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Entered By: Mark
Entry Date: 2010-07-21 15:03:02
Subject: Another Page for the Book

Sometimes I tell close friends about my experiences here and they might sum it up with, "well, it's another chapter for your book". Today certainly doesn't qualify for a chapter, but possibly a page or two.

It's dialysis day, when I ride with Gerardo to/from the capital on a bus for his thrice a week treatment at the only hospital in the country that treats children for kidney failure. The bus ride was uneventful other than someone blowing out their "Depends" leaving half the bus holding noses and opening windows. After raising four kids, hundreds of pigs and a couple dozen cows, I know how to discern my manures; this was no childs' diaper.

Gerardo went in for dialysis and I went to the coffee shop to spend a couple hours working on my little netbook, which is understanding of the fact that I don't always have an electrical outlet nearby. It's battery lasts about five hours while running the little external modem, which also draws power from the battery. This is my normal routine on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Today I decided to break routine, get a little exercise at lunch and walk a mile aside the busy road that connects the hospital to some other major commercial and public establishments in the capital. I walked to a discount store called "Stock" that offers discounts on some of the healthy cereals not available in our home town. The walk there went as expected, lots of waiting for cars to pass through intersections. Pedestrians have no right of way, anywhere in Honduras. Let the peds beware. Anyway, I was very cautious, so no problem there. I bought some cereal and left the store.

The walk back from the store did have a little excitement to it. Mind you, the street was packed with cars so the event seemed a little odd. A couple younger men were walking in the opposite direction, both wearing yellow shirts. When they got about six foot from me, the bigger one started yelling "computadora, computadora" (computer) while the other positioned himself between us and oncoming traffic so as to block the view. The larger fellow pulled up his shirt, lifted a silver pistol from his belt and said "no problems man, no problems, computadora" (gesturing towards my laptop case).

Looks can be deceiving. It's not a lot of times you see a bonafide gringo nerd walking down the busy streets of a third world country carrying a laptop and a couple bags of groceries, but today was one of those times. I told the large fellow "No" and walked between them onward towards the hospital to wait for Gerardo. I mean, come on, if you take a computer away from a nerd, what's left in his life? He'd have been better off asking for my wallet. Somebody needs to teach these guys a little about who and what to rob. I walked on and finally found a traffic cop about a half mile down the road; told him to look out for the guys and gave him a brief description. He resumed his traffic duties immediately thereafter without speaking a word on his radio/phone. Life goes on in Honduras.

I crossed the street and returned to the coffee shop that is my office away from home. Lot's of police and security guards nearby, so I don't expect a repeat here. Nor do I plan on walking back to Stock any time soon. Gerardo should be done in about 40 minutes and I need to resume my programming job...on the computer that the robbers did not take.

Replies to this message
re: Another Page for the Book  by Adam Stockin on Thursday July 22, 2010
     re: Another Page for the Book  by Mark on Friday July 23, 2010
     re: Another Page for the Book  by Paula on Friday July 23, 2010
re: Another Page for the Book  by Susan on Wednesday July 21, 2010
re: Another Page for the Book  by Paula on Wednesday July 21, 2010

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