turns out, the beaches are full. It’s not that we couldn’t find a hotel that accepted BTC, we just couldn’t find an available room. 

No harm done, because when you travel leaving a lot of room for improvisation as we are doing, fate is always lurking and ready to surprise you. We decided to stay in Santa Ana, our favorite, and the owner of our hostel invited us to spend New Year’s Eve with him, his large family and the rest of the guests. We are very happy. It will be great to join the Salvadorans and celebrate according to their customs and traditions. Memorable.

So today we turned to organizing. We went around the markets of the city, looking for the ingredients to cook something. The first idea was to prepare something typically Italian, to give a homemade touch to the evening. But it was very difficult to find the necessary ingredients. For example, an ordinary package of pasta that wouldn’t risk becoming soggy after thirty seconds. As always, it was great fun to wander around the popular markets and mingle with the locals. But not very fruitful. Neither of us is exactly a Master Chef contestant and we couldn’t find anything at all that we felt we could cook.

Seized by hunger pangs we look for a place to eat. We have a craving for popular dive bars and so we try a couple. The first one is fascinating. A large room, with plastic tables and a very high ceiling. It smells delicious and there are an army of women behind the counters plating all sorts of delicacies. It is a real popular comador. At the tables simple people. Modestly dressed and with an infectious, toothless smile. Unfortunately we can’t stop, they don’t accept our bitcoins, but we’re very sorry. We try another one, not far away.

Upon arrival we are greeted by two large signs: acceptamos Bitcoin and free coffee. Paradise. We line up with the rest of the people and get our plates filled. The food is simple but delicious. Stewed chicken, very tender, rice and legumes, a banana and some fresh lemonade to drink. We get our fill with two dollars. It seems unbelievable, but for the bravest travelers, those with backpacks on their shoulders and the desire to really mix with the common people, here you can live with very little. You just need to know how to adapt and have the right spirit.

We return to the streets of the city. Preparations are in full swing. People are crowding the stores, the stalls selling barrels and fireworks are literally taken by storm, we see people loading in their cars the biggest and most beautiful piñatas we have ever seen. Maybe they are used here for parties in general, not just for birthdays as we imagine.

We still haven’t solved the problem of what to bring our diners. The idea of showing up empty-handed is unthinkable. We remember a nice bakery that accepts Bitcoin. We’ve been going there often for breakfast these days. It seems like a good option to us. We reach it and buy a big decorated cake. Very beautiful. They pack it carefully for us in a big cardboard box. They show us the QR code and wish us well. Always smiling. How many smiles we have received in the last month from the people of El Salvador.

We go back to the hostel satisfied. It may not be an Italian cake but it makes a good impression. And then we bought it in Bitcoin with an on-chain transaction. This means that there will be perennial evidence of our purchase, carved into the digital marble of the blockchain. A piece of history then, that will last as long as mankind survives. And maybe even beyond. It will therefore be the most special thing on the table tonight. Maybe no one but the two of us will really realize it. But who cares?

In Italy it’s already midnight. We get greetings from friends and relatives. Here, on the other hand, we’re not even getting ready for dinner yet. We’ll start doing that soon. As soon as I finish writing. 

Everything in the world around us is subjective. Even time. Habits. Everything is a convention. An unspoken social agreement. Everything except Bitcoin. Its a universal clock, pulsing unstoppably. Someday maybe we’ll even use it as a time reference. Maybe when we’re a multiplanetary species. I find that plausible.

I am about to greet the arrival of a new year. I’m about to do it from the smallest country in Central America, while I’m living an unprecedented adventure. And so I can only be grateful to Satoshi Nakamoto for his invention, for all the opportunities he has given me so far, but most of all for the dreams he continues to make me live. I’ve always wanted to be the main character of a sci-fi adventure. To leave my mark. And I’m really doing it. Thanks to Bitcoin.

Happy New Year to all!