All 11 of us thankfully made it to Honuras without too much issue, though my suitcase looked like it spent a little time with a gorilla in cargo. The landing into Honduras was not as scary as I thought, but it was pretty cool. We came in so low you thought the wings would literally clip the houses below. The planes come in so low I guess there is a real concern that planes could hit an antena or two. The houses we flew over were like nothing I had ever seen. It looked like a bunch of children`s forts all crammed together on a mountain side.
For all those with questions about the impact of the Swine Flu... When we got to the airport we had to sign a paper stating that we did not have any flu symptoms or be around anyone with flu symptoms for the past week. We then had a thermal scan to make sure we didn´t have a fever. They were passing out handouts cautioning anyone coming from Mexico or the US. It was funny that the people handing out the forms had masks on but no one else in the airport did. Good thing flus are not air bound ;-)
When we got to El Hogar the skies just opened up and it poured for hours. While the rain was not ideal, we were just thankful that we, along with our van with luggage out on the roof, made it to El Hogar before the rain.
Due to the rain and the fact that it was Saturday, we didn`t initially see many children. Some of the children get to go home or be with family over the weekend. Claudia does home visits to ensure that the children will be safe and have food if they go home. For children that do not have families or a safe home to go to, they spend the weekends at el Hogar.
Later in the evening we spent some time playing inside with the children. Some of the group made paper airplanes, some were playing catch with Beanie Babies and some watched 101 Dalmations in Spanish (believe it or not Cruella is even more scary when you don´t understand what she is saying).
I have to admit I have already gotten my injury out of the way and I haven´t even picked up a tool yet. Yes I hurt myself making paper airplanes and no it wasn´t a paper cut. I was sitting on a marble tile floor and as I slid my hand along the edge of the tile I sliced myself. Ok, not a mjaor injury, but there was blood, so it should count ;-)
It was a blast playing with the children. Watching them get excited whether it be for a good throw of a plane, a great catch of a Beanie Baby or laughing at a classic of a movie. So far this trip has already been made up of a lot of touching moments. One little boy came up and gave a few of us a big hug. He didn`t know my name, but he hugged me so tightly you would have thought we were family. The fact that the hug of a stranger was that significant was just heart breaking to me. Another little boy came up to me asked me my name and said `God Bless You` which felt so sweet. And then there is my new buddy Ramone. For a while we just sat and watched a little bit of the movie until he then moved across the room so we could throw paper airplanes to each other (after my injury I stuck to throwing the planes not making them ;-). Any time I had a really good throw, Ramone would give me a thums up and a big smile. I may not understand much Spanish or he English, but we were getting along just great. I suspect Ramone will show up in a few more postings.
Today being Sunday, the families drop off the children to stay here the rest of the week. It was hard to comprehend what Sunday`s must be like for the families or the children. There was one little boy sitting on a wall with his mother. She was talking to him and every few seconds he would reach out and give her a peck on the cheek. It was such a sweet moment between mother and son. Sadly there were too many families dropping off their children today.
But there were fun moments today as well. After attending Mass we went to McDonalds. We did not go through the Auto Mac (drive thru) but did sit at tables where they actually have a waitress take your order. All of the children got the same Happy Meals and the older boys and us adults got to order from the McMenu. I haven´t been to a McDonalds in years - have they gotten this tacky in the states as well? It was cute watching the kids with their Happy Meals, so of them decided to only eat part of their lunch. When they were done they packed up their food in the box and spent some time playing on the indoor gym. On our way back to El Hogar we stopped at the super market which happened to have a guard with a very large rifle standing in front. After only a few seconds in the store we heard this very familiar chime - someone had just turned on a Windows machine. You should have seen all our ears perk up.
Once we got back to El Hogar we changed our clothes so we could play with the children. I quickly came across my buddy Ramone. He waved me over to join him and another little boy in kicking a ball around. Ramone was very courteous making sure that we alternated taking turns. Or if the ball went too far and he would go and get it for me so I could take my turn. I got a few more thumbs up and a grin (and thankfully none of them when a ball went astray and hit a classmate). We were playing for a while and Rachel came over and joined us. These boys have some amazing footwork. Honestly I was just thrilled that I didn´t trip over my own feet.
Later there was kickball with a few other boys, Tara, Stuart and Mark T. It was amazing how the rules kept changing. The boys had us running ALL OVER THE PLACE. They were running the bases, but I think we got the better workout. We were getting killed, but we were thankfully saved by the snack bell.
Tomorrow is our first day of work so I will wrap up so I can get some sleep before the rooster starts crowing around 3am and the car alarm goes off.
Only two days in and the trip has already been amazing. I can´t wait to see what the rest of the week brings!
- A few parting thoughts
- The Final Two Days (part 3 - the final day)
- The Final Two Days (part 2 - the ice cream party)
- The Final Two Days (part 1)
- Greatest hits
- A place called home
- Closing out the incredible week at in Honduras
- How can it be Thursday ALREADY??
- Touring Teguc
- Another day, another lesson
- Soccer Blow-Out
- What a day!
- Too Many Hours with a Wheelbarrow?
- Thursday afternoon - on work crew again!
- Impressed by El Hogar
- Sopa con banana, take 2
- Thursday visit to the Episcopal Agricultural Schoo...
- My friend Pedro
- Kids at School and Play
- Return to Amarateca
- Things that Go Honk in the Night
- A day at the Instituto Technico Santa Maria
- Wheelbarrow Capsize
- Another day, another reality check
- Creating The Bean Blog
- The Widowmaker
- Day 4 of our Honduras trip is winding down, I am s...
- All the hard labor we could ask for - and then som...
- Sweat, Tortillas, Dirt, and Tears
- Day 3! More beans!!! We are having so much fun.. W...
- Play-time Snag
- A very full Monday at El Hogar!
- It is, after all, a school
- Where do I begin?
- A day of thanks
- Arrival weekend in Tegucigalpa!
- A Trip to the Chinese Market
- Arrival in Honduras
- Beanie-Baby Workout
- Third time's a Charm
- ▼ May (43)