Thursday, July 22, 2010

Being able to laugh at yourself, and my trip to Tegucigalpa

What I am about to share with you is personal, but it shows you how in order to live in Honduras, you have to be able to LAUGH at everything. Even things that arent funny at the time. You especially have to be able to laugh at yourself.

It was January 22 this year that I arrived back in Honduras. Since I havent gotten my residency yet, I came in on a 90 day tourist visa. That meant that my visa expired on April 22. Mine, Andre's and Jordan's. So I had to decide did I want to spend all of that money (that we really didnt have at that time) to leave the country and go to Mexico (we went to Belize last year, and if I can help it, I will never go again. It sucked!) for a couple of days to renew our tourist visas or apply for a 30 day extension for all of us. It was way cheaper to just apply for the extension, and save up the extra money over the next 4 weeks. The only problem was that you could no longer apply for the extension in La Ceiba, which meant road trip to Tegucigalpa.

I was excited to go. Mainly because 9 days later I would be leaving for the US for 7 months, and it meant I would get a bit of alone time with my husband. Also because I had never been to Tegucigalpa, and I wanted to visit. But lets be honest, I really just wanted a *date* with my husband, LOL. The bus we needed to take left from Tocoa at 1:30AM. The plan was to *try* to get to Tegucigalpa, do what we needed to do, and try to catch the last bus back to Tocoa the same day. We knew we probably wouldnt be able to do that, but we were gonna try. But if not, then we would stay the night in Teguc, then catch the first bus back in the AM.

So Monday afternoon I packed most of our stuff that we would need, and I stayed up late making some food to bring with us on the bus. I then went to bed, and less than an hour later I was up getting ready to go. Now, if you have visited any blogs of people who live in (or visit) Central American countries, you know that when you travel, you always, always, ALWAYS pack toilet paper. And I always do. I will be honest though, in the 2 years in Honduras, I never needed the TP that I packed. But I pack it anyways.

Now its 1AM and I am sitting at the bus stop in Tocoa waiting for the bus to come, and I have to go to the bathroom. I get up, go to the bathroom, and all of a sudden I dont feel so good. My stomach is feeling funny, and I now have diarrhea. And the bathroom has no toilet paper. No problem though, because I am prepared. I get my backpack, and pull out the TP. But wait, where is the TP? It seems that when I was repacking the last minute stuff I must have taken out the TP and not put it back. Oh thats just great. Now what am I going to do? Don't ever say that I am not resourceful. After looking around and realizing there is NOTHING that can be used as TP, I pull off my shoes, and my socks, and use one of my socks as TP. Oh boy. I drop the sock in the trash, wash my hands, and out to wait for the bus I go. I feel better, so I figure, well thats good, the trip will be just fine, and 10 minutes later I am settling down on the bus, hoping I can go back to sleep.

If you have never been on a bus trip in Honduras, let me fill you in a bit on what to expect. Expect to have the bus filled with as many people as possible, (although one company that I usually use wont allow more people on than there are seats - but we didnt use them to go to Teguc) to stop at every cross road to pick up more people, but in a 10 hour bus ride only stop once, for 10 minutes, to go to the bathroom and get food.

So off and on, I managed to doze and about 8AM, or 7 hours into the ride I am now wide awake, and I have to go to the bathroom. My stomach is rolling, and I am just feeling HORRIBLE. I said a prayer of thanks that I didnt have to hit the bathroom earlier than 7 hours, but my body was making up for it now. I am looking out the window as we go up and down these mountains, wondering when are we going to STOP. I wake up Lale and ask him how much longer, and he is so sweet, he tells me - 4 more hours or so. This bus doesnt stop. WHAT??!?!?!?!?! I can't make it 4 more hours. I am seriously in tears. Not crying, but about to. I told him my problem and asked him what am I supposed to do. Hold it he says. WTH?? You cant really hold diarrhea honey, sorry. I told him to ask the guy who is collecting money how long till we stop. It took me a good 15 minutes of harrassing him before he finally asked the guy. We will be stopping in about 5 minutes the guy said. Oh PRAISE THE LORD. I was so bad off I had chills.

The bus stops, and I run out and run to the bathroom, because let me tell you I wouldnt be able to wait in line. So, now Im done, and guess what, no TP in this place either. BUT I still had my other sock in my pocket, so I was ok. I finished up, went to the store where we stopped, stocked up on some Honduran version of Immodium AD, and I bought 2 rolls of TP. And some soda and crackers. Hoping it would help settle my stomach.

This is what I saw on most of my trip TO Teguc. The back of the curtain on the bus. I kept my head burried and prayed into it.

Back on the bus, I asked about how much longer till we are in Teguc. Three hours or so was the answer. I thought well I lasted 7 hours, so 3 hours shouldnt be that bad. Well let me tell you how wrong I was. By the time we were in Teguc, but not at the bus stop I was freaking out. I told Lale that I would have to get off wherever we were and find a toilet or do my business on the side of the road because I just wouldnt be able to make it to the bus stop. We could catch a cab if we had to. He was so mad at me. he is like we are almost there, just hold it. Again with the hold it business. WHATEVER. I was able to hold it until we were at the bus terminal, but man, that bus driver wouldnt open the doors. He had to park the bus just so. In my head I am screaming at these people to just let me off the damn bus. You will be glad to know, that I was able to make it to the bathroom at the bus terminal, but barely. By this point I was feeling like death. Actually I think death would have been an improvement.


I kept popping my Immodiums, and praying. Lale wanted to go right to the Immigration office, where as I wanted to find a hotel room, drop my stuff off, and possibly be near a bathroom. He won. Ugh. So off to the Immigration office we went. The Immodiums were finally starting to kick in a bit, and I was feeling a teeny tiny bit better. At the Immigration office there were 3 lines that we had to wait in. So I waited in one, sent him to the bank line to wait, then when I was done in my line, I sent him to the third line while I finished up with the bank. So it took us less than an hour to get everything done, and we were heading back to find a hotel.


We got our hotel room, went to the cafeteria and ordered some food. I ate a couple of bites and gave him my plate. He was so hungry, he ate his plate, my plate and ordered another plate. Then we went back to the hotel room where I laid down and went to sleep. By now it was 1PM. I slept until 7PM. We both woke up, he ordered dinner - 2 hamburgers and fries. The hamburgers smelled weird because it wasnt ground beef hamburgers. It was like a mixed mystery meat type of burger, so I didnt eat mine. I just ate the fries and gave him my burger. Then by 7:30PM I was asleep again until 5AM, getting up just once or twice. What a GREAT date/one on one time I had with my husband, LMAO


When I got up at 5AM, I was feeling almost at 100%. I took a shower, got dressed and out the door we went to catch the 6AM bus back to Tocoa. While I was feeling better though, he kept saying his stomach felt a little funny. I had bought more Immodium, so I got him a couple as well and told him to take them.


6AM and we are back on the bus heading home. This time I was able to stay awake and take pictures and video of everything we passed. Lale on the other hand wasnt feeling as well as I was. He was complaining that he had to go to the bathroom, and I just kept telling him to HOLD IT. And enjoyed telling him that too. You know what they say about paybacks, LOL.


I didnt like Tegucigalpa, or the little bit that I saw of it. I didnt like the trip there or back. Even if I wasnt sick, I wouldnt have enjoyed the trip. I am not a city girl at all, and to me Teguc was just ugly. There was some pretty scenery on the way there and back, but the city of Teguc did nothing for me. If I never go back, well I wont be sad.


I will say though, that on the trip I saw TONS of houses with the CLARO satelite on top of their houses, and I couldnt help but wonder if they had as hard of a time getting their cable as Ms Patty and I did.



Hannah said...

What a nightmare!! Next time you're in Tegus let me know...we can take you guys to dinner or something! :)

Jennifer said...

Thats sweet. Although if i can help it, we wont be going back to Teguc, LOL.

BUT if we do, I will let you know. I have something for you that I am going to ship down in a box, so when the box gets to Honduras I am going to somehow get in touch with you and have the little something sent to you, I guess on a bus. Do you know where the Mirna bus office is in Teguc? Is it close to you? I (or hubby) can send it from Tocoa and then you would just have to pick it up from there.


Amie V said...

oh my gosh, i know that feeling! *shudders* and i'm so glad you got some payback. hold it, indeed. huh. =D

Anonymous said...

I was feeling your pain!
Too bad you didn't have time to see some of Tegucigalpa, its not all bad-
And Belize, I agree, it sucks, and can't understand why so many people love, Love it- So, what was it you found that made Belize suck?


Lynette said...

Oh my. I'm glad you both were able to make it. That would be my worse nightmare. I agree with you about Teguc. I'm not a city girl either and when I visited Honduras the thought that all cities are the same crossed my mind. I was actually thinking about NYC when I was there.

Olancho Bound Gringa said...

This story was the entertainment of the evening @ my house! LOL. I know it wasn't funny @ the time. Bless your heart, I cannot even imagine but I will FOREVER hold that memory in my head so that I will NEVER forget to take toilet paper with me to Honduras!

Spunky Maori said...

I had a similar event on our way to the airport in San Pedro Sula. The airport didn't have toilet paper, so fortunately I had baby wipes and didn't have to use my socks. Both me and Yancarlo were having diaherra so I was praying on the plane ride back because the bathrooms are so small. Fortunately we were able to make it to Dallas without incident.