Posted by: Thida | July 24, 2011

Islands, lemons and watermelon

Sandía (watermelon)

(Désolée à mes amis francophones, je n’ai pas d’énergie pour faire la traduction en français aujourd’hui!)

What a relaxing weekend! It’s hard to believe I’m here to work when I get to spend the weekend on the beach, letting time go by while watching waves rolling on the sand.

Our group of international volunteers is growing. Two more recruits arrived last week and we are now seven volunteers from Oxfam-Québec currently working in Honduras. We didn’t waste any time and we organized a little getaway to Isla El Tigre, in the Gulf of Fonseca, where the village of Amapala is.

We left Saturday morning by bus and reached Coyolito. From there, we all climbed on a boat to reach our destination. The trip lasted about 1h30 from San Lorenzo.

The bus ride was “entertaining” as we listened to a man trying to collect money and talking about Jesus and God. As soon as he finished his speech, music from the 80s started blaring from the speakers of the bus. Quite a mix!

Along the way we saw many farmers picking up watermelons as we are now in full watermelon season. I can attest that they taste great! Super sweet and juicy! I made my first watermelon juice today with my brand new blender! What a treat!

On the Island there are a few beaches. We arrived at Playa El Burro then we went to Playa Negra and Playa Grande. Being situated in a gulf doesn’t create great beaches with white sand and clear blue water. It was acceptable enough though especially since in San Lorenzo the only place where you can go for a dip is in a pool.

We went around town in a motor taxi and I was surprised to see nice brick roads. The island is very quiet and peaceful. The main port of Honduras used to be in Amapala but it has now moved to San Lorenzo. You get the feeling that there was an effort to build the city once and now it seems that it’s on a standstill. For instance, we saw a dilapidated building that used to be a casino. I’m sure this casino was once really nice and glamourous. Now, walls are missing, bricks are falling and it looked like people were squatting there.

Sunday morning, we did a boat tour and we saw the surrounding islands. I then realized that this was the first time I could see three countries at once: Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador.

On some of these islands there is clear evidence of wealth: huge and beautiful houses near the water. Quite a contrast from what we witness in the country side where we work.

So that’s all we did really: going around town, being tourists, sitting at the beach, chilling in hammocks, eating shrimp and drinking beer, not feeling guilty about wasting time. I think for all of us it felt like therapy and probably an 180o from our lives in Canada.

I got back in San Lorenzo on Sunday afternoon; right went the heat is at its peak. I had a big glass of home-made lemonade that I made from limes from the tree in my backyard.

It’s hard to believe that I’m going back to the office tomorrow. Well, can’t complain! :)

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  1. Wow Thida!

    La vie que tu as vécue ce weed end est digne d’un film de découvertes et d’aventures! Continue, tu me fais rêver!

    Bonne journée,

    Jo xxx

    • Merci Johanne! Gros bisous xox

  2. Great pictures Thida. I can’t wait to have my own freshly prepared watermelon/lemon juice…uummm! Miss you xo

    • :) Miss you too xox

  3. Hi Thida,

    I loved your description of your bus ride. I had a similar experience on the bus in Bolivia. Some woman got on the bus in one of the small communities and lectured the travellers (either about God or politics – I have never been quite sure) until the next town and then she got off and that was that. At the next station a group of teachers who were going on a vacation hopped on the bus, pulled out their musical instruments and started playing and singing until we reached our destination. It was wonderful to experience such vibrant life on the bus.

    I just returned from a 2 week trip to Bulgaria. Veronica was part of an international dance festival in Veliko Tarnovo. It was fabulous opportunity to see a part of the world I had little knowledge of and meet many many people from countries around the world. I think I just about exploded from eating all the delicious fresh, ripe and flavourful tomatoes, cucumbers, peaches and apricots. Didn’t see any watermelon though!

    Thanks for you great updates – it’s great to hear you are still finding much new and engaging to see and do. Take care, Corinne

    • Hi Corinne,
      So great to hear from you! Thank YOU for your update. Seems like you had a wonderful and enriching vacation! Take care now! xox

  4. Profite bien de ces moments de détente, ils sont bien mérités!!

  5. awesome pictures!! sounds amazing! we think of you you often!!

    • Thinking of you guys too! Lots of love xoxo

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