There are three things (possibly more) That I have learned in the past two weeks: 1) It is perfectly acceptable not to go to school when the new president climbs his throne. The prince of Spain is coming and anyway, most education centres will be closed anyway! 2) Mangoes have the size of small pumpkins (actually, I‘ve seen pumpkins that were smaller than some of the mangoes here)! 3) Not only does my host family own a jet ski, they also rent out their kitchen once a week, so a local TV team can come and film their cooking show!
People ask a lot what I have been up to these past few days and I always have to tell them that, well, not much. But it‘s not true that there is nothing to tell. I‘m living in a world of a million new colours, smells and impressions; so here‘s what I‘ve seen…
Last week I visited the city centre for the first time, thus being introduced to the public transport system. Tegucigalpa is a marmite town, one that you either love or hate. There are so many little corners to discover, I really can‘t wait until I know my own way around. Right now I‘m still very dependent on all the people around me. Really beautiful was the trip to El Picacho, a mountain (it‘s a hill in Swiss terms!) from where you get a great view over the entire city. I finally now where I live! You also get to see the poor parts, the ones with houses made out of card board boxes. They exist right next to gorgeous mansions, not unlike the one I live in. There‘s a whole different world, just outside my door step, and I‘m sitting here and it doesn‘t feel remotely close or real at all. It‘s like the quote that says, „Privilege is when you think that something is not a problem because it‘s not a problem to you personally“.
But just because it doesn‘t feel like a problem when I‘m sitting on my bed in a room with pink walls (I‘m not kidding here!) doesn‘t mean it isn‘t. You don‘t really notice small things anymore, like that fact that the cars‘ doors are always locked when you‘re driving or that there‘s never a gate standing open, no matter how safe the street. I mean, I couldn‘t go to my language class on monday when the new president took on his job because the risk was too high I might get into some violent riot. How is that not my problem? That is a huge problem! For me these things are just small inconveniences, but for the majority of people it‘s really quite dramatically about life and death. It‘s the old fashioned iceberg – we are sitting on its sommet and think that what we see is all there is to see. But that‘s not true, because if it were the Titanic would not have sunk and Jack and Rose would have lived happily ever after.
On sunday my family took me to San Lorenzo, a small town at the pacific coast. Here‘s how they announced the trip: „Noemi, ahorita nos vamos a comer!“ — „Noemi, we‘re going to have lunch now!“ Great, and since there‘s hardly any sun and a lot of wind in Tegucigalpa, why change into something else? Well, they neglected to tell me that lunch was a three hour car ride away and that 36°C were expecting us. I was literally dying (misuse of the word literally, I apologize)!
It was lovely, though. We passed a lot of rural areas and Honduras really showed off its beauty. My family tried to explain to me how rich the country actually is in its natural resources. It‘s sickening to think how globalisation degraded it to one of the world‘s poorest ones! San Lorenzo is actually the pacific harbour from where ships transport the resources to Asia and all over the world.
As we passed the card board constructions that only the most generous person would call houses, my host mum suddenly asked, „¿Dónde está Morazán?“ — „Where is Morazán?“ Like many other people she, too, believes that what Honduras needs is an idealistic leader. And maybe her hopes are not too far fetched. After all, there‘s so much love for this country; no matter who you ask, the answer will always be the same: „Honduras es un país hermoso!“ — „Honduras is a beautiful country!“
I was going to use this as the end of this week‘s post, but seeing as I didn‘t upload it on time I‘m going to ruin this perfect finish line with a cliff hanger. I started working in my project yesterday. It‘s called „Chiminike“ and it‘s an interactive children‘s museum. It‘s really cool and I instantly felt very welcome. Also, I took a cab all by myself for the first time today! But more on that next week (suspense is a sexy thing!)!
And darn, I need to ruin this great cliff hanger with my personal craving of telling everyone that the trailer for „The Fault In Our Stars“ is out. It makes me use expressions like OMGOMFGAAAAAHRGGOMFGWORDSCANTEVENDESCRIBEHOWEXCITEDIAMRIGHTNOWOMFG! …yeah, I have problem!
I really do, but here‘s the trailer: