Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl

12/30/2014 My name is Deb. I’m an addict. I crave PUPPY BREATH, I can’t get enough of it. On Tuesday we met a guy who has a car I am was interested in buying at our mechanic’s. We were to meet Monday but he (the guy with the car) was busy. We met him @ 9 and he and Bill took the Honda CRV out for a test drive, I waited at the mechanic’s. There was a puppy that kept running out from under a car in his shop. I tried to get the pup to come to me but it wouldn’t. Her mother was chained to the wheel of a car, that’s where they lived. Nelson (the mechanic) grabbed the puppy for me. He told me the momma dog bites everyone, that’s why she was chained. He handed the pup to me and she nuzzled into my neck and started licking me; she was perfectly content in my arms. I was totally mesmerized by her puppy breath, I couldn’t tear myself away. It’s an irrestible charm that pups have, once they breathe on you, you’re smitten. I made the comment, “OMG, she is so cute, I could just take her home.” Nelson said, “Lady (his name for me) if you want her you can have her. She doesn’t like most people and she likes you. I know you’ll take good care of her.” Now remember, Bill was out driving the car. He came back and I was holding the puppy, still. He wanted me to drive the car so I passed the puppy off to him, taking a quick inhale of her puppy breath to hold me over as I crawled into the car. I drove the car, it was nice but they want too much for it. But the puppy, she was free and she was adorable. I told Bill that Nelson said we could have her and he asked Nelson if he was serious. Nelson said the same thing about he knows we would take care of her and voilà, we had a puppy. Nelson had already named her Lolita, I can’t take credit for the name, however we have shortened it to Lola. Lola rolls off the tongue easier when you are screaming, DAMMIT LOLA you peed for the 93rd time today on the FLOOR!! DAMMIT LOLA DO NOT SHIT THERE! Lolita doesn’t flow as well.

Lola and Highway
our girl
she adores Highway
she is never far from him
She reeks of cuteness and puppy breath

Due to an instant craving of puppy breath, our lives have changed. Tuesday night was sheer hell. We tried her in a small dog crate on the porch with the boys. She howled for 2 hours and 33 minutes. We brought her in to our bathroom in the crate, she howled. We let her out of the crate and blocked her in the bathroom. She howled. We BROUGHT Highway into the blocked off bathroom area and he was pissed. She howled. That didn’t last long, he went back to the porch. We were up ALL night with the howling yet mesmerizing puppy breathed dog from hell. I kept thinking what have we done. If only my addiction wasn’t so strong. I need detox.

Wednesday we hung out around here and tried to get ticks and fleas off of PB (puppy breath), there were more than normal for a young pup. Her Momma must be infested. We had plans Christmas eve, all planned before Lola arrived. At 5 on Christmas eve we left for a party on John and Susie’s boat with Craig and Cleo .

from their boat
Hummers on Susie’s boat
Hummers, up close and personal
Cleo, Craig and Bill
A boat in the harbor.

Their boat is docked in French Cay. It was a great party, excellent food, they cooked a huge ham that was delicious, lots of drinks and fabulous dessert made by Maddie, the daughter of my island knee doc (from the US.) It was a nice night on the water, we sat on the top deck of the boat and talked and ate and drank. We didn’t stay too long which was fine, we had a puppy in a crate on the porch at home. When we came up the road we could hear her HOWLING!

The second night we put Lola on the back porch with the boys, not in a cage, just chilling with the guys. She was fine until morning. Highway totally digs her 85% of the time but Lucky, not so much. He is not thrilled, he does the damn Elvis lip thing all the time when she comes near. We have been giving Luck, AKA El Gordo, lots of love. He’s feeling a little third wheelish.

Highway, he is smitten. She is a sinister spirit with him. They raise hell together. He flips her body with his snout and she lands on her back and jumps up and attacks him. She hangs from his jowls and she SPINS and totally pinches him. WHO THE HELL TAUGHT HER THAT? SHE IS 8 WEEKS OLD. She is a wild one, OMG. I have a teenager already and it’s a freaking girl. Please no girls, I’m afraid they’ll be like me. (shudder) But she is ours, she pees everywhere and yet her breath is perfect, can’t get enough.

On the puppy proofed porch
bath # 3 in 2 days. This time in original Dawn dish liquid. The fleas were abandoning ship.
The face
Never far from him
Our 3 dogs (again)

It’s very funny  to see Highway like this. He has always been such a wild child. When we took him to the states from Roatan he was 3 months old. He hung on poor Dooce’s face, he bit her ankles, he laid on her head and he bit her tail. All these things are reversed now. He is having them done to him instead of him being the aggressor, he is the attackee. She is the aggressor. Role reversal, she may end up Alpha dog.

Christmas Day we went to Bob and Rosalie’s house with Dave, Trish, Michael and Tasha for Christmas dinner. Bob and Rosalie are from the Vancouver BC area and live on the rock 6 months out of the year. They live in a fab location in Sandy Bay.

Tasha, Michael and Trish.
The Northwestern sky

We had a big turkey dinner at their house and Tasha made dessert, marble cake and Key Lime pie, holy cow, can that girl bake!! Great food, awesome company. We would have liked to stay longer, but with a 30 minute drive ahead of us, we had to leave because of Lola. Puppy hood is not for people who are never home. It’s a commitment. A damn freaking big one. I’m puppy whipped already, I admit it Jeanie!

Friday we were planning to go to Camp Bay with Chuck and Nancy but Lola changed that. We didn’t want to leave her alone for so long and didn’t think she would make the trip well plus she was flea infested. We decided it was best to stay home. We did a tick and flea find and destroy mission, she had so many ticks on her it was crazy. We removed over 20 ticks from her ears alone and they were huge suckers, like a small raisin. She was a mess and she missed her momma.

Tasha was leaving to go back to Toronto the next day, so Trish and Dave and Tasha and Mike came out late afternoon. Tasha really wanted to meet Lola. Bill made a couple pizzas on the grill for dinner and the kids got their fill of our animal kingdom!

On Saturday Bill and I went to visit Chuck and Nancy.  We got to enjoy a late lunch with them, Nancy made a fabulous chicken and eggplant parmigiana. We got to see the first part of the renovation of their social building, it’s going to be a great space!

The new Pergola
View from the current social building to the Bali walk. There will be double doors from the social room to the walkway. It is going to be amazing.
Some of their furniture.
Dinner for 4

We stayed for a few hours and then came home to the menagerie. They only live a short distance from us so it’s a quick trip home.

Sunday was our big day, a first for us, the Radical Catamaran day trip. This was planned over a month ago and I was really needing a water fix. Craig and Cleo were nice enough to come up several times while we were gone and check on Miss Lola. They love dogs and cats and if Lola didn’t have fleas Craig probably would have stolen her.

We met the other boaters and the Free Radical at 9 AM at the Save center dock in Oak Ridge. This is not your average boat, this is an amazing day on the water. This is a 5 ***** excursion. Click here for info on the Radical Catamaran. All the drinks, incredible food and desserts you want. Fantastic staff to wait on you, take your dirty dishes, bring you drinks. Just fabulous. They do an ex-pat special and if you live on the island you can get the reduced rate and bring family members or friends that may be visiting. There was a full boat of people, some we knew, some we didn’t. We set off for the eastern part of the island, stopping at the Cow and the Calf to snorkel. Bill wasn’t sure he wanted to go in so I got ready and jumped in alone to snorkel. I swam over to the rock and started around the one end. I saw fantastic coral, fish and the biggest star fish I have ever laid eyes on.

some kind of coral
coral and a sea fan
Spiny Sea Urchin
Gray Angelfish
Coral with all kinds of stuff growing on it
Biggest starfish, 18″ tip to tip
Feather dusters
Tube sponges I believe

After heading east around the far side of the island I was swimming into the current and thought maybe it wasn’t a good idea to go all the way around alone. What if the boat thought I drowned so they left? I turned around to go back and that’s when I saw the starfish and the Angelfish. Bonus! As I was heading back a guy from the boat in a wetsuit came up to me and asked if I wanted to snorkel around the cow, I said sure, figuring they wouldn’t leave without him! He dove down and got a spiny starfish and told me to hold it so he could take a pic but the pic sucked, so I have a pic of him holding it. It was crawling on my hand and felt really weird.

Spiny starfish
He also gave me this sand dollar but the waves were so ferocious on the way back they broke it.
He had me hold this sea urchin that was alive. I always thought they were poisonous but he said, trust me. It’s spines were stuck in my hand when I went to put it back in the water, I honestly thought I had spines stuck in my hand.
This is the Free Radical owned by Ed and Julie. They are really cool people who circumnavigated the globe in a boat (not this one.) That trip took 5 years! We are sitting on the deck, bottom left in the pic, me, Bill and Trish in her red bikini. All of the photos of the boat were taken by Melanie Wood. We sailed straight toward their dock, thanks Mel!
Sail up for trip home

It was a fabulous day on the water despite the fact my neck was killing me. I think it was from the way I held my head looking at stuff while snorkeling. This is nothing new, my neck has hurt for a long time, this only made it worse. We were whooped when we got home but still had a puppy to take care of.

We ran some errands Monday and took her with us. She seemed to enjoy looking out the window, Bill held her while I ran in for groceries and just as we left the parking lot she puked. Luckily I got her on the car mat, easy to hose off. We were worried about her, she had the butt squirts and then she puked. With no vet on the island for a week I called my niece who is a vet and she gave me some options. Then I got in touch with our friend Kathy who knows a lot about animals. She and her husband were coming to town Tuesday so they stopped and she wormed Lola and gave her some tick and flea stuff and some Immodium to control her squirts. She is still peeing a lot but we can’t deny her water if she has the squirts because she may get dehydrated. After a second dose of Immodium today her squirts are turning into more of a formed poop so she is getting better, We are pretty sure it’s a change of diet thing because she sure doesn’t seem sick at all.

No keeping her out of Highways food dish.
She is ferocious!
Gnawing on his lips
true love
They bring out the beast in each other. Her paw is in his teeth.


She has been doing OK at night on the porch with the boys. Every now and then we’ll hear a sharp reprimanding bark or a snarl but for the most part it’s quiet. This is a clip of Highway and Lola playing on the back porch. They do this outside too and he runs her in circles, rolls her, picks her up off the ground while holding on to the other end of whatever she has in her mouth, he mouths her WHOLE neck and she nips his heels and his neck and ears and lips. True love if I ever saw it.

Tonight is New Year’s eve and like the many NY Eve’s before this one, we are staying home. There is a big party in Calabash and another at Parrot Tree but honestly, when you are awake at 4 AM, 9 PM seems very late. For all of you celebrating tonight stay safe and have a happy prosperous healthy New Year. 2015, bring it on!

P.S. The movie THE INTERVIEW, that was pulled from opening in the US is being shown down here. I saw the ad on Facebook. Only in Honduras!


at MOVIE NIGHT! FRIDAY & SATURDAY at The Pineapple Grill at Clarion Suites Roatan at Pineapple Villas/

Be careful what you wish for


be careful

Sit down, relax, grab a glass of wine or a beer, this is going to be a long one. It’s been a busy week and I have a lot to say!

We are fast approaching Christmas Day, I can’t believe another year is drawing to a close. This is my 3rd Christmas on the rock, the first one I was alone and Bill and I will celebrate # 2 this year. Let me say this, it’s different. There are some decorations in the stores, some homes have lots of lights, friends have big decorated trees but it’s not like in the states. I don’t know if it’s the lack of commercialism or the lack of money but Christmas on this rock is just not the same, and that’s not a bad thing. Here on the island it’s more about the reason for the season. That being said I miss my boys and my parents and all of our family back in the states. I can’t even think about the boys and not get weepy, so many memories, I wish we could be together! Love you Chance and Trace.

Scarlett is STILL in the shop. Our mechanic is unable to get the part from the mainland so we ordered it on Amazon and Trace will bring it down. Until then I will drive the damn car with a leaking wheel cylinder, all it does is make my rear wheel lock up, no biggie. Once the part is put in and the window is fixed we are done with her. She will be sold to the highest bidder. (like there will be more than one)  We already have her replacement in mind and our mechanic will look it over for us tomorrow. Keep body parts crossed, I need reliable wheels.

Sunday was a nice sunny day and we spent it quite leisurely with Nancy and Chuck at Parrot Tree. We met at the Palapa at noon and ate lunch.

View of lagoon from the restaurant

Afterwards we walked up to the pool. Nancy and I sat on the edge and talked and Bill and Chuck laid on a bed chatting.

Bill and Chuck chillin’
The pool is 320′ long

Bill has been hard at work on some storage and a window seat for our bedroom. I do not want my clothes in drawers, normally I would want them hidden due to the visual you get with the clothes out, but not here. It’s insane to have drawers because everything smells old and musty and damp ALL THE FREAKING TIME. AND, the drawers swell up and stick. I reek of Febreeze and/or DEET constantly. Air circulates nicely around this unit. He is making some cool ventilated doors for the bottom and then I will store some containers under there. Ventilation is the name of the game on the rock. That and polyurethane. I plan to poly everything in my house. Everything may be a slight exaggeration but not much. If it stands still, poly. It wards off MOLD.

This is not the final arrangement of the clothes. I need baskets that match.

The pad is temporary (for outdoor furniture), I plan to buy a pad and cover it with some Batik from Umbul Umbul.

We just got the wood for the shelves in the kitchen and it is really wet. It will take a while to get dry enough to use. Nice dried lumber is only a dream here.

Thursday was the kids Christmas party at Fiddler’s Bight. The gifts that were wrapped last Friday at BJ’s were for these kids. We met friends at the bar at 12:30 and were picked up by Franklin in his boat and taken to the Bight.

Michael and Natasha, our friends from Toronto’s kids. This is their second year doing this. The little girl and her family were hitching a ride to the party.
Michael, eating candy.
Our friend Bob from BC with Tasha’s hat on, braids blowing in the breeze. He totally rocked the hat!

We hung out at the bight (bay) waiting for the festivities to begin. While waiting for Santa they told the Christmas story in Spanish while a little girl translated to English. She was so sweet. There was a big Santa pinata and the kids patiently lined up to get their whacks in. The ferocity with which some of them swung the stick was kind of scary!

Santa before he got the shit beat out of him.
The kids waiting for their turn with the pinata.


Shortly after all the candy was scavenged off the ground, Santa arrived, by boat, of course.

Santa                     Photo by Melanie Wood

Santa sat down on his chair and all the kids gathered round and took turns sitting on his lap.

Santa with all the kids.

After that the kids lined up by age and gender and we handed out handmade bags with wrapped gifts in them. Once they got a bag we put an X on their hands to keep it fair. The kids were really cute and most were very polite. When that was all done there was food for the kids and parents so we left and headed back to BJ’s to get our car.

Friday morning we had to get up and get moving. We were helping with Roatan Because we Care or BWC and needed to arrive by 8. We couldn’t do our lazy morning starts, where we eat and read the news online,  I have tea, he has coffee, mosey around, walk the dogs, not this morning. Our friend Cleo went along with us, we were out the door by 7:20 to get to the bodega on the west side of Coxen Hole. This was started 16 years ago by an amazing woman named Nidia Webster. She is an island gal who had a vision to give the poor a Christmas. I don’t know at what point Abraham Bodor joined forces with Nidia. They are a dynamic duo. [The two of them also do TOMS shoe drives (read about TOM’s here ) all over the island, giving new shoes to kids who may have NO shoes.] Over the years BWC has grown so much that people plan their VACATION to be here so they can help out. A guy from Canada and his wife (they played Mr. and Mrs. Claus) and another couple shipped a few hundred beautiful knit dolls and balls for the kids. They were made by church ladies, simply amazing. These 4 came over Christmas to help with BWC. There was a family of 5 from Kelowna BC that were on vacation also. It’s really fantastic to see all the people who care and want to be involved. When it was time to start loading we made a chain and packed the 250 bags that were being delivered that day into the vehicles.


Food chain
Amy, who took most of these photos and said I could share.
This was the first stop, Franco Flats, before the rain started.
It was outside of town on a busy street and the sky opened up and it poured! The road turned into a muddy river.
This was the second stop.
IMG_93822273839102 (1)
This was stop 3 in Brass Hill. We thought we were going to Brazil. These were very very poor kids living very isolated on the top of the hill. I doubt they have running water or electricity, many did not have shoes.
It got kind of crazy, almost mass pandemonium until Nidia took control. Cleo and I were in the middle of the crowd handing out the gifts.
Bill (in the hat) passing out Washington state apples. Abraham in green and Mark.     Photo by Amy M.
IMG_90364065892325 (1)
This photo was taken from FB, shot by Nellie Nelson. Mrs. Claus commented on the photo: My heart broke when I saw this little girl and her brother. They looked to be about 2 and 4 with nobody looking out for them. They were covered in mud and stood alone outside the crowd.

So so sad that so many children have to live like this.

Look at this face.                             Photo by Amy M.
Nidia, Mr and Mrs Claus and Abraham         Photo Amy M.
Knit dolls                        Photo Amy M
Lots of babies and pregnant women                                   Photo Amy M
Nidia, (standing on the truck, yellow top) has a list of who gets a bag and they have to be present with their ID or they don’t get the food. Very organized. My friend Cleo on the R.                          Photo by Amy M

We told Abraham if they needed help on Monday we were available but we couldn’t help Saturday, we had plans. We spent Saturday afternoon in Sandy Bay with our friends Trish and Dave. Bob and Rosalie came over also. (We were with them and Trish and Dave’s kids on Thursday.) We had a nice afternoon sitting out on the deck with a stunning view of the north shore. You can see forever, really beautiful and I took no photos. Lame.

We were going to go to a gringo ex-pat beach party out at Camp Bay if we weren’t going to deliver food again, however they messaged us saying we were needed. The party sounds like a good one, they take games, chairs, BBQ’s and probably {a little} beer and spend the day on the beach. Next time we’ll make it out there for sure!

Despite the 3 hour nap I took with Emmy yesterday, I was tired and dreaded the thought that I had to move early again in the morning. This time BWC will be delivering to the east of our house, should be another fun day making kids smile. For these kids, something so little and insignificant can mean so much.

We left the house at 7:20  headed for the bodega. As soon as we got there we loaded our truck with 35 bags and made an early morning run to Corozal. They tried to deliver food to this group Saturday but the neighborhood representative didn’t have the list, so no food.

She had a squash?? an apple, a bag of candy, and a knit doll in her hands.
The shoes were a little big.
The house was vacant, except for the squatters.
There was a different Santa today, “Sully.” He has done this gig many times before. He must have been melting in the velour suit because as soon as he was done handing out the candy he was back in the AC in his truck.

Second stop was very close to Franco Flats outside of Coxen Hole.


After that we headed to Crawfish Rock. I’ve heard of this place but never been there, and now I know why. It’s a long bumpy drive down. If I could show you the places we have been on a map you wouldn’t believe it. Part of the excitement for me was getting to see where all these places are.

The lady in pink was funny, she was after a man. They all knew her. It’s her thing.
Look at these children. Look at their sweet faces. So cute I can’t stand it. No shoes.
Passing out bags, they didn’t get them unless they said Gracias or Thank you! Nidia (Superwoman) is standing in the truck.
A house down in Crawfish Rock.

Next stop for the day was near Oak Ridge, actually it may have been Lucy Point. There were a LOT of kids and adults waiting for Santa and for their bags of food. Same rules, they must say Gracias or Thank You. Take note of all the SMALL CHILDREN AND BABIES. Do they not understand what it is they’re doing that causes them to have so many kids?


The next visit for us was Pandy Town. I thought there were a lot of people at the last stop, but Pandy Town was craaazy!

Guard dog
Walking into the basketball court
Babies babies everywhere. Babies with babies. Babies having babies.
The apple was huge!

BWC was going out to Punta Gorda after this stop but we had to leave, someone was coming to our house so we had to get home.

Christmas tree in “town.” I wonder if the packages are wrapped cinder blocks?
On the way to PandyTown we noticed this pole that had been hit(?) and was leaning. The big wire must have been laying on the road.
But no worries, they tied it to a tree. It’s just how we roll in Roatan.
Oak Ridge
Take the time to notice how they painted the word RESTAURANT. Afreakingmazing.
I’m happy this looks unoccupied.

So, yeah, it’s been a busy week but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Seeing these children and their families really puts things into perspective. Most people in the US are so busy acquiring “stuff” that they don’t even realize what they have. These people have nothing but they keep on going. They keep on trying to make a life, be it what it may. They know nothing of the lives of excess that so many other people live.

We have so much and we need so little.

Merry Christmas to all our friends and families. Sending much love to everyone.



Tin tintinnabulums


12/13/14  Today will be the last time until 1/2/34 that there will be a date with sequential numbers.

Not a whole lot of shaking going on down here. My car is still in the shop. It spends more time there than it does in my driveway. Unfortunately the previous owner of my car thinks he is a mechanic and did some work on Scarlett and we have done nothing but fix his mistakes. Recently, I spent quite a bit of money and 3 weeks downtime getting the bushings replaced in my rear end. Well, not MY rear end but Scarlett’s. Bill knew they were bad and we hoped that would quiet some of the noise from the trunk. It didn’t. They then fixed an exhaust leak. Still noisy. Now they found the shock that was replaced a year ago was put in wrong. The drivers side window on my car no longer works. Bill tore it apart to try and fix it but it’s not fixable. We have ordered the switch to repair it and Trace will bring it down when he comes.  This is what the inside of a car door looks like if you ever were curious and I did drive my car a few times like this until I couldn’t get the door opened from the INSIDE. Lucky for me (and Bill) that I was home when that happened. He has that issue fixed also, another prior mechanic screw up.


Last Friday we went to Susan’s house for a late lunch with Chuck and Nancy and Susan and her friend Kate. We ate at the table on the deck and afterwards we sat around the table talking. All of a sudden there was a crack and a whoosh from under the deck. It was LOUD, like a crack of lightning. First thought was that the cistern blew a hole but when we went down under the deck and were assaulted by the smell we knew it was the septic pipe that had broken. Holy shit. Literally. It was fixed before we left.

Bill was there but he was taking the pic.

On Saturday we went to Liz’s so Bill could follow up on her dryer repair. I got lots of plant cuttings from her while we were there. It’s so easy to start things on the island and this is the perfect time of year to plant. As soon as we got home Craig came out and asked us if we could go down to near Coco View as Cleo had been in an accident. Craig has been really sick with a bronchial virus so we jumped back in the truck and headed down. When you have a narrow winding 2 lane road with a pot hole big enough for a baby hippo covering one lane of the road, hello. Accident producer. The accident is the fault of the municipality. Seriously, it is. They don’t fix the damn potholes on this island correctly so they keep re-appearing. Luckily Cleos’ crash was minor. The truck in front of her stopped to proceed slowly over a huge pothole and she stopped in time but the roads were wet and slick and she skidded into the back of his truck. No injuries, minimal damage but a huge pain in the ass. They had to wait for the Transit Police to come investigate. This took over 1 hour. One hour in which there were 3 cars (hers, the other guy and our truck) blocking one whole lane on the only road on the island. When the police (sic) finally came they measured all kinds of goofy shit and I’m pretty sure they did this only because they had a fancy tape measure. Then they gave Cleo a form to  fill out and they took her drivers license. When the cops were done she asked for her license back and they said they would give it to her at the hearing on Monday. WTH? They kept the license? I’ve never heard of such a thing. She took an island friend with her on Monday and did the court thing, paid $30.00 (her fine) got her license back and that was it.  Only in Honduras.

The lack of sunshine the past few weeks has forced me to cook more than usual, which means I might have prepared a meal or two. The other morning I made dog biscuits and scrambled my weekly amount of eggs and made brown rice for my every morning breakfast tortilla wrap. I also made a big pot of carrot soup. I forgot how much I love that stuff and how easy it is to make. The carrots they have down here are big and ugly and so damn sweet that you would be crazy to buy the prepared baby carrots in a bag.  Bill is the dog food chef and made a big batch for them too. He browns ground beef in coconut oil, adds rice, green beans, garlic and carrots and cooks it for awhile. We then mix that with a cup of Kirkland brand dry dog food and it disappears from their bowls in a matter of minutes. Not a speck left. It’s crazy that we can buy Kirkland (Costco) stuff down here. It’s ridiculously expensive but it’s the stuff with the least amount of crap in it and now the boys won’t eat anything else. Between their fancy schmancy meals, their home made dog biscuits and their breakfast of yogurt, these boys are well fed. Lucky, or El Gordo is proof that they eat well, they both eat the same amount and are the same size but Luck is gaining weight and Highway is still skinny, of course he is 3 years younger too. And hyper.

This is dog food!
And dog biscuits.

On Wednesday Cleo and Craig came over b/c Stef and Brian  were stopping by to introduce us to Brian. He will be house sitting Stef and Jurgens’ home while they are in Germany. She wanted him to meet the others in the “Hood” since he will be here for the next 6 months and he will be the man that controls the water when our cistern is low and we need some water pumped from the well. We had a nice visit with them, Stef told us some more of the things they experienced on the island in the last 15 years. Some stories you don’t believe because they are so crazy, but, they are all true. You can’t make this shit up. Right Lin Coyle?

Thursday Cleo and I went shopping for Christmas gifts for the kids in Oak Ridge. There is an area that is extremely poor and the local ex-pats get lots of gifts and wrap them to give to the kids when Santa comes. I spent a lot more than I planned on but it’s for a good cause. When I stop and think about the Christmas mornings our kids had compared to these children, how can you not buy things for them?

Friday was the gift wrap day @ BJ’s. Cleo and I were pulling out of our driveway and noticed this going on. A Honduran had somehow flipped a big SUV on the curve. We went up to see if everyone was OK and were told someone was still in the car. I called Stef and asked her to call the police. She managed to get the Bomberos and an ambulance dispatched. Then they told us there wasn’t anyone in the truck.

Their window sticker said Garifuna so I assume the drivers were natives. Happy nobody was hurt!

We left and headed to BJ’s. This is the hang out in Oak Ridge that is on the water and the expats have a band called the Banditos who play every Friday afternoon.

The Banditos

We got there around noon and started wrapping.

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The bags on the table were sewn by the east end ladies and the gifts will be distributed in them on the 18th when Santa comes.



My friend Keri from Snohomish Wa. and her husband are down here so I got to meet Doug and hang out with Keri. She is the one who got me interested in the Pastafarians. They live right on the water and she has a resident octopus hanging by her steps. This is what he looks like when he’s going to church. His species is a Pastafarian Octofarian.


Once the gifts were all wrapped and put in the handmade bags we hung out and played a crazy Christmas game that Marilyn made. She taped small green Christmas tree cutouts all around the outdoor bar, inside the bar, in the bathrooms, everywhere.

Men’s urinal

Each of the 20 trees had a clue. We were given a sheet with 20 lines to put the answers. Goal was to find all 20 clues and decipher the answers. Below are the clues and the answers, these are not exactly the same but pretty close. It was lots of fun but we couldn’t find a few of the clues and we didn’t win!!

One of the clues

Quadruped with crimson proboscisRudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer

5 p.m. to 6 a.m. without noise Silent Night

Miniscule hamlet in the far east O Little Town of Bethlehem

Ancient benevolent despot Good King Wenceslas (or some believe in Jolly Old St. Nicholas)

Adorn the vestibule Deck the Halls

Exuberance directed to the planet Joy to the World

Listen, aerial spirits harmonizing — Hark the Herald Angels Sing

Monarchial trio — We Three Kings

Yonder in the haystack — Away in a Manger

Assemble, everyone who believes — Come All Ye Faithful

Hallowed post meridian — O Holy Night

Fantasies of a colorless December 25th — I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas

Tin tintinnabulums — Silver Bells

A dozen 24-hour Yule periods — The Twelve Days of Christmas

Befell during the transparent bewitching hour — It Came Upon a Midnight Clear

Homo sapien of crystallized vapor — Frosty the Snowman

I merely desire a pair of incisors — All I want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth

I spied my maternal parent osculating a fat man in red — I Saw Mama Kissing Santa Claus

Perambulating through a December solstice fantasy — Walking Through a Winter Wonderland

Aloft on the acme of the abode — Up on the Rooftop

We got home around 3 and hung out waiting to go to Stef’s going away party at Cal’s. I am still having coughing fits, coughing that will not stop. Last night was one of those nights. We got to Cal’s around 5:30, starving. The place was packed, which means it would take over 45 minutes to get food, I was hacking my lungs up like a person who has smoked all of their lives (I quit in 1973, when I was 3 years old) so we turned around and came home and ate dinner. Bummed that we didn’t make it to dinner but who wants to sit with someone who sounds like they should live in an iron lung?

After dinner Bill sat down to watch some TV and I took my laptop in the bedroom and watched a movie on Amazon Prime. Exciting Friday night at our house!

Just a few more pics and I’m outta here.

O Christmas tree
I can’t believe this LED tree still works. I bought it when I was shopping with Sharon Prouty-Hall in the early 2000’s. Amazing to have something like this last for so long.


The other shelf unit is done and in place. Now he is working on the window seat between the shelves under the window.

One of the customs down here is setting off fire crackers ALL THE FREAKING TIME between Halloween and Groundhog day. The other night the church sermon was going on, they were really into it and quite loud, pianos, singing, Hallejuah! BOOM, a fire cracker would go off. Hallejuah, BOOM, another fire cracker. It was almost like a punctuation point after Hallejuah, BOOM.

Thanks Craig for the visual. They are going off again, about every 30 seconds. What is the joy or excitement over a damn BOOM???

I would like to take those damn firecrackers and put them somewhere special. Real special.

Happy rest of the weekend!



Queen of dirt

void 12/5/2014 After a few weeks of wild and crazy weather, torrential rains, leaking windows, overflowing cisterns and Thanksgiving dinner, add to all of that losing the most amazing dog ever to grace our home, I’m ready for a do over. It’s been pretty sucky in Paradise. I previously wrote a post describing in detail what happened from the day we realized Dooce was sick until the moment she died. It was morose, morbid and grueling in detail. It was cathartic, for me. I will keep it close to my heart but not post it. Let me just say that Bill and I lost the dog of our dreams. Dooce was an amazing animal, strong, obedient, gentle and nurturing. She raised Highway from the time he was 3 months old, she loved him with all of her heart, despite the fact that he bit her ankles and hung from her neck with his teeth. He snarled, growled, snapped, bit, howled and whined at her. She accepted it, she loved him. My heart hurts for Highway, for what he lost. He adored her. RIP Dooce, you’ll never be replaced.

Highway 3 months old, biting at Dooce. 03/2013
He never backed down, she was 4 times his size.
What a gorgeous dog. She was Malamute, Shepherd and Chow. (She had a black spotted Chow tongue) 100# of muscle
She dealt with him as best she could.

We miss her so much every day, it’s a void that won’t be filled for a long time. On to more pleasant things. It may not be official, (yet) but I am positive I have won the title of THE DIRTIEST WINDOWS, SCREENS AND WINDOW TRACKS IN THE CARIBBEAN. What an honor! I didn’t get a crown yet but I think I will soon. I mean. What a freaking distinction!! I am humbled. And repulsed and disgusted. Yvonne, you warned me. You were right, it’s never ending and it’s thankless!!

Gross and disgusting
Bug wings all over

How many times are you expected to clean your windows? Weekly? I DID NOT sign up for that. In Washington I did them 2 times a year. That’s all. Living in a veritable PARADISE there is no such thing as a damn clean window. I surrender. They are dirty BUT I can still see out of them so we’re good. On Sunday we were supposed to go to Nancy and Chuck’s with Susan and her friend and some others for fondue. Neither Bill nor I were in a socializing frame of mind, having buried Dooce in the morning so we didn’t go. Turns out Nancy was under the weather also, we rescheduled. Bill has half the shelf unit done in the bedroom and is working on the other side. On Wednesday he had Craig help him carry part of the shelf unit for the bedroom upstairs. I was so excited to put stuff on it and clean up the closet! Once I cleaned up the whole cake baking mess I dumped the big basket of my underwear (why do I have almost 30 pair of undies) on the bed and started going through it and there were THOUSANDS of ANTS, on my bed and in my underwear. ANTS IN MY PANTS. That’s why there were ants in the closet! I threw the ant covered undies in the sink and washed the ants off, screaming the whole time for Bill. Then I took the whole basket of underwear and threw it in the washer in HOT water. OMG, so many ants on my bed! We have been having a problem with ants in the whole house recently so we have declared war. We put Terro ant poison all over the counters and this is what happened.

All taking poison back to the bitch queen

One night of thousands of ants and now hardly any. That shit works. It’s been a blustery week or two. We were pummeled by a storm over Thanksgiving and it was nasty outside. The waves on the north shore were quite large for Roatan waves, at least Lucky is having fun surfing.

This isn’t Lucky but Craig sent it to me saying SURF’S UP!

The days before Thanksgiving our power was flickering but I attributed it to the wind and the approaching storm. Flickering to the point it was almost like a light show back in the 70’s. {When I was only 7.} Turns out it was just 4 homes with the power problem and RECO came and fixed it. We had 23″ of rain in November. That is a LOT of rain. On Nov. 27th this was posted on a Roatan FB page: SOS. Help needed immediatly at Sundancer in Sandy Bay as a boat load of Cubans(12-15) just came ashore and are wet,weak and cold. They are in desperate need of dry clothes and towels, food and water. Abraham is out on the beach helping them and needs these items. Immigrations has been called but busy with cruise ships. Please grab anything that you can and head over to Sundancer dock ASAP. Some may need transport to hospital. Will keep you updated as the info comes in. These poor people arrived in the midst of our Norther. The big ferry boat between here and the mainland wasn’t running that day due to the weather but this boat managed to make it.

They were spotted trying to get through the break in the reef so 2 kayakers went out to help them get to shore.

10690357_580397868759578_3791977100629175009_n - Copy They all were given a place to stay and the people on the west end of the island gathered food and clothing for them. One of the big restaurants had some turkeys left over from Thanksgiving which they donated. I read that their papers were processed already but I don’t know if any will remain here or if their desire is still to reach the USA. Fabulous response by the people here on the island. We didn’t have power on turkey Thursday so Thanksgiving was postponed. The power came on late in the day and went off again Thursday night from around 8 until 10 the next morning. 14 hours, no power. Once RECO came for the 2nd time in 24 hours power was restored and our bird was stuffed and in the oven. John and Craig and Cleo came for Thanksgiving dinner. We had a great meal, lots of good food and friends to share it with. Only thing missing was our boys and families. After dinner we watched Planes Trains and Automobiles, a perfect turkey day movie. Saturday until Wednesday are being passed over. Dooce was buried Sunday morning with Miguel and Craig and Cleo with us. It’s great to have friends that care, somehow it helps to share the pain. Monday and Tuesday we sat and stared at the walls, depressed, pissed and hurting. Wednesday my car was done.  Three weeks. We took Emmy to the vet for her shots in the morning and then picked up Scarlett.  Emmy was loose in my car on the way home and was rather insistent on standing on my lap and looking out my window. I mean, there is a back window and a front and 3 other empty available windows to look out: but she wants mine. It was raining buckets and I kept trying to get her to move but that didn’t work very well. After one drive home I was not happy with my car, I think it still makes too much noise and rattles. Now we think it’s the shock. It goes back in the shop tomorrow. I got to drive it home from the garage and will drive it back tomorrow, that’s all I’ve driven it for 3 weeks.  So, no car again. She is such a slut. (the car) Thursday Susan and her friend Kate picked me up to go to Nancy’s for an ART day. Jeanie and Maggie were there and Nancy and the 3 of us. We had snacks on the porch and then went to the art studio. I worked on some scrapbook stuff, Susan did a painting of her cat, Jeanie did several awesome drawings and Maggie was drawing Pelicans. It was a great day. After several hours in the art studio we went downstairs for some of Nancy’s KILLER margarita’s and more snacks. I had 1 drink and OMG! It was a fun afternoon with fun women!

Snacks and drinks
Margarita time!
The studio
These are painting knives. I’ve never used them but Nancy and I are going to do some stuff with them. It really sounds interesting and I’m looking forward to it.
Nancy and Chuck are both artists. Nancy makes amazing jewelry and Chuck paints.
Their Balinese compound
The porch
The view of the North shore

We ran in to town one day looking for some DVD’s but they didn’t have Gone Girl yet. We’re going to start getting them on a memory stick instead of actual DVD’s, third world country or not!

This photo is in downtown Coxen Hole. It says No Parking
WTH kind of a name is this?

I just volunteered to be a greeter at the Roatan airport on their busy days. The last time I flew back here I was greeted by scowling faces at immigration. Out of the 4 people there the only smiling face was Daine Etches. I realized what an impact that had on people coming here, especially for the first time. When Cleo told me about this opportunity, I was on it! I think it will be a lot of fun, I’m excited! I was looking for something the other day and came across this hair clip. These things aren’t easy to find here. Since 99.99% of the time I have my hair in one of these or an elastic hair band, I covet them. As soon as I saw it, I grabbed it and STUCK IT ON THE SIDE OF MY HEAD. I mentally told myself that I needed to remember to remove it before we went to the store. Well, guess what, I forgot. Yes, I went to the grocery store and the pharmacy with this big black clip randomly stuck on the side of my head, my hair was in a ponytail. The clip was NOWHERE near the ponytail. I was not alone in the store, Bill was with me but not once did he say, “What the hell is that thing on the side of your head?” He DIDN’T MENTION IT. Why the hell not? I normally don’t go out with a big hair clip stuck randomly on the side of my head. Thankfully, I’m on the rock and I doubt anyone thought anything about it. IMG_5236 I wouldn’t be surprised if someone noticed me and thought it was a new cool fashion trend and they will all start wearing ginormous clips in random spots on their head. I’ve started a fashion trend. I’m kind of fun like that.  

Iceberg floating

guilt trip

11/23/2014 We have fire ants. In our house. I’ve publicly said it. OMG. I was refilling the hummingbird feeder today and unscrewed the bottom to clean it out at the kitchen sink and there were lots of bugs. Normal. BUT, they weren’t winged bugs, nope, they are red and big and mean as shit looking. They be FIRE ANTS. I naturally freaked and Bill came over to the sink to help me, but the little shits were running all over the counter. I grabbed my stainless steel measuring cup and was beating them with it. Bill yelled at me and said I was acting like there was a lion lose. He said I PUSHED him out of the way, I didn’t touch him, I was too busy beating the little bastards to death. A lion at least you can see, these, not so much. They all met their match with the garbage disposal, or so I thought. I found one crawling on the counter, knocked it to the floor and sprayed it with Deet and squished it in a paper towel. Ants will be the bane of my existence. Aaaah, life in paradise.

I am still car less, maybe because we are dumb gringos, maybe. We have been taking our vehicles to Nelson behind the chicken (Pollo Rey) store in Las Fuertes. My car has a crappy rear end and we want to get the bushings replaced. He quoted us a price and said a week and it would be done. PREVIOUSLY, we have given him a down payment but this time he didn’t ask. We, being dumb gringos assumed it was because he knew we would pay, no problem. Dropped my car off and left. After a week Bill called to see how it was going and he HAD NOT TORN MY CAR APART YET, HE NEEDED A DOWN PAYMENT. WTF? We would have gladly paid him, he never asked and my car has been sitting there 1 week now. We took him the $$ the next morning and he said he would get the parts on the ferry to the mainland the next day. Now, almost a week later, the people on the mainland have not replaced the bushings yet. I want my car, DAMMIT!

We had some crazy weather on Wednesday, the wind was howling, it was raining sideways, we had 3″ of rain between midnight and 7 AM Wednesday morning. It kept right on blowing until Thursday late morning when it cleared and the sun came out. Wednesday afternoon Nancy and Chuck were stopping by. Chuck has yet to see the house and was really anxious to see all the concrete work and the staining Bill did. Bill helped Chuck with a garage door issue and Chuck, artist that he is, painted this for Bill.


Really cool painting, we need to find a frame for it. Chuck and Nancy visited for a few hours and when they left it was starting to pour again and the wind was picking up a LOT! Another stormy night, another cistern filling to overflowing night. We’ll take it.

Bill is working on the storage unit and window seat he is building for the bedroom, I can’t wait until it’s done and I can clean out my closet.  There will actually be room in there soon.

Thursday we ran to the store and bought all of our Thanksgiving needs, we got the biggest turkey there and it’s small compared to what we usually have, but it will do. Our neighbors Craig and Cleo are coming and bringing a friend, along with John, the guy we rented from (and they are now renting from) and we invited Stefi also. Thinking about some Planes Trains and Automobiles for dessert, along with coconut carrot pineapple walnut cake.

Ah, Stefi. This is another story and a sad one. Stef and Jurgen live one driveway away from us, they are one of the original couples in the HOOD, they have been on the island a long time. I met them in 2012 when I was living down here and then Bill and I met them again soon after we moved permanently in 2013. They are the neatest couple, so easy going and lots of fun to be around. Their island stories would make a great book. We got to know them much better over the past 13 months and always looked forward to spending time with them. Now they are leaving due to some health issues, and going back to Germany. Seriously sad about this. On Friday night there was a going away party for Jurgen because he was leaving on Sunday. The party started at Cal’s and moved down to the Palapa. We were going to that but we also went over on Friday morning for coffee and to see him before he leaves. Jurgen and I are Facebook buddies, we chat all the time, for long periods of time. He is also the guy I rode with to the Cattleya School, they are the kind of people you feel lucky to have for friends. Stefi is still here and leaving mid December. Yes, there is still Facebook but it’s not near as good as spending time with someone, that beats everything hands down. Stef and Jurgen, you will be greatly missed!

The party at the Palapa was fun, they have Karaoke on Friday nights and there were lots of people there.

Part of the crowd, Craig, Kevin and Jurgen. No clue what Craig is doing. We usually don’t ask,
Bill and Ronnie (HOOD members also) singing.
I believe Craig thought Jurgen was Santa
Maybe I’m supposed to stop taking photos!
Craig, Bill, Ian standing; Patricia (Ian’s mom) Jurgen and Bill K
I was quizzing him, he MAY have been Santa
Really sad to see them go!

Just for Jurgen, I re-organized my pantry. He is always giving me crap about it, needs alphabetized, it’s messy, whatever. Jurgen, it’s not alphabitized but it’s organized.

Veggies, snacks, pastas, all together..
It stays like this until Bill cooks.

Saturday was a TOWN HALL meeting for Santos Guardiolas, which is the half of the island that we live on. They were dedicating the land they purchased to build a station for the Bomberos, the Fire Department.

It was funny, the ex-pats all sat on one side. We weren’t the smart ones though because the sun was frying those of us sitting on the west. I felt like I was melting and there was no air moving at all.
Craig and Cleo, our partners in crime and our friend Liz.

The Mayor has some good ideas but all during his talk I heard the non spoken words of, your taxes will be going up. No biggie, they are very low as it is. They have to get $$ somewhere. It just amazes me how this country is run, it’s no wonder corruption and political greed is the name of the game. You pay, you play.

Today, Sunday, was gorgeous, I washed all the towels and hung them over the wooden deck railings to dry. {I don’t have enough line space for them and sheets.} First I had to clean all the lizard poop off the railings, that’s usually the high point of my day. Around 1:30 I went down to John’s pool with my raft. The pool looked great, the water was cold but I’ve been in colder, Rock Run in PA and Lake Whatcom and the N. fork of the Nooksack River in WA. The sun hadn’t yet made it up over the trees because this time of year it’s low in the sky. Cleo came down and hung out with me and soon Craig came down too.  We sadly waved goodbye to our buddie Jurgen as the United plane flew past on the way to Houston. A little after 2 there was a small speck of sun on the pool so we stuck our feet in and soon after that there was S U N! We got on our rafts and floated.  I got out of the pool once to call Bill and ask him to bring me a bottle of ice water from the house.  We floated until around 4:30, what a nice lazy way to spend a November Sunday afternoon.

North shore view
Two of the Sirens, missing Jeanie or JV as she is so affectionately known.
We broke up the icebergs to get in on this 84 degree day. You can see our house in this picture too.

Before I forget, I am a guinea pig, well, I am offering myself as one for my KNEE. The GARM clinic here on the island has an Orthopedic specialist who likes to try new stuff. That’s why he is opening a regenerative medicine clinic here on Roa. He has me on some stuff called Neoplasnet. I put a drop under my tongue 4 times a day. Yep, that’s the truth. It comes in a clear vial with a dropper, if the dropper touches anything, you have to throw out the whole bottle. From a knee doc appointment I went to see Dr. Rafael at the Chamber (hyperbaric chamber for divers with the bends.) I figured he saw enough people with ear problems, being the doc for Anthonys Key Resort, that maybe he could figure out my ear thing. He says there is no glaring issue but it still pops every time I swallow. He did say I can snorkel, but no diving down under water while snorkeling. He put me back on Cephalexin and an inhaler. It’s been almost a week, no change. UGH.

If you haven’t noticed, I changed the name of my blog to Mermaid on a Raft. I thought it was more appropriate, more fitting. I will also be writing for Women Who Live on Rocks, yay, so excited about this new part of blogging. Stay tuned..

I’m off to the shower and then going to bed. It’s tough living in Paradise but someone has to do it.

I do it so well.

Psycho babble


11/16/2014   I had the pleasure of riding with my buddy Jurgen a week ago Friday. He drives the bus for the Cattleya school, which is a school for physically and mentally challenged children. The regular schools on the island can barely educate a child with normal needs let alone one with special needs. Once all the students were picked up he dropped them off at their school in French Cay. I spent the afternoon at the school with their sweet teacher Erica. There were 7 kids and 2 of them were the younger siblings of the special needs students and only were there for something to do. The one little girl was a huge helper with her older sister. These kids are awesome, I fell in love. They are so happy to be there and to have things to do. My only issue is the huge handicap I HAVE. I don’t speak Spanish and I really need to work on that ASAP if I want to be a part of this. I planned to go back this past week but Scarlett (my wretched poor white trash car) is in the shop AGAIN. This time it’s her rear end. Hopefully next week.

I learned another new lesson this week, fresh coconut is not always the best thing to bake with. I mean FRESH, cut from the coconut that fell off the tree and shredded finely. I planned to take some coconut macaroons to Chuck and Nancy’s for a get together on Sunday. Yeah, well, not going to happen. I did not drain or bake the coconut and that was stupid on my part. I should have GOOGLED, “How to bake with fresh coconut” first. I did not. I got the cookies made and in the oven and all the coconut milk cooked out and all over the pans and it turned into a congealed mess. I needed a machete to get the freaking things off the pan. They were not cooked but were a gooey expensive mess (full of almonds) that I threw in the garbage and vowed never to make them again, especially NOT with fresh coconut.

The coconut thing kind of pissed me off so I went to Parrot Tree pool to while away the afternoon. I was the only person there until the silence was broken by a screaming child. I don’t mean crying, I mean full on screaming because her damn flip flop came off while she was sitting by the side of the pool. It didn’t piss me off that she was crying, what did piss me off is that the 2 older girls with her ignored her and just LET HER SCREAM. Annoying. Finally they put her damn shoe on her. I noticed as they were entering one of the condos that they left their trash floating in the pool. First a screaming child, then litterers. I got back in the pool and got their cups and water bottles out and threw them in the trash cans. Man, I hate people who expect others to clean up after them. It seems to be the mentality around this island and it infuriates me. Every day I see people throw shit out of their car, RECO (electric company) trucks, cabbies, tourist vans, you name it, just toss it. Someone else will pick it up for you. PMO, BT. (piss me off, big time!)

After 4 hours at the pool I decided to go home and think of something else to bake. On the way I swung by Walter’s to say hello. He and QuiQay were there, Walter was making stew and QuiQay was cleaning out the fridge. I sat and chatted with them for a bit and Walter invited us to dinner that evening. I came home, showered and made a salad and dressing for the meal at Walter’s. We got there around 6 and were surprised to see 2 other vehicles there. I hoped I had enough salad! Nancy and Chuck were there and Myrt and his wife Edith. We had a great dinner and sat around the table talking for quite awhile. Myrt and Edith were telling us some stories about the crocodiles on the island. Edith was pretty hysterical to listen to and their stories are right out of the “you can’t make this shit up” book. All in all, a very fun evening.

Walter took this photo celebrating his official “housewarming” dinner party.

Sunday morning I decided to bake apple nut bread so Bill ran to the store for me to get what I was lacking for the recipe. It turned out yummy so I took a few slices down to John while it was still warm. At 4:00 we rode over to Chuck and Nancy’s with Craig and Cleo and a plate of apple nut bread. Nancy was making her killer Margaritas and Pina Coladas and had a variety of yummy snack items for us. We sat out on their deck overlooking Milton Bight and talked for several hours.

Chuck, one of the hosts, on the left, Craig on the right.
Bill kind of unknowingly photobombed this one.
Nancy and Cleo
My favorite chairs from Umbul Umbul,  I wish they were mine.
Their side deck
On the steps to the art studio.
A view of Milton Bight and my friend Annie’s home.

Have I mentioned that I stopped drinking alcoholic beverages? Contrary to popular belief, I never drank that much. I am too much of a control freak and I don’t like not remembering the night before. (Yes, I have experienced those things in a previous life and once at Parrot Tree pool recently.)  I usually only have one vodka per night, on a rare occasion I would have 2 and never finish the second. If I’m drinking wine, I drink more. This, I believe, is because it’s easy. Just pour, or in the case of me being lucky and having some Bandit, just sip out of the carton. Anyhow, the night Stef and Jurgen came for dinner was the last I drank and that was 10/30. It doesn’t bother me not to drink and I like that. I have been chugging copious amounts of water though, which is not a bad thing. Despite the fact Walter had wine for me and I love Nancy’s Margaritas, I stuck with water. I don’t plan to never drink again, just not nightly.

Since it is the rainy season it has been kind of cool, like in the upper 70’s. Don’t laugh and make fun of me. If you are used to 88 degree days and then have the temp drop 15 degrees, it’s cold. We went to the store to get stuff to make a crock pot of chicken stew, some French onion soup and I wanted to bake pumpkin muffins with cream cheese icing. I actually put on a pair of capris and a cotton sweater. By the time we got out of the grocery store the sun was out and it was hot. So much for chilly soup weather. We made the onion soup and the pot of stew anyhow and I was back in a sleeveless dress in a heartbeat.

My legs were almost covered, a real rarity on the island.

The baking bug has bitten me in the ass recently. When my boys were young I baked all the time. I was skinny then, it didn’t matter. Then I stopped baking because if I bake it, I eat it. Not a good thing. The other day I decided to bake an old favorite, a recipe Cathy Hurvitz gave me years ago, pumpkin bread. I made cupcakes instead and also made a from scratch cream cheese frosting. I’ve since gained 7.5#’s in each butt cheek. But, OMG, they are yummy.

I drug some of my scrapbooking stuff upstairs the other day. I’m not sure why but I ended up making a few things; however I no longer have the overwhelming desire to do it. I think it’s possibly the lack of available supplies here and if I use what I have, I won’t have any more. It is the reason there is still one box of Bandit still in the pantry. If I drink it I won’t have any more. I know, it’s a mental issue thingie. Just another to add to the sordid list that are my brain malfunctions.

We took the boy dogs to the vets for their shots. The Doc was not there yet so we had to wait for quite awhile. Lucky of course, was polite and well mannered. Then there was Highway who is such a blundering idiot that I am embarrassed he is mine. See the little red spot under his eye? He gets these pustule sores every now and then and we have to put him on Cephalexin for 5 days and they go away. This is also something that the vets in the US couldn’t figure out, even after we spent $5000.00. So he gets sores, he gets meds and they go away. Most expensive pot licker dog in the universe, and he’s mine. Yippee shit. Lucky has been chewing his paw and he has a sore there. The vet gave me a scrip for a spray for it. That one is healing but now he has one on his butt. I’m not sure if they are hot spots or what. I’ll keep treating this one too and if it’s not better he goes back to the vet on Wed. We have to go anyhow because Dooce and Emmy need their shots too. Three dogs and a cat is too much for one trip. It took 2 people to hold Lucky on the table for his shots and his heart worm test. I could barely contain Highway who couldn’t understand why Luck was on the table getting attention and he was on the floor. He had already had his shots but he kept trying to get back on the table with Luck. I had to take him outside.

Both of the boys, Highway has fits when he sees another dog and barks and growls and slobbers. Luck is all, so what, it’s a dog..

I took half a dozen cupcakes to the vet too. Kevin, the one assistant wasn’t there so it was just Bethany and Dr. Calderone who got the treats. She said they were “finger licking.” I need to do that more often because I really appreciate the fact that he comes over here weekly to doctor our animals. He’s a great guy! Kevin, his assistant is trying to raise the money to attend veterinary school on the mainland. It will cost him around $6000.00 a year for room and board, he also has a partial scholarship. He is from Roatan and his family does not have the means to send him to school. The Roatan Humane Society is trying to help him as much as possible. His dream is to come back to the island and be a full time vet and it is so needed. Kevin has a heart of gold and will do an excellent job, here’s hoping he can raise the money!

I have been allowing Emmy to get into the routine of jumping out the window in the morning and exploring the porch. That is until the other day when I forgot she was out there. When I went to look in her normal spot, she wasn’t there. Luck and Dooce were on the porch but Highway wasn’t. That meant one thing, Emmy was where he was. Sure enough she was down in the grass laying and he was jumping, like the fool that he is, around her. The look on her face was kill me now. Or better yet, KILL THIS IDIOT. I don’t want her down there because she can get out through the gate and she would take off and in no time at all be Vulture food. Plus, she doesn’t have fleas or ticks or bugs and she sleeps with me, I would kind of like to keep her pest free. Now she is not allowed out and she is pissed. I could put a collar on her and leash her out but the last time I did that (in the early 70’s) friends came to our second floor apartment and asked why my cat was hanging from her neck off the porch. Well, I guess it’s because she jumped. No leash for Emmy.

On Thursday I went to another lunch at Cal’s, the restaurant that is right down the road from us. I thought it was going to be a small affair, half a dozen women, but it wasn’t. There were at least 15 women there, too many to have a conversation with. I had eaten a few pumpkin cupcakes in the morning and by the time I got there, I wasn’t hungry in the least. I wasn’t going to eat anything but decided on a salad so I didn’t sit there with nothing to eat while everyone else was eating. I did get to chat with a few people I don’t get to see often, so that made me happy!

On Friday I banished the dogs from ever setting foot in the house again (this lasted about 36 hours) and I cleaned the huge amounts of dog hair from the shelves, floor, upholstered couch that it sticks to like glue, OMG, it was everywhere. Add to that the filthy screens and windows and this place was a pig sty. I busted my butt cleaning and once again, hurt my back. I hurt it enough that at 4 PM I went to bed with my laptop and stayed there the remainder of the night. I didn’t even get up to eat anything. (Lie, I ate another cupcake) AND, I missed the damn safety meeting about proper safety head wear. I can just imagine my punishment for this infraction. This is the email I received due to my non-appearance.

Following are the minutes from yesterday’s safety meeting.

1. Attendance SUCKED!
2. There were no presentations on Safety helmets.  Members are at great risk with no protective head gear.
3.  Meeting was adjourned due to dark clouds.
4.  Several members drank to much and had to go to Cal’s for dinner.
Next meeting agenda item will include but not be limited to Safety Footwear. Locally made here on Roatan, the discussion will center on whether to endorse this product line with the SCM Stamp of Approval.
Inline image 1
These minutes are hereby approved for distribution.
This is the kind of shit you have to put up with to live in a PWT hood.
I bought this skirt when I was in the states. I really liked it but it was too long. I bought it anyhow. I decided to remove the bottom ruffle and then hem it, Viola’, a short skirt. I know, don’t tell me, I’m not 14. I’m too old for short skirts, blah blah blah. I don’t care. I will not lie, I like short skirts and I will wear them until I die. WOW, a rhyme..
Skirt with no ruffle
I then hemmed the ruffle’s raw edge and made an infinity scarf.
I saw this truck when I was with Jurgen in Coxen Hole. It’s a fruit truck and to advertise their wares they have random bags of fruit tied ALL AROUND THE TRUCK. Only on Roatan.
Maybe a Cicada?? Again?

Yesterday Jeanie and Roger came over for brunch. We decided to eat dinner early because they have a long drive back to their house in Camp Bay. Bill once again made his semi famous pizza on the grill and I made a salad. While at the ladies lunch the other day Jeanie, Annie and I were talking about sewing and I said I had one needle left for my machine and that Susan was going to bring me some when she comes down. Jeanie shows up with needles, chocolate and this cute metal sandals wall hanging.

I have the perfect place for the sandals, the needles will be on my sewing machine and well, the chocolate will be in my mouth.

Jeanie knew I hadn’t been drinking but she informed me I would have a glass of wine with her, and I did. In fact, I had 2 glasses, 1/4 full each so not really even a full glass. We had a super time hanging out with them. I sure am happy we met Jeanie in 2012 while we were planking at Camp Bay. It was destiny.

One last “you can’t make this shit up picture” and I’m going to go fold laundry. I know, the excitement of it all. Going home the other day we followed this truck. It had a huge box that was tied with a rope in the lower 1/20th of the box. Like it would stop it from toppling out of the back of the truck.

Nothing over the top, nothing higher up on the box, just this little old rope and the Incredible Hulk laying his strong hand on the box to steady it. Only on Roatan.

I’ll leave you with this cuteness. Emmy was laying alongside of me on the bed, kneading. She did it for about 10 minutes, but in this clip, if you turn your sound up, you can hear her purring really loud! She still loves me.


Life in the ‘HOOD.



11/6/2014  After a rainy rainy week we finally are getting some sunshine. Normally I could tell you how much rain we got but our weather station reset itself the beginning of November. Who knew? Speaking of November. How the hell did that happen? It was just July wasn’t it? Of course, here on the rock, seasons are insignificant. December, May, August, February, all interchangeable. Well, in certain respects. We do have a rainy season, enter November; however that is not to say we don’t have rainy spells during the year. This is NOT a desert island, it’s a veritable jungle. It’s green for as far as the eye can see and from our house, that’s pretty far. GREEN GREEN and BLUE. I’ll take it. This is my breakfast view.


Our residency cards must be renewed yearly and to do this you have to go to Tegucigalpa. It is a ridiculous pain in the ass so I contacted Cristiana (our lawyer) to see if she could do it for us. She planned to go there on Wed. so on Monday Bill and I drove down to her house and dropped off our cards and the fee. This has to be done yearly for 5 years and after that once every 5 years. It’s so much easier and cheaper to have her do it that it’s insane to even bother to attempt to do it ourselves. We got our new cards yesterday, good for another year.

This house needed cleaned, not downstairs since Bill is using that once again as a workshop (constant UGH) but upstairs was dirty and dusty. With the rains the dogs were inside and 3 good sized shedding dogs make a huge hair mess. Add to that the sawdust that blows upstairs and comes firmly attached to Bill’s clothes and socks and shoes and you have a pig sty. I dusted, swept and mopped. All clean but it doesn’t last long. It is incredibly dusty down here, the screens and window tracks are covered with dust at all times. Oh well, I really try not to let it bother me and I am 50% successful 50% of the time.

On Tuesday Jeanie stopped by. I haven’t seen her since our trip to La Sirena. She and her husband were back at their home in Atlanta for a few months and just returned. Always enjoy her company. Later on that evening Cleo came over to visit us, so nice having them as neighbors, I just wish they were permanently our neighbors and not moving out to the other end of the world. It will be OK though because I like boat rides and we’ll find out soon enough if all 3 dogs do too. Craig is getting a special boat that is dog friendly so we can come out and stay for extended periods of time at the ranch. Thanks Craig, what a guy you are when not wearing garbage bags.

I met a new friend on Facebook and she finally moved to the island. Welcome to the island Jen, so nice to finally meet you! As luck would have it, a malnourished little kitten found her in Coxen Hole. Animals know who to go to, like Highway getting hit by the truck in front of me..She was taking the cat to Dr. Calderone on Wednesday so I said I would meet her at the vet office. The little kitty was adorable but she couldn’t keep it, she can’t have pets where she is temporarily living. She was lucky enough to find a good home for it. I took her to Carniagro and then to the mall to go to Tigo. Tigo was closed just like the banks were, for the rest of the week. Nice way they decide to change holidays and group them all together, on a whim. Nice vacation for the Hondurans. We went in to Roatan Motorsports, what a great store. The first time I was in they didn’t have much stuff, now they do! Lots of fishing and snorkeling gear and rafts!! Many different types of rafts, nice rafts too!! Anybody looking for a raft, check there.

On Wednesday afternoon Don and Janice came by for some wine and a visit. Always a pleasure visiting with these two.

afternoon snacks, cheese, grapes, almonds and starfruit

Thursday Bill and I did some running around, had to get groceries and wine because Stef and Jurgen were coming over for dinner. We have seen Jurgen recently but not Stefi since she had been sick, so it was fabulous to see her once again. After dinner Craig and Cleo came up and joined us for drinks. The pleasures of ‘Hood living.

It was a stormy night off and on so we hung out inside.
We even ate inside, that was a first.
Yes, I use a plastic wine glass. Crappy hand grip, nice glasses and concrete do not mix well.


Bill was making pizza, his new specialty. He makes the dough from scratch and cooks it on the grill.

Friday we were planning to go to BJ’s with Craig and Cleo but the weather was so nasty we decided against it. For our dose of Halloween we were going to watch Beetlejuice and Craig and Cleo were going to join us, except only Cleo came. We sat down to watch the movie and were half way through it when we heard Craig at the door. Bill went down to let him in and when Craig walked up the steps I lost it. We have a standing joke that our neighborhood is PWT, Poor White Trash. We have gone back and forth with ordinances, safety meetings, steering committee, rules and regulations for living in a PWT hood. Well, I’ll spare you the photos since I haven’t asked for or gotten permission to post them and I’m not even sure they are acceptable to be posted online; BUT, picture this. A man in his undies and white trash bags with trash stuffed in the bags. BEST HALLOWEEN COSTUME EVER. I’m still snorting over it.

Saturday was a soul drenching day. It POURED and then some all freaking day. You couldn’t see the horizon, let alone the water on the south side!

South side of island looking towards the mainland of Central America. You can’t even see Neverstain Bight.
So misty, foggy, whatever you want to call it, it felt good. The air was cool and crisp and the sound of the rain was soothing. I loved it. This is the eastern view of the north shore.
Raining men, women, children AND cats and dogs.. Our 3 were inside sleeping soundly all day. Since it was such a cool day I baked. FOR THE DOGS. I made doggie cookies. I always double the recipe but this time I doubled the doubled recipe and made a crap load of dog treats. I also made some pill pockets things for Dooce’s daily pills, sure beats dirtying a knife everyday to get peanut butter to cover her pill. I’m lazy, I know.
These are human grade but rather bland and cardboard tasting. The dogs LOVE them though & that’s all that matters!
Using my fancy peanut butter jar lid cookie cutter.

Sunday was a gorgeous day. It was sunny and only semi cloudy. We hung around here, I sat on the patio with the boys and read and actually got some sun. My tan is fading..

I got my bag out again on Sunday. It is my favorite thing ever and I have used it constantly since my BFF Andee sent it to me.

It is made by a company called thirty one. They have lots of cute stuff. I have my Contigo water bottle, my tablet, my phone and my camera along with my sun hat all tucked neatly into the bags and it’s myriad pockets. I love this bag.

Along with the stormy weather came some pretty strong wind. It was so strong it blew the toilet paper off the stand, out of the bathroom and off of the roll on to the floor. Notice the caps for the bolts on the toilet have not been put on yet. I guess the bolts are too long and need cut so the caps will fit. I had to order the caps on Amazon, toilets here don’t always come with them.
We had a hatch of these damn bugs the other night. They were everywhere. In the morning there were wings inside and out. Bill took the shop vac to all the window tracks in the house. I have yet to go through and clean them. I don’t think this is a wise time of year to waste my energy doing that. I mean, I don’t want to be hasty.


Beautiful sky
ever changing color
Emmy has been sitting on the table looking out the window the past few mornings so I slid the screen back to see what she would do. She jumped out the window onto the patio table
And stared at me.
She likes to go out and lay under the steps but she doesn’t like when Highway nips her in the butt. You can see Neverstain Bight in this photo, it’s the tiny body of water to the right of Emmy’s ears.

Bill has been busy making these wooden lounge chairs. He made them many years ago when we lived in Pa and thought they would be nice to have down here, hoping also that he can sell a few of them. He was given a chair pad from a friend, makes a nice comfy place to lay in the sun.


He also hung the last light in the kitchen. I recently brought it home with me. Thanks so much Teri B for getting it for me.

I was out on the deck with Lucky the other day and he was laying under the corner table. I watched this lizard run under my chair, under the bench and jump on Lucky’s paw, his leg, his shoulder and then onto the wood post behind Luck. It all happened so fast I couldn’t get a pic and Luck couldn’t even react.

This guy is not afraid of dogs or he didn’t even realize Luck was alive.
Luck is either under my chair or in the corner in the shade. OR, out in the bright sunshine working on his tan.
They all love yogurt. Lucky licked this container clean. I think he looks so funny with it on his lips and nose.
This is where Highway spends his days. He rests his head in the same opening and watches the driveway and the yard, waiting for something to bark at. Car, bird, lizard, leaf…
This damn dog…..

Tuesday I went to my first ladies lunch. I’ve been invited for a long time but really didn’t have the desire to go.  Jeanie messaged me a day after she was here and asked me to go with her. I didn’t know if it was just a small group or the big ladies lunch and I must have been off kilter at the moment, because I said yes. I was going. Crap. I am not much for lunch or for large groups of people, I much prefer small groups. It was being held at Blue Bahia, where Olivia and I stayed in 2010 and also where we ate Thanksgiving last year with some friends. Tuesday was a nasty day, raining buckets and blowing. Jeanie was coming from the far east end of the island, picking up Nancy and coming here. Then we were leaving from here with Cleo driving. It stopped raining once we headed west, not such a bad day except for the huge pools of water laying all over the roads. We stopped at Lawson Rock and picked up Judy and set off for Blue Bahia. They had a good turn out, lots of people I’ve not met and many that I know. It was a nice time, I got to talk to Connie from Cattleya School and plan to go there with Jurgen. It is a school for mentally and physically handicapped island children. Such a cool thing they do, I want to see if it’s somewhere I would like to volunteer.

Bill got an email that was sent to 2 different email addresses of mine and 3 of his. It was from the realtor we bought this property from in 2007. The last we saw him was 2008 when we were on vaca here. Jim’s Mother passed away while we were here and he ended up going back to Wisconsin to sell her house and never returned. He emailed us because he is on the island until Sat and is hoping to see us. He came back down to sell some property he owned. We’re kind of sticking around here hoping to hear that he is able to make it down to this end of the island. The last time he saw our land it was a grown up, jungly piece of property with a cistern and that’s it. Things have changed.

Since I had walking pneumonia a month ago I’ve had trouble with my ear. The same ear that I perforated the eardrum when I couldn’t equalize on a dive in Akumal. I saw my friend Andrea when I met Jen @ the vet’s and she told me not to go in the ocean until my ear is healed. She said when I think it’s healed she wants to check it (she is a nurse) because if the hole in the eardrum hasn’t closed I can will get an infection. I planned to go snorkeling with Jen and get more water in my ear with the hopes the remaining water would leave with the new water, Andrea said not a good plan. It’s been a month now and it’s still not better, it feels like that ear is underwater every time I swallow. It’s a marvelous sensation. I am ordering special earplugs on Amazon, sending them to my friend Susan who I will be picking up at the airport when she arrives in December. Maybe then I can get my diving refresher course with Kristi and can start diving again! Keeping fingers crossed.. Speaking of diving if you have never seen a frog fish here is a fantastic video of one curiously going after a diver. I DID NOT film this, found it online. Talk about a creature of the deep. I will be looking for these guys once I get back underwater.

I’m headed back outside in the sun for a little while longer. It’s so freaking intense it felt like my boobs were getting crispy through my black dress. Hmm, maybe that’s what the burning smell was..


Un año entero

10/26/2014 Today marks the one year anniversary of our move to Roatan. I find it hard to believe one year has passed. The night of Oct. 25th we were a family shoved into a van on our way to Seattle for the biggest move of our life.

Dooce, Highway and Emmy (not pictured) crammed in with the luggage.

We went from this:

This is the stage the house was when we arrived 10/26/13. We THOUGHT we would be moving downstairs in a few weeks. HAHAHA!



This is what the house looked like on 12/27/2013. Still not ready to move in to the lower level.

This is where we are one year later. Not bad for 1 year..

Yes, there is still construction going on. There probably always will be. Furniture to make, a shop to build, never ending.
Main room ceiling
Into bedroom on the left. The door there has been recently hung.
Still need some upper shelves in the kitchen.
Island ends are closed in.

We’re getting there. The guest condo is complete, although it needs repainted and some more furniture made for in it. Bill, could you get on that please? And we have a house to live in, which was the main objective.

Sooo, living in a third world country where the government employees are the “bad” guys is interesting. Political corruption at it’s finest. Education, police protection, functioning judiciary, poverty reduction, clean water, sanitary living conditions, health care, waste disposal, none of it matters. Non functioning idiots.

We are living on an island where:

We can get in more trouble drinking water while driving than you can for passing on a steep hilly curve going 20 miles over the acceptable speed of 30, in the pouring rain with no lights on. Makes no sense. There are NO driving laws here. There are no road rules here. There are no painted lines on the road, there are no smooth birms and there are only a few street lights. There is not a traffic light and there are only a few stop signs that most everyone ignores. There is no drivers test here. If you can pay for the license, pass the physical and answer 5 IQ questions, you’ve got your license. You actually DO NOT NEED TO KNOW HOW TO OPERATE A MOTOR VEHICLE to get your drivers license.

We can buy most medicines over the counter, no prescription necessary and the cost is about the same price of the co-pay in the US

We can buy most DVD’s very soon after the movie opens. In a nice organized store. For $3.00 each, great copies.

We can buy bags of pineapple juice in a bag for less than $2.50. Good juice.

We have faster internet here than we did in Everson. For real.

We can buy Havaiana sandals on the island for cheap.

We can be in the clear blue ocean in less than 10 minutes.

Some of the best food on the island is 3 minutes from our house.

Some of the things we had in the US that I miss {this list was vastly amended after my recent USA jaunt.}

The kids and families and friends, for sure.

Stupid things: My car, our driveway, Bandit wine, clean house windows (impossible to keep the windows clean here) and cheap kitty litter. I miss the chicken caesar salad @ the Black Forest. I miss walking the runway with the dogs, it was level and easy on the knee.

Some things I don’t miss:

Carpeting. OMG, concrete rocks..

Wearing clothes, like more than 1 or 2 pieces (dress or skirt/tank)

Having to wear PROPER shoes. UGH, just the word scares me

Carrying a portable heater around with me at home for 9 mos. a year

Outrageous heating costs

Neon lights and billboard signs

taxes, taxes, taxes

4, 6, 8 lane highways


icy roads

snow and gross dirty snow

rain for days and weeks

summer starting after July 4th

Costco, Macy’s, Nordstrom’s, Target, Walmart, TJ MAXX, just don’t miss them. I was so freaking excited but when I got in the store and started looking at all the stuff it reminded me that I’m not into stuff anymore. The things I bought in the states were actually things we NEEDED. (except for the Trail Mix from Costco and the bags of Archer Farms snacks from Target) Changes..

Living here is not for everyone. It is sometimes very challenging but there is also the beauty that surrounds us daily. Like the other day Cleo and I made a rum/beer run to the market in Oak Ridge. We both commented what a gorgeous view it was, we could see the north and south shore reefs just driving down the road. We see it everyday; I don’t want to ever take it for granted. It’s a slower pace here. It’s good.

Selling cookies with her apron still on, in the middle of the road, on the speed bump.
Mediocre DVD’s, not to be confused with the excellent ones at Action Rentals.
I’ve not shopped here.
This was recently painted.
Passed out
Roatan shopping
Always someone around to make an extra lane, pass anyway you can, right, left, middle..
Traffic is already at a standstill because someone PARKED in one of the 2 lanes. Then this guy comes rolling his cart down the other lane.
Scary party stuff
Plastic city
I still have a laundry fascination.
There was a free dental clinic in Oak Ridge. Obviously some of the police decided to get their teeth fixed. This photo was taken of one of them, still holding onto his M-16.

Yesterday was a rainy day, a much welcomed rainy day. I love it when we have a day like that. They will be coming more often as we get into the rainy season on the island. My buddy Liz posted a pic of First Bight when it was storming. I took a few pics and posted them, mine looked nothing like hers. This is Liz’s photo:

South shore, First Bight


These are mine:

John’s house, North shore
East, N shore



It did clear up right before dark:

John’s, N. shore, can see the reef break (white in the water) again
South shore
4 Hummingbirds sitting on the clothesline during the storm.

We have been having trouble with the boys at night, they will not stop barking. Thursday night Bill went out to see what they were going insane over and there was an OWL perched a top one of the chain link fence posts just staring at the dogs, who were in serious frenzy mode. This morning they started again and it was an OWL in the tree. What is up with that? First it was the vultures, now OWLS. At least the OWLS are pretty.

Bill has been walking the dogs because my knee hates the downhill part of the walk and the other day he saw a Boa Constrictor. I am so pissed I missed it, I still need to see that, a crocodile and an armadillo. That should take care of the land based animals on the island. It must be baby lizard season, we have so many little lizards running around here it’s crazy. Bill opened up the panel box the other day to see what was going on with the power and a big lizard jumped out of it. Nice. Glad it didn’t happen to me, I would have peed.

All in all, it’s been a great year. We have met some wonderful people, seen some gorgeous places and are happy in our new home. We have 3 great dogs and one fabulous bitchy cat. We won’t talk about the being together 24/7/365. I’m a little anal, he’s a lot not. It works.

What more could we ask for? Bring on año número dos, we’re ready!












It’s an omen


Where do I begin? It feels like this is my first blog, it’s been so long. Thank you to the people who have messaged me wondering why there were no blogs! It’s David Boyd’s fault, AKA Squeeze. Nice to be able to blame this on you.

I just returned from a whirlwind trip to the US. Luckily I got bumped to first class out of Roa and sat next to my friend Linda’s husband, Jay. The longer leg of the trip wasn’t first class but it was in the roomier seats so it wasn’t bad. There were so many thunderstorms in the mid west that the pilot circumvented causing us to get to Seattle 1 hour and 15 minutes late! My instructions were to call the cab company as soon as I arrived so they could dispatch a cab. Of course, my phone isn’t working because I needed to get a sim card for a Us carrier so I had to use a PAY PHONE. G A S P! I haven’t used one of those in 20 years. I called and got a recording. GREAT, I figured I was spending the night at Seatac. I turned around to walk to the luggage carousel and some guy said, “Are you Debbie?” UMM, who’s asking? He was from the cab company, HALLELUJAH, he waited the whole time for me. DUH…I tipped him well.

As most of you know I have hand issues, it’s a repetitive use issue stemming from counting other peoples money all my life. I have had surgery on both of my hands and in 2011 I had the CMC (Carpal Metacarpal, ie thumb joint) replaced. In 2012 I had the CMC surgery on my right hand. This whole thing ended up being an L&I claim, work related injury. Despite the fact that they were not paying me any money, my claim was never closed. They decided they wanted to examine me again so they could close the claim and they paid for me to fly to Seattle and take a taxi to Everett and they comped my room for 5 nights and my meals. It happened very fast so I kind of threw things together and was out of here.

The last time I was in the states was April, so it’s been awhile. I was excited as hell to go shopping. I am a shopper girl, I love(d) to shop. My friend Janene drove down Monday from Bellingham and picked me up. We got a sim card for my phone and then set off shopping. With a vast array of items in front of my eyes, I became withdrawn, I didn’t want to shop for all the things I WANTED. I realized I didn’t NEED most of it. Janene took me to Costco. I needed a new bed pillow and Bill needed socks. I got both and a big 4# bag of the Kirkland trail mix. That’s it. I really didn’t want to look around in there. And let me say this, Costco shopping is fun and relaxing if you are not at the Bellingham store. The store in Everett wasn’t crowded, you could actually move and the check out lines were short. We also went to the Alderwood Mall. I don’t think I’ve ever been there and I was overwhelmed. I did buy 4 bottles of OPI polish in Macy’s but that was it. Jury is still out on whether I like the pillow, until my neck stops hurting and popping every time I turn my head, no pillow will be comfy!

Tuesday I had an appointment with a doctor (found out at the last minute she was a shrink, hahaha, jokes on them! Put me in a room with a shrink, they should have known better.) It lasted all of 30 minutes. From there I went to Wal Mart, WOO freaking HOO. I was a WALMARTIAN! I bought a lot of stuff there, like a new hand mixer, 4 tubes of Sensodyne toothpaste, new heads for our sonic toothbrushes (cheaper than they were at Costco), dog treats and some of Bill’s favorite underwear and Tshirts, Fruit of the Loom. I also bought a lot of stupid shit. Heavy shit. Like 2 humongo jars of peanut butter, 1 Skippy, 1 Peter Pan. This will be an interesting test. All of my life I used Peter Pan peanut butter, nothing else, had to be creamy, no crunchy ever. When we moved to WA in 1995 I was near suicidal because there was NO PETER PAN. What were they thinking??? I swore off PNB, but that didn’t last, especially since it is my number 1 food staple. Then I met Janann and Sara Blonde @ BoAmerica, both of their men were in the military and had access to the base stores. AND GUESS WHAT?? They had Peter Pan PNB!! I had a connection! But I’ve been a Skippy girl for years now, only because it was ridiculous to be so obsessed over PNB.

See, I was talking about buying heavy items and digressed severely over freaking PNB. And they put me in a room with a shrink. HAHAHAHAHAHA!! So damn funny.

Back to the shopping. I also bought 2 big bags of Uncle Ben’s brown rice. Yes, you can get it here but I noticed it on the shelf and saw the price, $2.00 less a bag and me myself and I go through a bag in less than 2 weeks. Bag of rice weighs 2#, I bought 2. Jar of PNB weighs 2#8oz, I bought 2. See how fast the weight adds up? Trail mix = 4#’s!!

So anyway, did the Wal Mart gig. Trace came down on Tuesday night and we went out to eat, so nice to see him, it’s been almost a year! He headed back up towards home (foothills of Mt. Baker) around 7:30 that night. Before he took me back to the hotel he found a drugstore so I could get some Bandit Pinot Grigio.

It’s silly to be so excited over this, but I was! I spotted it half way down the first aisle. The green seemed to be calling my name. I used restraint and only bought four, 1 liter each 🙂
I miss my Outlander. Damn, I loved that car! Trace enjoys having it also, he can haul all his climbing gear in it and also sleep in it at the trail heads, waiting for dawn.

I had another appointment on Wednesday with an orthopedic doctor. He talked too much and thought he was really funny. I thought he was stupid. I liked the shrink better. Anyhow, this guy went over my file verbally with me, then he did it again into a microphone. This took about 13 minutes. Then he asked me to sit on the table while he called in a nurse. It was actually the receptionist girl, whatever. He then had my put my arms over my head, then down to a 45 at my side, then straight out in front, then turn your hand over, then make a fist, hands on your hips, behind your back, palms up. I almost broke into YMCA by the Village People. The whole exercise took about 2 minutes. Assholes.

After that it was back to the hotel (dive) to wait for Teri B. She drove down, picked me up and we ran around to a few stores. We went to World Market and all I bought was jerk seasoning and some fajita stuff. We ate dinner at a little restaurant behind the dive I was staying in, called Terracotta Red. It was good but the drinks were expensive and weak. Teri got a room at the hotel, she worked in Everett that day and had a meeting in Seattle the next morning. So nice hanging out with her, laughed our butts off!

Hobbit beer
Wine, wine, glorious wine!!

I also sent some Amazon stuff to Teri B which she brought down. This was heavy to lug back to the island but it’s a really nice float. I tried it yesterday, it’s very comfy and it does have a drink holder but it’s ROUND. Bandit boxes are square. Oh well, I only have 2 left, drank 1 at the hotel, brought 3 back, drank 1 already. I’ll be sad when my Bandit is gone.

Thursday I wandered around a bit, I was actually ready to go home at this point. I brought a pair of Diesel flats with me in case it was cold weather. I wore 1 of the shoes for about 2 minutes in my room and decided against regular shoes. My toes were bitching up a storm in those 2 minutes!! I wore flip flops the entire trip. I was in Macy’s looking around for something to do and noticed the women in leather jackets with scarfs, jeans tucked in to their knee high boots and an expensive heavy leather bag over their shoulder. Me, a pair of leggings, a long top and flip flops. I did consciously not look as I walked through the BOOT and SHOE department. It was difficult, I admit that.

This is the way over sized box that Amazon sent my raft in. I gave them some feedback on their packaging for sure. Ridiculous!!
Welcome to the PNW, where it drizzles enough daily to be a pain in the ass. Just rain and be done with it, and what’s with this cold weather when it rains?

Thursday my friend Bahana drove down to Everett when she got off of work. Nathan and Bryan were coming up from Magnolia to meet me for dinner that evening. Luckily they got up to Everett early enough so B could go eat too. We went to Lombardi’s on Marine View Drive for dinner. I FINALLY got to meet Nathan’s other half, Bryan! I also met Brinkley, their Golden who was content to wait in the car instead of at home. She’s a little spoiled.  It was so nice spending time with Bahana and Nathan and Bryan!

Nathan and Bryan
Dinner @ Lombardi’s

All in all, the trip was not as alluring as it sounded. Other than seeing my son and my friends, it was a waste of time. I did not enjoy my stay in the US and it made me realize, I do not want to live there and I am so glad I don’t. Give me the island life, loose comfy clothes, no make up, flip flops and never having to worry about what your hair looks like, not that it ever was a concern of mine. I was looking forward to getting back on the plane on Friday night to come home, although that wasn’t until 11:59 PM. I had a whole day to kill and nothing to do. I had to be out of the hotel by 2 and wasn’t getting picked up until 8 by the taxi company for my ride back to Seatac. I watched Nashville and a few other shows on my tablet and wasted time until Trace came down at 4:30 for dinner. We went back over to Terracotta Red b/c it was close by and they had Stella Artois beer. MMMMMM. I like Stella. After dinner Trace and I sat in his car and talked until around 7 PM. Then he was going to Seattle to stay at a friends and meet his climbing buddy in the morning to go over the mountains to Vantage to hike and I was waiting (again) for my ride.

I got to the airport quite early, breezed through security with the Global access and was at my gate to WAIT. I did get bumped to first class again but their white wine was awful. Bummer. I had a long layover in Houston, that seemed longer than the 4 hours it actually was. I had tried and tried to get a window seat from Houston into Roa but couldn’t. The flight was packed, not an empty seat. I got stuck in an aisle seat and while it beats middle, it still sucks. Security and immigration at Roa was fast, no fingerprinting, no photo taken. It did however take eons for my luggage to come out. Obviously priority means NADA on the island. I think the fact that United put the Priority tags on my bags made them get taken off first in Roa and loaded onto the first luggage cart which means it was the last cart brought to the carousel. My theory anyhow.

I got home and started tearing in to my suitcases. I found dog toys and treats and the catnip banana I got for Emmy. I also got one for Craig and Cleo’s cat, Tailor so I decided we needed to take it down to her. We walked down there, stayed fifteen minutes, came home and I went to bed. I slept for 4 hours, got up, ate salad and went back to bed.

Bill got a lot done while I was gone.

The bedroom door. He did a neat design in the wood around the door too. He also hung the one downstairs that goes from the entryway into the living area. I’m too lazy to walk downstairs and take a pic though.
He also closed in both sides of the island.
Highway checking out his property.
Beautiful but windy night

Before I left I watched the movie, Fault in our Stars and read Gone Girl and Dark Places both by Gillian Flynn. Excellent books, can’t wait to get the Gone Girl movie!

I was bored one day a while ago, it was rainy and windy and I stayed indoors and goofed around online. I did a few of the quizzes, like:

How smart are you? Brilliant

What color is your aura?  Green

Should you have a dog or a cat? Cat

How well do you know America history? I don’t

How much medical knowledge do you have? I could be a doctor I know so much.

What mythical creature should you be? I got MERMAID!! Of course I did.


You are a mermaid! You’re a very fun loving and outgoing person. You have the most fun with your friends and you feel whole when you are near the ocean. You also value the environment and you are a big time animal lover.

So there you have it. Mermaid it is..


Lobsters, Lizards and a Barracuda named Frank.


It’s been a jam packed two weeks of fun in and around Roatan. Paul and Sharon arrived on the 13th during the Great Airport Debacle at the Roatan airport. What a freaking mess. The Delta flight from Atlanta arrived late and then United and 2 American flights came in back to back on the day they decided to start fingerprinting and photographing EACH person. With an untrained skeleton crew and new equipment, it didn’t go very well. Nothing like having 600+ people standing out in the 95 degree sun W A I T I N G. It normally takes 45 minutes tops to go through customs, get your bag and be on your way. Not this day. It took hours. Luckily they got the issues sorted out and things are once again running smoothly, well, as smoothly as possible in this third world country.

Sharon brought a big bag of stuff I ordered from Amazon, it was like freaking Christmas!! Stuff stuff and more stuff.

Measuring cups and spoons, almonds, toilet bolt covers, Mod Podge, dog toys, cat toys, Havaianas, dive boots…
OPI polish, suit bag, tablet and phone case, turquoise jute band to make curtain tie backs, pepper mill and pepper, drying mat, shoelaces, whisk. Christmas in September, it was the best!!!

After we got home from the airport we fed Sharon and Paul and then headed down to John’s pool. Seems that was our standby every day, so lucky it’s available to us anytime! On Sunday we went to Oak Ridge and walked across the bridge and out to the spit of land across from BJ’s.

Bill went to buy cigars and this building was across the street, love the colors.
Old wooden boat being repaired in Oak Ridge
Cool fence
I feel like this is me some times!
Sharon enjoying the sea breeze
I love colorful houses


Paul and Sharon
Guard dog
same fence, different perspective
great old toy
bottle tree
Love lies bleeding plant @ BJ’s


We went to La Palapa for lunch {we were swarmed by bees while eating, it was ridiculous} and the ITIB school performed while we were there in celebration of Independence Day.
These kids were fantastic
Looking out over the lagoon
No, it’s not, it’s September

Here is a short video of the school’s performance, we absolutely loved it!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuUb1ER-GLw

On Monday we went to Havana Beach Club, a short 5 minute drive from here. It was a nice breezy day so the bugs weren’t too bad. It really is a beautiful spot, too bad they can’t get a decent restaurant in there that would draw a local ex-pat crowd. The restaurant business is one of the most unpredictable and difficult businesses to own or to venture into. So many start and fail here due to such a distinct difference between the busy and slow season. It sure is a gorgeous beach.

Sharon and Paul


An aerial view of Havana Beach Club posted on the Roatan Cooking Facebook page. We won’t talk about the fall I took at the tip of the island in the bottom of the picture and how huge of a bruise I still have 2 weeks later.


We laid around a bit the next day, at least that’s all I can remember doing. It’s so nice having a pool close by to swim in when we want to and it’s been super crystal clear, which is a bonus! On Wednesday we decided to go to Little French Key for the day. It was a great day to be there, no cruise ships = no crowds.


monkey love with Lisa


Melissa wants to know, “are you my Momma?”
Sharon and the Kinkajou.
Lawrence has gained over 150#, in fact they had to put him on a diet.
Nice teeth
such a gorgeous cat
Lawrence has a huge cage on the edge of the property, overlooking the sea. One side of it faces a pen with a goat in it. Lawrence looks at that goat daily, wanting like hell to tear it apart. I wonder if the goat is aware of the killer across the path?
They were making these fantastic benches on the top deck of the building. If you look close you can see the side of one. It’s body shape curved plywood with wooden slats across, has a raised part for your knees. I want one or two of these on wheels for the roof.
Little French Key
We finished the night off with dinner and a bottle of wine @ Cal’s.



Thursday was another day of fun and adventure on the water.  Did you already recognize the theme I have going on? Everything I do or want to do involves the water, so if you’re coming, you better be a fan of the ocean.  We were to meet Jordan @ 9:30 at Oak Ridge. He was going to take us out snorkeling and fishing on his dad Woudsin’s boat. He was a little late, and while we were waiting I realized I didn’t have my phone with his number so I could call him. Bill ran home to get it. By the time he got back Jordan had come and gone to get gas and returned.  We loaded our stuff into the boat and were off. Through Oak Ridge and Pandytown, through the cut in the mangroves to Calabash Bight. We got to see our friends future home from the water for the first time, what a great location they have, it’s so beautiful out there. We went past Lime Caye and Fort Caye. Fort Caye is talked about in the book Roatan Odyssey, (it actually used to be a Military base.) Past New Port Royal to Old Port Royal and before I knew it we were at Helene. Jordan dropped anchor in about 10′ of water offshore from Rocky Point. Probably not a good place for people to learn to snorkel. We had to jump off the boat into the water and guess what? After snorkeling for 30 minutes I had to drag my ass over the SIDE of the boat to get back on it. We ALL had to. No ladder, just a couple of strong young guys. We made it and next time we’ll go to a better place to start snorkeling.

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On our way, Jordan’s cousin steering.
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Our friend’s home and dock
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Pastel church

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Mango Creek Lodge
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stunning colors

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Fort Caye
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Jordan, my friend from Helene is sitting next to Bill. His parents are friends of mine too. What a super young man, his folks have done a great job raising him.
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Through the mangroves
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View of my friends home. I met Jordan and his family through these friends of mine from Pennsylvania, who own this home on Helene, a part of Roatan.
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Sharon snorkeling for the first time!
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Jordan {who can hold his breath forever} and Sharon
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Wondering how in the hell we were getting back on that boat???
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Docked at my friends home. I spent a night there back in Feb., it’s fabulous.
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Lunch on Perry and Kay’s dock
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Such a gorgeous place!
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Paul caught a barracuda. That thing had some mighty nasty teeth on it, YIKES!!

Before I forget, I took none of the pictures this day, Paul took all of them. This is because I forgot to put THE MEMORY CARD BACK IN MY CAMERA. I was pissed. To think Bill went home to get my phone, me not knowing my card was missing until we got on the boat. It was a great day on the water, well, as far as I’m concerned, any day on the water is a great day.

On Friday we had plans to go with Craig and Cleo to their new home in Calabash. It was a nice ride out there and fun looking around the place again. After that we were all going to go to BJ’s but we decided to go to Jimmy’s, AKA, La Sirena, instead. Those rum punches were calling my name. Bill asked one of the guys if they knew Miguel (our friend and worker) and he said he did, he was his cousin. We knew Miguel was Selena’s cousin, obviously a big family. While we were sitting there a truck pulled up and Selena went out and carried in a young sleeping girl. She laid her down on a straw mat and she kept right on sleeping. A guy came in and sat down by us and I asked if he was Jimmy, the owner. He was, so we introduced ourselves and chatted for awhile with him. I was thrilled we got to meet him because Camp Bay/ La Sirena is my favorite place to chill.

I LOVE this place
What’s his name, waving at me.
The owner’s daughter napping



After Camp Bay we headed back home, washed up and went to Cal’s for dinner. A delicious end to a fabulous week!

Carl, the chef @ Cal’s
Our friend Reynaldo, the waiter there. We just found out Reynaldo plays for the Gravel Bay Marlins baseball team. We’re hoping to go to one of his games.

Saturday I took Sharon and Paul down to West Bay beach to snorkel. There were only a few people there, the water was calm, a perfect place to find your sea legs. There were so many fish right at shore I couldn’t believe it. They were little nibblers too.

Stoplight Parrotfish
Sharon was surrounded
Black Spiny Tailed iguana
The guy selling hats hung them on the ironshore



Juvenile Spotted Drum fish
Feather duster
Parrot fish and a striped Sergeant Major

All in all, a great day snorkeling at West Bay beach, I love that place! The next day we went over to Parrot Tree Plantation and hung out by the pool. UGH! The water was so hot it didn’t even feel good. How can water in a pool 320′ long be so warm? Maybe because the pool is long but not deep it heats up quickly, not sure but I hate water that warm.

We went to Lady Lee on Monday to talk to some one about our gas oven. First we couldn’t get the oven to maintain the temperature. It would get up to 325 and then shut off, also, we couldn’t get the pilot light to stay lit. They were going to send a repairman the next morning to fix it. We hung out the next morning and nobody came. At 4 PM I get a phone call from Lady Lee stating, “The boy who is coming this morning can’t, he’ll be there mañana.” Sure he will. Wednesday morning I was taking Paul and Sharon to West End to do some shopping. Once we parked the car and got down to the stores it started sprinkling. Then it started raining. We hung out in Waves of Art for awhile until the rain slightly subsided then we made a break for a few more stores. On our way back to the car it poured and by the time we got back to the parking lot we were soaked. I still had one more stop, Umbul Umbul of course. I picked up a few more pieces of batik to make a bedspread and pillowcases and Sharon got a cute dress and top and lots of other stuff. By the time we got home the repairman was here and he fixed the pilot light and explained why the oven didn’t stay lit. D U H. You have to set the timer for the required bake time BEFORE you turn it on because once it reaches the temperature if the timer isn’t set for how long to maintain the temp, it shuts off. Obviously the manual is in Spanish, which I read as well as I read Russian and Arabic.

We ran down to Mahogany Bay so Sharon and Paul could finish their shopping. I’ve been there many times before with company but this time they wanted ID, they gave us passes and KEPT my residency card until  I left and returned the passes. I doubt I will go there again because I did not like handing over my card to someone and hoping like hell he still had it when I returned. Weird JuJu.

I have wanted to go back to Lobster City since Ron and Yvonne took Teri B and I snorkeling there. I contacted Sherman Arch and arranged a time for us to go. Cleo went along with the 4 of us. We got to the Iguana Farm and while waiting they gave us branches to feed the iguanas. Luckily I had my dive boots on because they were stepping all over our feet. They are such amazingly gorgeous creatures. They have over 2000 there, they aren’t fenced in, they are free to leave but they don’t. They have it made.




The females are green and as they age they remain green on their belly.
This one decided one tail wasn’t enough so it is growing another.


Frank, the Barracuda. He liked my shiny gold bracelets. I didn’t find this out until AFTER I got in the boat.
Lobster City, these lobsters are protected from poachers 24/7 by the Arch family.
A funnel of Grunts
Sam hand feeding the lobsters




The Arch’s boat



Friday morning we met with a former US Tax attorney, tax guru about our taxes. After that we went to West Bay beach to do some last day snorkeling. Bill decided not to go so he sat on the beach while we snorkeled for over an hour. It was crystal clear and for some reason, even though I couldn’t see out the viewfinder on my camera because it was fogged up, I got some good photos.  As soon as I went under I saw a snorkel laying in the sand about 10′ deep. I swam past it, looked at it and then came back and dove down and got it. I ended up carrying it with me for an hour. A new snorkel, perfect timing, as Bill’s is leaking.

Awesome sign at Banarama made out of Seahorses.
Sharon and Paul rubbing it in to Sharon’s brother Darren. She made it to Banarama before he did!


Clouds offshore
Queen angelfish




Spotted Drum fish
Coral with a Christmas tree worm
Another shot of the Spotted drum
Sea fan
Paul and Sharon snorkeling



Christmas tree worms
A plethora of Christmas tree worms
Feather duster


Another Parrot fish
Boats on West Bay Beach


On Friday a local [and very amazing] photographer was going to do the shark dive and take some photos. What he came across in the process was nothing short of unbelievable. They found a boat with 20 Cuban refugees drifting in the sea. They had been sailing for 11 days in a home made boat. The story is here: http://www.bayislandsvoice.com/para-cuba-no-mas-nunca-refugees-vow-they-will-return-to-cuba-only-feet-first-2014092610104

This is the boat they left Cuba in. The whole thing is handmade.


This incredible photo Shawn Jackson took while the boat and the refugees were being rescued.

Oceanic whitetip shark circles boat of refugees, hand paddling off shore.

That’s it folks, this has taken me two days to get my thoughts and shit in order. Our company is gone, we’re laying around the house, may head down to the pool for a float or maybe head to bed under the fan for a nap. Hopefully we’ll get our TWIN CLOCKS hung today. Sort of like TWIN PEAKS, but not.

It’s a long story but we ended up with 2 Fibonacci spiral clocks from Plow and Hearth. The move was murderous on them so we ordered new parts, have them working again, just need to hang.
Me loving my boyz!!
These two boys are so close, it makes me happy when I see them laying next to each other, Highway’s head resting on Lucky’s butt. I’m so glad we got Lucky, Highway needed a brother and we all love Lucky Boy so much!!

P.S. My two words would be don’t settle.


Eclectic Twist

Design And Live Outside the Lines