08/09/2016 I’m recovered from company and have been in chill mode for many weeks, nothing I have to do except enjoy my life on the island. We spent a few days waiting for Hurricane Earl, who, at the last minute changed paths and headed straight for Belize. They got hit, we just got rain and wind. Very thankful we were spared and sad for the people in BZE.
A few weeks ago Nidia was contacted by Carnival cruise lines that their employees had taken it upon themselves to organize a food drive for the elderly on Roatan. We met Nidia and Mac at Mahogany Bay at noon to pick up the cruise ship employees and take them and their 60 bags of food to the East End of the island. Due to some snafu, it took longer to pick them up than planned but we got them and were on our way to Pandytown. The people were waiting when we got there.
Next stop was Punta Caliente but when we got there a few crew members had to be back on the ship so we left and took them back to Mahogany Bay.
On July 30th Because We Care did a breakfast for the people in Hottest Sparrow, a community many times forgotten. I got there around 6:45AM and didn’t really do much until the ladies cooking the food were finished, then I helped serve, made chocolate milk for the kids, passed out drinks, some soccer balls donated by Trish and Dave Symons and then helped pass out toys and gifts and clean up. It was a fun morning.
We were fortunate enough to meet some new friends from California via Alex. Kevin and Pam bought some land near us and plan on building on it. They had never been to the East End of the island so we took them to La Sirena, our favorite place.
On the way home we stopped at the pirate ship and our friend the guard was there. He gave us another tour and some more wooden stuff, like a Seahorse statue that I am in love with.
We have had so many people over for dinner lately and that is always fun, especially when it’s a nice day and we can be in the pool.
I picked up my twinnie Ann and we went snorkeling at West Bay again and then had some drinks (of course) at Grand Roatan.
This past week I did something I’ve wanted to do for a long long long time. I got my dive refresher and went diving. Thanks to Eric White of Blue Island Divers, he made my dreams come true once again. It’s been over 12 years since I dove and I really wanted and needed a refresher. Diving is dangerous, it’s good to go over these things. Eric was excellent and made me feel very comfortable. I’m looking forward to diving again with him as soon as I return. Thank you Eric! (his wife and I are friends and she cooked at the community breakfast, great people)
Speaking of Mermaids, Robby and Julie brought me this mug. It keeps water cold and ice stays ice for 12 hours. It’s an Ozark Mtn. mug.
All was fabulous with the mug until yesterday when I took my mermaid cup to our friends Dave and Trish’s for a party.
The ice stayed ice, just had to refill the water several times while there. (in between glasses of wine) Even after the cup sat along the pool in the sun, the outside was warm, inside ice cold. I filled it again before I left our friends. We got home, put things away, fed the dogs and I laid down to watch some Netflix. I filled my cup w/ more water when we got home and had the cup sitting on the floor while I was on the couch. Around 9 I got up to go to bed and wanted to put more ice in the cup, I took the lid off and there was a small 1′ long Gecko floating belly up in my cup. I FREAKED OUT! Needless to say, I was over the top out of my mind thinking I might have sucked it up in the straw. OMG. I am going to devise something to keep the hole small enough that nothing can crawl in it ever again. Never ever ever again.
Today we delivered the clothes that Robby and Julie brought for Alexi’s brother, nephew and sisters. It was a success because everything fit. They were very appreciative and said thank you very much. I also gave Efraim and Osman a soccer ball donated by Dave and Trish. Earlier I took Alexi to Mega Paca and bought him 2 long sleeve white shirts for school, 3 pair of long pants, 2 black, 1 navy, some underwear, a few pairs of athletic pants and a couple t-shirts. Then we went to LST and bought him a brand new pair of black shoes for school. This is just the beginning of helping him. Thanks to Liza and Mike, Karl, Christy, Brenda and Sean. Thanks also to Tarra for the Old Navy flip-flops. They fit Alexi and he was thrilled to have a few pairs of new shoes. We’re going to take care of a few months of school for him also ($15.00/mo). I’ll keep you posted. Thank you all so much. The little boys and the girls were so excited with all of their new things and Alexi is looking forward to starting school with new clothes!
That’s it, I’m off to bed. I just wanted to get this stuff out of my mind because I’ll be gone 2 weeks and won’t have time to do any blogging then. Mom and Dad have finally said they would move closer to my sister Missy in Olney, MD. They will be 5 minutes away instead of 90+. So much easier. I plan to help them go through stuff, donate and pack, should be an interesting visit.
I’ll post this mañana, I’m off to fill up my water mug (and check for geckos) and then going to bed.
02/17/2016 Today I went to my local bank to withdraw $$ from the ATM but it was down, AGAIN. So I used the blank check in my wallet to get money out of the account. I made the check out to myself and signed the back of it. It was for Tres Mil, 3000LPS or about $150.00. I handed the teller my Honduran resident card and my debit card for this account. He started filling out paperwork and on the back of my check he wrote my account number. Then he flipped the check over, looked at it, at the back of the check, then at me again and said DEPOSIT? OMG, NO. Why would I deposit a check drawn on my only account into the account it is written on?? This was after waiting 35 minutes..seriously??
I haven’t been in a blogging mood lately, sorry about that. I’m depressed. My house in the US was always clean, windows, floors, curtains, clean. I am physically unable to keep this house on the hill clean no matter what I do. I dust and the next day it looks like I invited the Sahara desert over for a freaking windstorm. I shit you not. You can write your name on any and every piece of my furniture. My window tracks are disgustingly gross, filled with dead critters and mud. I just cleaned them again yesterday and as soon as it rains they will be muddy again. Does it rain dirt on this island? Cleaning my window tracks is an all day job, I have 16 windows on the second floor that open. They are filthy all the time. Add to that a husband who is not Mr. Clean and 5 dogs and a cat and it’s a lose lose situation.
Last week a few nights in a row when I crawled into bed I smelled dead animal. I was convinced there was a dead lizard somewhere under the bed. Bill looked all over for it but didn’t see anything. We pulled the mattress up and looked under it, nada. I opened my nightstand drawer and found a pile of stuff that smelled like dead something. Whatever it was it was disintegrated into a mound of pulp in the drawer. I took the drawer in the bathroom, emptied the contents, scrubbed it out and put it back. Then I went back in the bathroom to clean up the mess and was assaulted by the SAME DAMN SMELL. I finally realized it was the bag of cat treats still setting on the counter that smelled like dead lizard. That’s what the mound of stuff was in the drawer that smelled.
Last Sunday we had no power due to the rain and winds. So, what do we do when the power is off, go to Mega Paca and shop. Marilyn, Carmen and Carmen’s parents picked me up on their way to town. First thing I scored was a Kate Spade wallet. It was $1.50.
We all had a blast shopping except it was hot in there with no A/C (power was out island wide). We made a few stops before they brought me home. I think power came on later in the day but it was off for a loooong time.
Monday was another beach day. I picked up Carmen and Brett and Karon and Ron (Carmen’s parents) and we drove out to Camp Bay beach. We had a pretty good turnout, we floated, played volleyball and had a few drinks.
Then the 5 of us went to La Sirena for rum punches, well I didn’t drink any because I was driving and they are STRONG. I just devoured my onion rings, so yummy!
We had an epic Tuesday, really we did. Marilyn, Carmen and Karon picked me up and we went to Coxen Hole to get Nidia. We were on our way to see Doña Maria. I had sheets and a blanket, shampoo and conditioner and 2 bags of coffee for her. Marilyn had a new pillow, more sheets and a roll of chicken wire that a friend of hers donated. After we got Nidia and the chickens that Daine gave us we went to the grocery store where Carmen and Karon bought Doña Maria all kinds of things, cereal, milk, oil, salt, sugar and coca cola. Then we went looking for feed for the chickens (that were in a pillow case in a box in the back of the car), got that at the 2nd store. We then drove around some more looking for a corn grinder for her. Marilyn had gotten one before but turns out it was a meat grinder. After looking several places, we had one more place to look. That was the golden ticket, Nidia found a beautiful grinder there for Doña Maria.
We headed back to the path that treks through the jungle and started walking up to her house. When we got there we were disappointed because she wasn’t home. Martha Stewart Marilyn, in her pink Polo wellies, started building a chicken coop for the new chickens.
Rather than leave and not get to see Doña Maria we decided to hang around until she came home. We wandered around checking things out, waiting for her when all of a sudden she comes walking up the path with a cardboard box balanced on her head. In the box were scraps of wood for her fire that is always burning. She had walked all the way into Coxen Hole carrying a hand of bananas to sell. Doña Maria weighs all of 75# soaking wet and she carried the bananas down the path, walked along the highway into town, they must have weighed 30# at least. She found a buyer for her bananas, the lady took them and then said she didn’t have the $$ to pay her. All of that for nothing, she came home banana-less. Doña Maria was so excited to see us. We made her close her eyes and then Nidia walked her to the chicken coop, she was thrilled that we got her chickens. Nidia showed her the gorgeous corn grinder that Marilyn bought for her, I know it’s something she will really use a lot. We gave her all the things we bought for her, I think it may have been overwhelming. Carmen had a padlock with a key for her door and a variety of food stuff. Doña Maria showed us her sugar came press that her son made for her.
She wants to get her hair done again so Nidia will follow up on that. After I posted some photos on FB I had a friend here on the island who wants to pay for and build her a table and bench to use as a kitchen table. I’ll probably get her a few plastic chairs too. We are also inquiring about building her a better home. She doesn’t own the land so we have to get permission from the landowner.
After we said our good byes to Doña Maria we dropped Nidia off in Coxen Hole and headed home, sort of. We got diverted and went to Romeo’s in French Harbor for lunch and wine.
I don’t recall what I did the next few days, one of them I tried, again, to pay my friends property tax, only to be told this time I needed copies of their RTN’s. They did not say I needed them the last time I tried to pay, each time I go there, it’s something different. You would think that they would make it easy to pay your taxes, especially since the many on the island don’t pay theirs. UGH!
Friday was BJ’s and on the way there, I paid our taxes. The last 2 times I tried to pay them I couldn’t wait any longer because of Spanish class. This time I was in and out in less than 10 minutes. Then I was off to BJ’s with the crew. It was anther rainy shitty day but we still had a good group of people.
And the rains continued. When I got up Saturday morning and looked out the windows, first the south shore and then the north shore, I realized I couldn’t see either. We were socked in with no visibility and a very low cloud cover. The tower at the airport is not equipped to do IFR landings so unless the pilots can see the runway (Visual landing as opposed to instrument) they can’t land.
I got to the airport at 11:15 and we were told it was closed. No flights coming in or leaving. Really? We had 2 AA, 2 UAL and a Delta flight coming in and an airport full of stranded delayed passengers. I got the PAX counts and ETA’s from the desks and we waited to see what was going to happen. The first flight was due in at 12:30 but it was “late.” We stood outside the back of the airport facing the runways and watched the Delta and the 1st United circle overhead. Then we heard that the United diverted to San Pedro Sula. Soon after that, out of seemingly nowhere, the Delta plane landed. The runway at RTB is right smack next to the water and we could barely see the water. As the PAX were de-planing and I was welcoming them at the immigration door I saw the American jet come in, almost land and abort at the last minute. OMG, the passengers were probably freaking out. It went to Belize instead. We were told the other American also went to San Pedro Sula. After waiting around the American from San Pedro and the United finally came over from the mainland and landed. The 2nd United flight was cancelled and we heard the American wasn’t coming. I went into the office and signed out and was getting ready to leave when the airport guys said the American that went to Belize was due in at 6 PM (only 5 hours late). I signed back in and 4 of us went to wait for the plane to come in. The runway lights were on, waiting for the flight from BZE @ 6 but at 6:10 PM it was cancelled, still in Belize. As it turns out, there was no room in Belize for the plane so they refueled and took those poor passengers back to Miami and they were bringing them the next day.
It was an exhausting 7 hour day at the airport, the only good thing I can say about it is, I love meeting the new people coming to the island and I love the ladies I work with.
A few shots of random stuff before I wrap this up and go read.
This is the ARK they are building in Politilly. It is going to be a nightclub??? I’ll snap some more pics on Friday when I go to BJ’s, they have done a lot of work on it. I don’t remember who took this photo but I did not.
Yes, we have bananas, lots of apple bananas. The dogs are still enjoying them every morning with peanut butter, I’m eating them and Bill makes a smoothie every night. Sure hope we have some when our guests arrive in March.
And that my friends is a wrap. I’m off to the couch. If any of you have any hints or tips for my house cleaning woes, I’m ready..