Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Mud Slinging starts

As the elections draw near the mud slinging has started. Micheletti is accusing the now president Zelaya of trying to have him murdered. This could well be true, but I don´t know one way or the other. However, things remain to be seen. Zelaya cannot run for another term, but it seems that the Liberal party has been turned on its ears lately. They are imploding as we speak and have almost zero chance of winning the election in November because of all the outrageousness that has occurred during the past few months.
Zelaya is one of the most unpopular presidents in the history of Honduras. Most of it does not have to do with the economy, because in spite of him increasing the minimum wage he is very unpopular. The reasons are corruption pure and simple.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

For The Love of a Dog



A few years ago I never would have believed that I could become so attached to a dog. Then I was given a 2 month old chihuahua. We named him Mango. It is 2 years later and I cannot imagine life without him. His eyes tell me what he wants. I thnk I found my kindrid spirit when I found him.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

It Finally Rained...right on the topless Convertible...



Wouldn´t you know I would be busy on the phone with a driver and the rain starts to come down right on the inside of the Cabby..My neighbor went bananas trying to get my attention to let me know it was raining..she finally set off the alarm on it on purpose so I would look outside. lol. Then I squawked, dropped the phone, got the keys and ran to put up the roof. We laughed about it later. I tend to leave the top down during the day if it is not raining, because the neighborhood is fairly safe. I just set the alarm and no one bothers it. What a day yesterday was.

Today is going to be pretty busy to. The contractor is coming to take some more measurements, bring some sketches and go over the details while we wait for the cured wood to be completed. He is going to be pulling the wood out of the ceiling that we have and see what is usable and what isn´t we have to discuss the new central air units going in upstairs as well. The last thing is going to be replacing windows with the style I want. There is a new French style popular here I just adore, but I will have to ok that with the mister first. He is already grumbling about the cost of the ceramic tiles I picked for the stairs.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Busy Day

It is Monday so I am running around short on time...I will be on this evening to post about the days events.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Water

I ended up without the wash getting done today or even dishes...the water is mucky looking...eek! This happens every year when the rain first starts for some reason the sand gets in the lines and the water comes out like mud. We have bottled water but I refuse let anything be washed clothes, dishes, ect in anything looking that way...hopefully sanitation will be out cleaning the tubes tomorrow or Monday.

Giant Pichete


For those of you who do not know what a Pichete is it is a sort of lizard that predominately is in homes in this region. They can shock you when you first see them. The first time I saw a lizard inside my house I was ready to run for the hills. It was explained to me these animals are a blessing as they eat mosquitos and other bugs. Well I have one that likes to hide in a small space behind the cabinets, he started out tiny now this morning he got ticked when I flipped on the light switch to the kitchen and screeched at me...I think he was mad about the light. I was shocked at how big this thing that once had been the size of my pinky finger had gotten...I think I will need to relocate him, he looked scary.


Pichete is like the Geiko but they are white in color...or the ones in my house are anyway. I saw a baby yesterday. I don´t mind the babies but the big ones give me the willies. They supposedly were brought by the Japanese as a gift and have proliferated.

I posted a pic I found online of one since the ones here are too quick for me to get a good pic of them..but in English they are called House Geiko. So I wasn´t too wrong.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Yes, there is a Pizza Hut in Honduras











and tons of other American restaurants, malls, ect. I find it funny that many people in the US figure that everyone here except the filthy rich live in mud huts with thatch roof houses..most don´t. Here I have provided some of the beautiful pics of Honduras. I will provide pics that match the poorest too just not in this post.




House remodeling



May 15, 2009
We will be starting to remodel the house on the 20th of this month. We are starting with the ceilings. I hate plain ceilings with no life to them so this is what I picked out. If anyone has suggestions let me know. The one that is a bathroom picture is going in my master bedroom the other is going into the upstairs living area. We are just going to redo the outside ceilings as we had not completed them from when we lost our roof last year and the ceilings were damaged, but the pigeons are driving me bananas. I will talk about tin roofs, cats and pigeons later, but they are enough to drive anyone to have a nervous breakdown. We have basically what amounts to a tin roof when we had clay tile before. However, it is aluminum as my husband pointed out.

Rain is Finally Here



Looks like the rain has finally arrived. We are chopping down the fields, burning, and replanting for the cows in Olancho so that there will be plenty of food for them in the dry season. I am planting 8 avocado trees, 8 mango trees, and 8 sour orange trees this season too. Don´t ask why 8 of each it just seemed like a good number to start with so I will go from there.

We have bought some milk cows that have just been weaned to add to the small flock we have. However, a little at a time will eventually get us to where we want to be. Our caretaker is thankfully very trustworthy. He works hard and is content with the way we are toward them.

We shall see how the rain season goes. Hopefully there won´t be much flooding or too many storms this season.

I still laugh when I think about the cows. My husband had been in the states and not been out to the property recently so he decided to go visit the bull, Cherokee. We bought him when he was just barely weaned 2 years ago. He is a beautiful, white Brahman bull and he chased my poor husband up the tree and was head butting the tree for half an hour before anyone could get him to get interested in anything else. He got his horns clipped after that though. My husband is pretty stubborn so he wasn´t amused when I was rolling in laughter and said´, ¨Good boy, Cherokee.¨

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Americans who consider living abroad


May 14, 2009
I encourage people who want to live abroad to think about this for many years before deciding to do something as extreme as moving to another country. The experience can be wonderful, but it can also be taxing on you culturally. The person should travel to several locations during their vacations to decide which areas best suit them. They should clearly not stay in tourist zones as this does not give them a true look at the local culture. Learn the language for the country you are preparing to live in. Do your best to learn the culture, even the little things like the way they dress, how they think about family, marriage, their opinion or attitudes toward Americans, so forth.

The area should suit what your income level will be. Look into local immigration laws to make sure that you can live permenently in the area and own property.

For instance, I moved to Honduras. The income level here is clearly lower than in the states. A person with only a $1000 social security check monthly can live here with relative comfort, but the life is not easy here. Be prepared to bring your automobile, pay a large import fee, ect. The fees for the vehicle are lower if it is a pickup truck, but they do not allow the import of vehicles older than 12 years old for a pickup truck and 10 years old for a car. Cars import fees are very expensive. For instance last year we brought a 10 year old convertible VW Cabrio, the car cost us 36,000 lempiras or $1,906. This is a large sum for the vehicle. Their value of the car is not based on blue book value. If you paid much less for your car be prepared to prove it with receipts and or cancelled checks.

When you move to Honduras permenently there is a law that allows you to import your household goods free of import fees. So you may want to inquire at the embassy in reference to this. If you want to move here you should come stay during your vacation in areas you are concidering. I would not recommend retiring in Roatan unless you are going to be getting a fairly good retirement income, because the cost of living on the island is significantly higher than it is on the mainland. There are alternatives. The coast covers 3 sides of Honduras if you want to live close to the beach. There is La Ceiba, Tela, Omoa, Cortes, and many other areas. If you do not deal well with heat there is areas such as Lago Yajoa which is fairly temperate most of the year, but areas like San Pedro Sula and Choluteca feels like the entrance to hell during some months of the year.

There is this blog plus a few others that talk about local cultures of countries like Honduras, Mexico, ect. There are negatives, but there are plenty of positives as well.

Good luck.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Storm season coming again


This was Hurricane Mitch in Oct 1998 it destroyed most of the country, but led way to the prosperity that is beginning to give way in some major cities here. However, I had my first reencounter with major storms here since Hurricane Mitch when I came during the storm in 1998.
I moved to Honduras in January 2008. I had only been living here for five months when a bad storm blew in with the feeling of a Texas storm, but I shook it off thinking I was just being silly because after all tornadoes don´t happen in Honduras. Boy was I ever wrong. The storm blew in an F2 tornado that wiped out hundreds of huge trees. Took out my roof and spread it over the entirety of the neighborhood leaving everyone in shock since supposedly I had the best built house in the neighborhood. Of course, we never counted on a direct hit by an F2 tornado. It took out the second floor wall of another house killing the owner just one block away from me. It uprooted a huge mango tree across the street from us laying it on the roof of my car. I walked into my roofless house in shock there was literally a waterfall on my staircase(good thing we have ceramic instead of carpet). It took almost two weeks to register in my mind what had really happened. Now we are embarking on a new season...I shall see if this one goes better than the last. Our pet chiuahua is not ready, he hates the rain. We affectionately named him Mango for his love of begging for and actually eating this fruit.

Politics in Honduras


May 13, 2009
Election time is drawing near in Honduras and politics are really heating up here. This is a picture I took on the Saturday before Mother´s Day at a campaign rally for the Nationalist party. The candidate for president is Porfierio Lobo, or affectionately known as Pepe. My husband who is Honduran spent his entire life living next door to Pepe
Lobo in Juticalpa. Yes, my husband is ´Olanchano´for those who know about Honduras they are probably choking in surprise. However, he isn´t bad he is really pretty good, not as machista as the front he puts on. He is really a teddy bear who gives me just about anything I want.
The gray haired man is Dr. Tuky BendaƱas. He is running for mayor of San Pedro Sula. He is a well known gynecologist and on my list of people I like after the beautiful palm trees he gave out for mother´s day. What a nice thing to do...the two I was given are on my patio.
Of course, their platform is about change. The cuarta urna promoted by the very unpopular president Zelaya is causing a bit of havoc. Most people understand his reform is ´dictatorship´. People here are not very trusting when it comes to police and politics. It takes some time to get used to, but you do get accostumed to why they don´t trust the police or politicians.
Of all of the candidates he is probably the one who will be the toughest on the gangs and would most probably try to push through the death penalty. I am of mixed emotions with the death penalty especially with a justice system like they have here. However, with the amount of crime something has to happen and the one who did the most about it was condemned the hardest by civil rights groups. This was the former president Ricardo Maduro.
Sometimes it is difficult to adjust from the US way to the Honduran way. The gringa in La Ceiba does a very good job of explaining some of the things about life from a gringo perspective. However, I thing she might see things different than I do, because I am Hispanic so I don´t exactly see things from a white-brown perspective.
More later