I am now back in Honduras, back in Tegus, in el barrio “Look, Flowers”. In Spanish it’s actually called Miraflores. I’ve had wonderful welcomes from friends and Pam’s family. And now I’m accustoming myself with the heat and speaking Spanish again. I’ve been eating baleadas and granola (not on the same plate) and tasting the wonderful delights of Honduran coffee, blocking my ears to regaeton and devouring the salsa. Yesterday was the Tegucigalpa derby between Motagua (my team) v Olimpia (Pam’s team). It finished 2-2. I didn’t go. I watched Baby’s Big Day Out in Spanish instead.
I arrived at San Pedro Sula and had the greatest surprise to be met by Pamela. Loved it. On the night I had my first Life Saver (Salva Vida beer). It was as lovely and cool as always. She had some work to do the next day in San Pedro with her colleague Erika. I went with her and visited some humanitarian projects run by a Panama Priest who the Bank of Honduras were accrediting with a special award for his hard work. I can’t remember the name of the projects or the priest I’m afraid. We were chauffeured around by someone who I thought was called Jorge, only to find out at the end of the day that his name was actually Carlos. He answered me when I called him Jorge, so I thought maybe he was called Carlos Jorge. But no, he wasn’t. Anyway, the first project we went to helped young people from poor areas gain skills in hairdressing, beauty, cooking and mobile phone repair. They also helped ex-gang members with rehabilitation and return to normality. Pam and Erika made a video and spoke to the director (not the Panama priest, but I think Panama Priest would make a brilliant name for a hip-hop star). It reminded me of Casa Alianza and various projects that I went to see where the street kids attended during the day. The man who was not Panama Priest gave us empanadas and biscuits made by people in the project, and then we went to Chaloma (or spelt something like that), which is a small town just outside San Pedro, where the Panama Priest set up a project that cares for malnourished babies. It was a beautiful project to see. I don’t have any photos of the projects, but what I did notice was the train that goes through San Pedro Sula. As we were passing by it in the car, we looked on in hollow surprise at the tracks that went through markets and stalls had to be taken down momentarily as the train passed through. Kids were also playing on the tracks bare foot. It’s a return to reality, a reminder that 60% or more Hondurans live in poverty. I haven’t got a photo, but this is one I stole from the net.
We then came back to the cool climates of Tegus (which are still so ridiculously hot) and I went to my new apartment which is delightful. The owners are lovely. It has a kitchenette, bathroom, bed, tv etc. The fridge is dead but it should be fixed today, I have killed all the ants and the internet is now working (it wasn’t over the weekend). There is lots of greenry outside and it’s very cosy. It’s also close to Casacadas mall in case I need some cold hard capitalism to feed my filty Western greed, but that’s cool with me. McDonalds and Pizza Hut will be pleased. I’m still coming to grips with where things are but I’m getting there slowly.
Last Friday night I went out with Hazel, Marlon, Mariela and Oscar, as well as made new friends in Josh and Theo, both Americans who work with Hazel at Global Brigades. We went to a gay club and I accidentally stepped on the toes of a large angry lesbian who gave me a furious look. Large angry Honduran lesbians are not to be messed with. That’s my piece of wisdom for the day. It was nice to be drinking cheap beer, although I started dancing to Jennifer Lopez and I had to ask myself where on Earth my life had gone wrong. We also went to a bar called Glenn’s where they were playing Oasis songs. There was a girl there from Reading, England. That’s interesting, isn’t it! But here’s a lovely little Oasis number. Stand By Me. They’re from Manchester. Not Reading. I love the song though.
So, to finish off this entry, I suppose I must include the biggest reason I returned to Honduras. See below.