Thursday, January 13, 2011

Then it was time to head back...

We had to leave Isla del Tigre, head back to the airport in Tegucigalpa with all its crazy power lines. We did stop at some more street vendors, and even took a small pot-making lesson, had a great lunch, and got to see the LDS temple being constructed. Then we were on a couple more flights before finally landing home- where I hugged and squeezed my kids over and over. If it weren't for them I could have stayed MUCH longer.

Island night life

The sunsets were gorgeous! Another night we made a small fire at the beach and looked at an amazing sky FILLED with stars. We also got ice cream and walked around Amapala town and pier.

This is how we fish in Honduras...

Jake and Jesus paid Beto, a local fisherman to take them out fishing.... HONDURAN STYLE. I guess they use nets a lot too, but Beto taught them the simple bait, hook, line (no pole, notice!). Yes, that's the boat they went in! Beto kept telling Jake "No te peucupes!" ("don't worry"). Hard not to when you see a big HOLE! They had a great time, and some success as well!

And this is what we catch...

Yes. We ate it for dinner. Okay, not the puffer fish though!

Views and beaches

The island is not very big at all, but has a giant mountain right in the middle. Depending on where you are on the island, you can see views of the Honduran coast as well as parts of Nicaragua and El Salvador. While there we got to visit the light sand beaches, the black sand beaches, see beautiful views and of course, play in the warm water. I was very happy to have sand beneath my toes again. I love the ocean, and miss it all the time.

Isla del Tigre

It was a couple hours drive to the coast, where we paid for a small boat to take us over to the island. Amapala is the main city and port on the island. Jesus' dad picked us up there and took us to his house where Reyna (his step-mom) made us ginormous shrimp, fish, etc and then we crashed out in the hammocks.

Sunset and sunrise.

Jesus's mom has a beautiful home on 28 acres up in the mountains, wich gorgeous canyon views. We spent a wonderful evening there. His mom cooked us traditional dinner, they taught us to play a Honduran card game and we taught them an american card game. Edgar (one of Jesus's cousins, 11 years old, who was also visiting there) grew pretty attached to Jake and didn't want us to leave the next day. Jake and took an evening walk and watched the sun set, and woke up early the next morning to watch the sun rise and take another horse ride- then it was off to our final destination- Isla del Tigre!

On the road again...

The next day was another long drive. We went from Copan to Jesus' mom's home wich is up in the mountains outside of Tegucigalpa. We just had to stop at a couple of roadside vendors to get out and stretch as well as try some local fare.

Last night in Copan

Our last night in Copan we went for a horse ride. Brynn doesn't have much experience with horses, and was a little nervous. I'll be honest, they weren't the best trained horses I've ever ridden. But we rode along a river at dusk and you could see tons of fier flies dancing along the banks, which was pretty dang cool. As we walked back to our hotel Brynn challenged some local kids to a soccer ball juggling challenge. They thought she was pretty good for a gringa, but girl in the picture "schooled her". Then we ate another fabulous meal. Jake got chimichurri steak that I was pretty envious of, and we all had yummy "liquados" in watermelon, pineapple, and mango. Have I mentioned we liked the food in Honduras? ;)

More Ruins

It's also very cool to see all the Macaws flying around the park, and think of how their ancestors were there back when the Mayans were. They're such beautiful birds, it's no wonder the Mayans depicted them so often.

Copan Ruins

To get to the ruins you follow a pretty stone path out of the city down to the park. Perhaps the most incredible thing about the park is just how little has been excavated. There are tons of hills and ancient stones piled around that they simply haven't had the investors and time to excavate yet. Copan is also unique from the ruins I saw in Guatemala in that a river dug through many of the layers of a couple of the kings' temples and so they've been able to see and study the layers here better. They even have tunnels that go under ground so you can see how they were built on top of each other. I'll be honest, I was a little scared walking around under all that heavy stone.

Copan City

Our hotel was beautiful. When we walked in and herd a tropical music band we were sold. It also had high-speed internet, so we were able to Skype withe kids back home. The city is built around a central square still decorated for the holidays. The streets are all stone. The buildings are old Spanish style and brightly painted. We had street vendor "pinchos" for dinner that night which were Fabulous. One of my favorite memories was going to the local branch Sunday morning and hearing their sweet testimonies. We also at brunch at on a beautiful terrace. We LOVED the food in Honduras- which was a pleasant surprise after all the disappointing food we had when we went to Costa Rica two years ago.