Monday 8th August 2011
We got to meet Moises and his strange looking dog that looked like it should have bigger legs than it had. I have no idea what breed it was, but it was a nice friendly mongrel (no one can seriously breed a dog on purpose that looks like that!). I can’t remember what it’s name was. Maybe one of the Guides can remember. They feel in love with him. Throughout our time there, someone wiped beige paint on his tail. So we’ve got pink baby chickens and a black and white and beige dog wandering around this little town.
Moises was a professional painter and lived very close to the school. He would be guiding us through the whole process. There was somewhat of a communication problem between him and me. I didn’t understand his Spanish and he couldn’t understand mine. I have been told that I have small Spanish twang from my days living in Spain by quite a few Hondurans (funnily enough, Spanish people don’t think so), but his accent was spoken with a strong lisp, and he spoke very fast despite repeated attempts to get him to slow down. When I spoke in Spanish to him, he just looked confused and asked Rudolfo for a translation from my Spanish to a Spanish he could understand. He would also forget to tell me things. There was one time where he asked to me fetch two panes of paint from the school and bring them down a steep hill. I knew we were painting the school beige, but there was also ocre, which he didn’t want and forgot to tell me. He laughed. I didn’t. He learned to communicate a bit better after that. And not to laugh at someone carrying the wrong panes of paint up and down hills due to his forgetfulness. Nonetheless, he didn’t go by Catherine’s and Kris’ “Honduran time” stereotype and was on time everyday, worked overtime, and worked very, very hard.
As you can see, we filled in the tiny crooks and lines separating the bricks to start off with, then we used the rollers to go over it. The walls were like sponges. They pretty much ate the paint. You could spend an hour dabbing in the gaps and going over it only to find more little grey spots that needed filling. It could be a nightmare. I was very particular with it and it took me hours to do it, while the Guides sped through it. Later on during the time painting, Tashina was renamed Machina because of the way she steam-rolled through her work, “of excellent quality,” said Moises (I think).
Marcia Wendy, the host mother, had to go Siguatepeque (near Lago Yahoa, to those who really must know) and her children had to stay with their gran in San Lorenzo, which neither were delighted with. Rudolfo and myself would be eating at a restaurant, friends of Wendy, for much of the week. It was nice, I must say, but four or five days of eating beef, beans and eggs with tortillas, as well as mudongo soup (cows intestines – seriously, it is), I was sick at the sight of the place, and of beans. I didn’t want to see another (my love for them as returned, for Hondurans who are concerned). That was the dish for lunch and dinner. Oh yeah, and Coke or Sprite for a drink, which I won’t complain about after sweating my backside off in Pespire’s heat.
We then went back to work for a couple of hours in the afternoon. Because of the way the sunset, we had to keep changing where we were painting to be in the shade. Moises was used to it (or he was sun-worshiper or a complete lunatic) and was happy painting any old wall at any time of day with his squat little dog.
On the night, Rudolfo and I had heard that some of the girls had been riding on motor-cycles around Pespire. I think motorcycles are dangerous even with lots of padding on a properly laid tarmacked road. Funnily enough, Pespire doesn’t have tarmacked roads! We had to put an end to it. Also on the Pespire grapevine was that three of the Guides had been lip-locking (apparently the Canadian way of saying snogging) with the locals. Two of the girls had also kissed the same boy, which I thought was hilarious, and probably gave a plucky young Pespiran a big ego. I won’t name the girls (all the Guides know who they were). There was also a need to sort out a few communications problems a couple of girls were having with their families, as well as take Emma and Shayla to the local clinic, run by a doctor who was laughing all the way to bank while we were in Pespire.
We finished at the house of the La Familia Nieto Matamoros, who were playing Monopoly with a few Guides. I had joked with the family by saying I was a fantastic dancer. Everyone who really knows me knows that I hate dancing and I’m very shit at it. I won’t pardon my French about it either. I’m really that awful. I was put on stage and made to dance for the family and some Guides, and then became the laughing stock. I didn’t help my own cause by repeating, “Soy mejor que tu” – “I’m better than you”. To add insult to injury, they had me trying to dance to reggaeton! F–king reggaeton!!
After a while, we played more Monopoly. Kris, although a lovely, generous person, showed a darker side of her character by bankrupting everyone and buying up whatever she could get her hands on. The precious little Maria Jesus, who I think I mentioned in the last post, also kept robbing from the Monopoly bank, which I found funny because she wasn’t even playing. But when anyone in this part of the world starts robbing banks at the tender age of nine, then you’ve got to wonder what lies ahead for her.
Later on, two of the sisters from the Familia Matamoros (Katia and Candidá (she preferred to be called Candy)) wanted me to do some translating for them into Spanish. They had five or six songs on their mobile phone, but I can’t remember them all. Two of them that I do remember are Green Day (Boulevard of Broken Dreams) and Eminem (Love the Way You Lie), neither which I knew off by heart. I received a great hand from Shayla and Sarah on trying to understand the songs in English first! But here I was, translating two songs I didn’t know in the tropical paradise of Pespire! It was all quite surreal and beyond my wildest dreams, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.
I am going to end this update with the two songs above, with the lyrics in English for the girls to learn from. They will probably never read my blog, or understand it for that matter, but it’s purely for your entertainment. Enjoy!