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On the road signs it says Ruta de la Paz, the Peaceroad. It sounds nice and I follow it through El Salvador. Sometimes it is muddy, sometimes rainy, but mostly it is boiling. The road leads me across the lowlands and up in the mountainous areas that used to be a guerilla stronghold, where I meet one of its soldiers.  He tells me about the civil war and the life in the woods, which also was muddy, rainy and boiling. The guerilla man guides me through the history of a country that was beaten by its leaders and that tried to strike back. The fight lasted for twelve years, where the guerilla was fed by the population here in the north and the army was armed by the country in the north, USA. As in most conflicts, the civilian population was the victim.

I meet a woman who lives in the small village of El Mozote. As a girl, on a winter’s day in 1981, she went to the city for a few days with her parents. Upon her return, the rest of her family and the other villagers were murdered. The army had massacred everyone before they continued to the nearby villages. After several years of war, El Salvador eventually found the road to peace and the fight between the guerilla and the government has now turned into party politics. What remains of the armed conflict up here in the north, is a museum and memories. The woman in El Mozote who survived tells me that we have to remember, to ensure that it never happens again.

El Salvador has a violent reputation, a reputation from the terminated civil war and a reputation from the ongoing gang wars. I mainly stick to the Peaceroad and avoid the infamous cities. As usual, I cycle through areas that are friendly. The people along the road however are waving more eagerly than usual and seem more eager than usual to want to speak to me. I meet some musicians that sing to me about their country, about how it has suffered, about how it has won, about how it has united and about how it continues to dream. I really like it there on the road of peace in El Salvador and I am looking forward to cycling on some more of those roads, as I whiz through Honduras and into Nicaragua.




  1. Anna Strommer Monday, August 2, 2010, at 2:22 PM

    Gripande berattelser du far berattade for dig som du sa fint delar med dig av till oss!
    Ar det just for att de vill beratta sina historier eller for att de ar annu mer ovana vid cyklande resenarer genom landet som de sa garna vill ha kontakt, tror du?
    KRAM kram

    Fortsatt fredsam fard flygande fietsande fenomen! (fiets=cykel har i holland =) )

  2. hanna Tuesday, August 3, 2010, at 9:23 AM

    Tack Anna,

    Jag vet inte riktigt varför. Kanske bara ren vänlighet i ett land som är trött på att betraktas som våldsam. En kvinna som sålde grönsaker till mig sa att när vita människor kommer till El Salvador behandlas de som gudar, fast när salvadoraner kommer till vita länder behandlas de som brottslingar. Hon förstod inte riktigt heller varför.

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