Well, after almost three days of traveling from Vietnam to Honduras, I am in my new apartment. It's more like a hotel room converted into an apartment, but it's alright because there is an amazing pool!
As I was leaving Tokyo a woman from American Airlines told me I couldn't board the plane in Miami without a return ticket home! I started panicking because I wouldn't be able to book it until I got to Dallas, and also, I thought the maximum amount of time I could stay in Honduras was 30 days.
After a few emails back and forth to my boss, she told me I had 90 days in the country and it was OK to book my flight back home on Dec. 20. Phew. Then, when I got to Miami, nobody checked my return ticket! Agh! At least I booked a ticket I would actually use and not just a phoney one for immigration purposes.
Anyway, my mom and dad got me a room at the Miami airport hotel for my birthday and it was perfect because I was in no shape to sleep in the airport. I had a nice shower and soft bed, it was great.
Funny story. In the hotel restaurant in the morning a woman sitting nearby said:
"Wasn't that fire alarm crazy last night?"
"Uhm… what fire alarm?"
"Oh my god, they evacuated the whole building at 2:30 in the morning!"
"I did not hear that."
She bursted out laughing and said "Well that is shocking, they should have checked on you."
"It sure is. Wow."
That's how tired I was, I slept through an airport fire alarm, which must have been pretty loud.
I boarded the plane in Miami just fine with no questions about return tickets from American Airlines (ugh!). After some of the most insane turbulence of my life, I was so happy to get off the airplane in San Pedro Sula. The baggage claim and immigration areas were jam packed full. Two flights had arrived at the same time and turned the airport into chaos. We were corralled into something resembling lines and I joked around with some cardboard box salesmen the whole time. Seriously, that's what they were. Anyway, customs took forever and I felt bad for the people who were waiting for me from the school. My boss' brother Danny picked me up with his wife who bought me lunch at Applebee's afterwards where I had a ginormous hamburger. Something I have been desperately missing for months in Asia.
They drove me out to Santa Rosa, which took about three hours and we were stopped about four times by the police. Every time, Danny showed his registration and was waved on through. I guess he has a trustworthy face.
Santa Rosa is built on top of a big jungly mountain, and there are cobblestone streets in the historic part of town. This is where I live in a hotel that has been converted into apartments for us. We get to use this awesome pool in the centre courtyard. The privacy in my room is not too great, because the windows in my bedroom literally look out onto the shared hallway, but I guess I can suffer with it until June.
Bedroom, see the crazy window???
Bathroom, separate toilet!! Yes!!!