Corn Products on the way to Swiss Honduras
Trip Start Feb 01, 2012
21Trip End Feb 21, 2012
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Clare's alarm rang at 4 am and we dragged our big bags downstairs. People had already congregated in the hotel bar for black coffee and Ritz crackers. We were off at 5 am driving north past San Cristobal Volcano. It is active and had smoke coming out of it. The sun rose behind it and backlit the smoke for quite a pretty picture. The sun rose after we left the side of the road where we stopped to take photos
Our next stop sometime later was the gas station where we were to have breakfast. The woman behind the counter did not pay attention to our queues and so I ended up getting served last although I waited in line a long time. By the time I finished my last bite of egg sandwich, we were ready to pile back into the bus. We then stopped at a stand along the side of the road. We had cookies that Lou bought for us that were made from sugar, cornmeal, cinnamon - and maybe something else. They weren't bad but they were a little heavy
Oops, we crossed the border into Honduras sometime before breakfast. Lou told us about the customs people trying to extort extra money and about how corrupt the officials, including the police, were in Honduras. The current President had pledged to improve things and Lou says that he has managed some improvements, especially in cleaning up the police forces.
We arrived in Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras, some time around noon. Apparently, the capital has been quite dangerous. There is a new law that motorcycles or motorbikes can only carry the driver or the driver and a woman passenger. This is intended to alleviate the drive-by shootings. Lou also told someone about a shooting that occurred as she was checking into a hotel with a group of tourists. The desk clerk was shot. She went out and told the tourists they had to go to another hotel - nothing about the shooting. We had about an hour in Tegucigalpa to visit several churches, including the Cathedral, Delores and San Francisco, and the former President's mansion as well as find something to eat for lunch if we wanted. Clare, David & I ended up with Wendy's ice cream. For some reason, we were not lured into the fast food restaurant by the big yellow chicken....don't know why....
After the capital, we went up to about 1500 meters into the mountains to Valle de Angeles, the village center of Swiss Honduras. Before that we stopped at a corn product stand on the roadside. Some people tried the corn porridge and I tried the roasted corn - which
was tasty but took a long time to eat because it wasn't as tender as our sweet corn. There were some great rooster
combs on the chickens there so I took quite a few photos. The chickens' necks were rather bare looking. Jane and Naomi tried the corn fritters and really liked them.
The town of Valle de Angeles is quite touristy with lots of souvenir shops. There are some lovely carved wooden boxes (the area is renowned for its mahogany carving). I should have bought one. I did buy some postcards from Honduras but no stamps. I saw some fridge magnets that I liked but thought they were too pricey. I walked around a bit and then joined Jane and Naomi who were sitting at an outdoor restaurant. Kerry joined us, then Jane & Naomi left and Kerry and I chatted until we started to think about meeting Lou and the others for the streetside dinner of baleadas - a Honduran specialty of tortillas with cheese and other fillings. The one I had was quite tasty but very messy. Then we joined Clare and David for dinner at a restaurant. I was shy about coming in because I was still eating my baleada, but the owner told me to come in. I was quite full, so I just ordered a drink. The owner had to go out to buy beer to fill David's order.
After a cold shower and some repacking, I need to brush my teeth and go to bed for another early start tomorrow.