Cornered in Honduras


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Published: April 26th 2011
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My stay at Casa Kiwi was a memorable one. I thought that this must be the end of the line or that it should be if it wasn't. After due consideration of the fact that there are no good routes east or south, which meant that I would have to go back the way I came, I got to thinking that mabe it was time to turn this ship around and sail for home. My fellow travelers advised that I should chill for a couple of days and count my marbles before making any decisions so that I did for better or for worse.

The Casa Kiwi is a hard-drinking place on the edge of civilization where the expat owner and staff work both sides of the bar because there isn't much else to do in this relatively isolated spot about 5 miles from town. It seemed, at times, that there were more staff than guests because the staff were omnipresent whether they were working or not. This atmosphere is infectious. The bar never closed that first night. Hazel started drinking right away and she was still drinking at 8:30 the next morning when I got up. I had a few. The sad fact that I don't know what or how many should be cause for concern except that I was the most sober person present when it happened.

I was not the only camper at Casa Kiwi. Three intrepid cyclists, Anna, Kurt, and Kelly were already camped here when I arrived. They, like Marco and Hazel, were earnestly preparing to enter La Moskita with no definite plan as to how they would make it through to Nicaragua.

It was about 9 or 10 PM when Kurt came into the bar to tell us that Kelly had just been robbed at knifepoint by a couple of kids. Kelly was okay but they got all of her important stuff including her money, passport, computer, and camera. It happend just 1 kilometer down the road so he asked if we might form up a posse to see if we could confront the thieves and maybe get her stuff back. This we did promptly and without hesitation because nobody had the good sense to question whether or not this was a good idea. Alcohol may have been a factor. Thus engaged, the drunken posse set out forthwith from the bar armed with a single machete to be shared by a multi-national force which included a couple of Brits, a French-Canadian, an Australian, and a few Americans. It was at about this time that I decided to muster the Scion to the service of this glorious mission. I think I took on 4 passengers which would seem to be impossible because I'm pretty sure that the back seat was full of stuff. The victim, Kelly, was among my passengers until we reached the road where she decided to bail and run toward the scene of the crime. I don't quite get why she did this but it may be that anything was welcome relief from being crammed into a tiny car with a bunch of drunken idiots. We drove out the road a ways and then we drove back hoping to see some sign of the criminals or Kelly's stuff but alas it was not to be and so ended this stupid and futile gesture.

In the days after this bizarre event, Kelly decided for personal reasons unrelated to the theft that it was time to go home. Kurt would go with her to Tegucigalpa to assist in getting a new passport and see her to the plane. He left his bike so that he could return to continue his journey through Central America but he would not be going into La Moskita. Anna would go it alone. I ultimately decided that my journey must likewise continue. I shall try to explain why but I can't promise that my reasoning is that of a sane person. If it ever happens that you find yourself driving your car down a dark road in Honduras with a bunch of drunks from the four corners of the earth, armed with a machete and looking for thieves, you will expeience an epiphany or two. The first will be a realization that you must have made more than your fair share of interesting life choices. The second will be certain knowledge that events have spiraled so far out of control that it is beyond your poor powers to affect your destiny. The die is cast. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen. It is my charge to carry on until the marbles are all gone.

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