Honduras – San Pedro Sula & Puerto Cortes

I arrived in San Pedro Sula late last night and luckily my hostel came through
and had someone pick me up from the airport. Arnold, who goes by Tito, was
my driver and he was hysterical. He was pretty much telling me all about
himself and Honduras and talking a lot about ex girlfriends. Next you you
know I´ve giving him relationship advice. It was quite an interesting
conversation. He took myself and this other guy Nathan around San Pedro Sula
to show us some of the sights before taking us to the hostel. San Pedro is
pretty interesting. The main street that we came in on looks like any other
street in the US. We drove past McDonalds, Burger King, Wendy´s, Pizza Hut,
KFC, Popeyes, Churches Chicken, Applebees, Ruby Tuesday, etc. etc. It´s
strange because I have yet to see so many American restaurant in any city in
Costa Rica.

After a brief introduction at the Hostel, I headed off to Ruby Tuesdays with
Tito and some German girls from the Hostel to watch Angela and Juan Carlos
(the owners of the hostel) play in their band. (Yes, I spent a Saturday
night at Ruby Tuesdays…it´s not often you´ll hear those words coming from
me). The band was pretty good and the place was packed with wealthier
Hondurans and the band mostly played cover songs: With or Without You,
Wicked Game, 4 Non Blondes, the song from the breakfast club, etc. etc.
Pretty funny stuff. At first I was pretty intrigued, but they went on for so
long (almost two and a half hours) that eventually I got bored and just
watched the Little League World Series (saw that Beaverton was in
it…pretty cool). Eventually, I walked back with Nathan and this local
named Menases (sp) and danced over cockroaches almost the whole way home.
I´ve never seen so many cockroaches in all my life.

This morning, I got up and went to La Fuente de Salud (the Fountain of
Health) which is run by Female Seventh Day Adventists. They have a cafeteria
(a room with a kitchen) and natural supplement store and they give massages
for 110-130 lempira which is the equivalent of 6-7 dollars. Luckily, Juan
Carlos had called ahead for me so they knew that I was wanting to get a
massage because they spoke no English. Everything was completely awkward
once I arrived. Three woman all of about 4´9´´ took me into this room and
just kind of stared at me. There were three padded tables and I assumed I
was supposed to get undressed, but they just stood there and watched
me…luckily I was smart enough to wear my bathing suit, otherwise it would
have been even more awkward. One woman preceeded to give me a massage and
the other two just layed on the tables and talked to her (Dosha it
definitely was not). I chose to be massaged with honey as opposed to lotion
just for the sheer experience of having honey rubbed all over me (I guess it
is supposed to make your skin smoother). The woman practically beat me to a
pulp. At one point, she was rubbing my neck and turned my head so hard and
fast to pop my nect that it shocked the hell out of me. All the women loved
that and proceeded to giggle repeated, especially after she did the other
side as well.

Halfway through the massage, a woman who I later found out was from Mexico
came in and we spoke for a long time (I was just glad to have someone to
speak English with). She asked me a lot about Bush and politics, family,
America versus Mexico, etc. She told me about her husband that was back in
Mexico who was waiting for a liver transplant. Unfortunately for them, it is
very uncommon for Mexicans to be organ donors (I think because of religious
reasons), so even though he is at the top of the list, he has been waiting
for a very long time for a transplant. We talked about our jobs and she told
me that she volunteered for a local radio station in San Pedro and gave
advice (based on the bible) to people who called in with problems. It was so
great talking to her, just to see the perspective of someone who comes from
a completely different background than me.

After my morning massage, I went back to the hostel and Angela called a cab
for me to take me to the bus station. Unfortunately, I´m not having a lot of
luck with cab drivers because they speak no English and I speak very little
Spanish, so they usually get pretty pissed off at me. Even though Angela
told the dispatcher and the cab driver where to go, he still took me to
wrong bus station, but I ended up catching a bus to Puerto Cortes just as it
was leaving. The bus was an experience in itself. I was supposed to take a
direct bus, but since I went to the wrong station I ended up on a bus that
makes frequent stops. The bus driver blared old 80s music through the
speakers (which are located directly above everyones head) and drove as if
it were a race to get to Puerto Cortes, his buddy, who collected money from
the passengers hung halfway outside the door most of the time yelling and
hollering as we drove past bus stops to see if anyone needed to get on. He
would run out, grab the people and then push them as fast as he could onto
the bus as it sped off with him halfway out the door. It was insane. Next,
we got pulled over by the Policia and all the men got off the bus and put
there hands against the side of the bus as the police came through and
checked their IDs. I had no clue what was going on. It seemed that
everything was fine however, because soon after we were on our way again.

So now I am in Puerto Cortes and will probably be spending the majority of
my time in my room, at the internet cafe, or at Wendys until my ferry leaves
for Belize tomorrow. So far I am finding that I am the only gringo here. I´m
hoping that on the ferry I will see more travelers because its really
frustrating not being able to communicate with anyone.

Anyway, I think I´m going to go try to figure out the ferry situation now.
Should be interesting. Hopefully someone can help direct me. Afterwards, I
think I´m going to go take a very long nap because I am absolutely exhausted.

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