“The cows are nice here”
“Yeah, real healthy looking”
And so we enter Honduras. A country where the cows are beautiful, cowboys ride bicycles and weathered gas attendants sling pistols in their belts.
We decide to try and avoid the capital city Tegucigalpa, and soon end up on a gravel road headed north. We stop regularly for directions. The answer is always “directo”, even if we still have to make a few turns. We also stop regularly so the van can cool down. It means that travel is slow and frustrating, but our interactions with locals increase exponentially. One family welcomes us under the shade of their mango tree. They bring us a thick, sweet, hot white drink that we sip slowly. Mark lounges in the hammock. All the while we play I spy, looking for things we know the word for in Spanish and making conversation.
It’s getting dark and the sweat is still pooling in my lower back and behind my knees. Anxiety bubbles in the pit of my stomach. We are still on the gravel road. The bad things I’ve heard about Honduras start to run through my mind “It’s the most corrupt country in Central America”; “It’s dangerous, I just went right through it”. When we finally hit the tarmac, I’m so relieved, but it’s short lived. The paved road just stops and starts. People drive on either side of the road. We dodge bicycles shrouded in darkness.
Eventually we roll into a cheap motel in Comayagua. There is a room use rate and a nightly rate. There are mirrors everywhere. Classy. We sleep like babies.