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Published: September 30th 2006
Guess what? We had an early start this morning, an occurrence that is going to be common over the coming months with the distances we are about to travel. Anyway, today we were up for a 6.20am ferry back to the mainland.
We both liked Utila very much and it is perfect for a backpacker budget, if diving is what you're looking for. We were very comfortable there and had a good experience. We don't think we experienced the best diving that the island has to offer, though, but we mainly put this down to the time of year (the rainy season, which is now, means lots of water flowing from rivers into the ocean, churning up the ocean floor and adversely affecting divers’ visibility).
We enjoyed a very smooth transfer to a bus to San Pedro Sula, from where we catch the TICA bus for Managua tomorrow. We even managed to catch a drink with Richard, a guy traveling in his own since January with no plans to stop. He mentioned 3 years but we think he is not swearing by it just yet!
We exchanged a number of good hints on ‘do’s and don’ts’ - we’re traveling similar routes but in opposite directions - that we are extremely grateful for and are looking forward to exploring.
A highlight of the evening was in the restaurant we visited for an evening drink. There was a male reading group of about 30 people, pretty much taking over the conversation levels whilst discussing this week’s book. Several of the group looked severely disinterested. Conclusion: juvenile delinquents who’ve opted for punishment by boredom rather than a tougher custodial sentence!
With regards to human faith, you may remember we mentioned Matt, who traveled the same journey from Dangriga to Utila with us. Well, on the island he achieved his PADI Open Water qualification but then (unrelatedly we think) lost one of his credit cards (the one that worked in the island’s only - and fussy - ATM). In the end he let us help him out by buying his bus ticket - with the proviso that he would pay it back (the only way we could get him to take our help). Later that evening our hotel receptionist handed us an envelope with the money returned, plus a little extra for a thank you drink and a nice note.
So morally we now have a credit, should any similarly bad luck befall us.
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