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Current Location: La Ceiba, Honduras

02.19.07

Song stuck in my head: Highway Companion (Tom Petty)
Price of beer in a bar: around US$0.80, depending on the exchange rate
they give you

When I was a kid one of my elementary school teachers described to the
class an experimental school in England where the kids were in total
control.  They could choose to be taught (teachers were available for
scheduling classroom time with), or choose to do nothing at all.
Eventually many of the students created an atmosphere that reflected
more traditional educational institutions in many significant ways.  I
don’t remember the name of the school, though many of you know of it,
it’s rather famous.

So our teacher reasoned that if we shouldn’t complain about any of the
structural aspects of our education because, given the chance, we’d
basically choose to emulate it anyway.  I’m sure she actually believed
(most of my elementary teachers were hopelessly inadequate to instruct
even at the elementary level) that the part CHOICE and AUTONOMY played
in this experiment were somehow nullified by it’s result and could be
discarded from any future considerations.  This experience occurs to
me often out here, deciding day by day what to do and where next to do
it.

Last monday I was newly arrived in Punta Gorda where I stayed for a
couple of days, saying goodbye to Lynnai and Kathrin as they boated
off to Guatemala.  I began my long fight with belizean banks over how
much money I could have and why they couldn’t exchange any of it or
sell me any travelers checks even though the signs inside and out
promised they’d do both.  I returned to Placencia on Wednesday, booked
a private room at lydia’s, grabbed some food and headed to the beach.
That evening I had dinner and drinks with 2 girls from London and a
guy from Nashville that I had met on the ferry from Independence to
Placencia.  The next morning, under my regular palm tree, I ran into
them again and we began a long day of passing glasses of “1 Barrel”
rum and headphones back and forth, showing off whatever music we had on
hand.  They had some great stuff, btw, but I won’t mention any names
because I’m not about to get stuck in “my favorite band is more
obscure than your favorite band” arguments when I’m paying for
internet use by the hour (remember those days, dial-up friends?).
Either way, it was one of my favorite days on the beach, with good
booze, company, and music.

The next morning I left for Honduras, sharing the ferry with 2 Danish
girls that had been staying at Lydia’s and 2 Irish guys that proved to
be pretty cool.  John is traveling for about as long as I hope to and
we’ll likely cross paths again.  Liam looks like Tommy Lee with club
contacts in and I later found out, I’m not making this up, nurses
injured and abused horses back to health, amongst other horsely
pursuits.  The girls could not contain themselves.  I think he had to
be lying, trying to impress them.  At least I hope he was.  Guys like
that shouldn’t exist.  It’s bad enough that I end up hanging around so
many surfers (the physical manifestations of every 10 year old girl’s
notebook doodling fantasy life), but now you’re going to throw
ink-heavy, pierced rock and roller horse whisperers into the mix?
That can not be good for my self esteem.

So we all shared the boat ride over and it’s been raining ever since.
The dock is closed in La Ceiba, which means I can’t get a boat to
Utila, an island on which I’ll learn scuba and engage in other
activities that would be cost-prohibitive elsewhere.  My most recent
room mate, Chris, has stated his intention to fly into Honduras and
meet me on the first of March, so I’m holding on the diving until we
can take it together anyway.  The Danish girls were staying with me
until yesterday, when they gave up on waiting for the sun and headed
for Guatemala.  I couldn’t decide what to do for the next 10 days.  La
Ceiba is not that exciting.

But this morning I talked to a Spanish School and said “when can I
start?”.  Now I’m in a week of spanish lessons (with homestay) which
should help me pass the time.  Things here are that fantasy cheap that
you seldom find when you go looking.  My room with the girls, with fan
and private bath, was US$6.50 per night total.

Money is still up in the air, but my bank has helped me out immensely
and Chris’s visit should simplify things as well.

I’m now considering Guatemala as my next country.  I didn’t really
have any plans to visit, but everyone is talking it up so much
(especially Antigua), that I’m starting to reconsider.  We’ll see.

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