Recently in Honduras Category

Up early – and on the bikes by 7 – meat on the seat as Huli says…

Rode arond a couple small towns looking for a cash machine. Finally found one and got some US cash – El Salvador uses the US Dollar as its currency which is handy.

IMG_0572As we were riding up to to the border at about 50mph these dudes come running into the street. I’m telling you they ran right in front of us and we had to slow and move left to avoid taking one out. They are waving and screaming. After we pass they jump into they’re tuck and give chase. About a half mile later we stop at the border area and the fixers were on us like a pack of jackals on a wounded wildebeast – we tried to avoid them and ignore them but they kept working us hard. one of them knew our names – Raul from the last border had called them - etc.. eventually i gave into this guy and he started working us hard.

exiting el salvador was easy – a little bit of review of the bike documents and a few bucks – poof, we were gone.

P1000594honduras was a whole different story – unfortunately we arrived at the honduran border at about lunch time – and of course everything stops. so we waited and waited and waited….

then we needed about 8,000 copies of the titles, the drivers license, the passport, the exit permit from guatemala, John’s last blood test results, etc.

then the fleecing began – all nicely documented of course – 135 lempira ($7) for this, 135 for that, 257 (about $14) for something else, then 432 ($23) for another permit – and so it goes. 

P1000592So we waited… hours we waited in the hot sun while the 17 different departments had to process whatever they needed to process….The only entertainment was this little kid running around. He was eating some chicken and when he got to the bone he would throw the bone down to the many little scrawny dogs begging. Well he finished one piece and comes walking over to John and flings the bone right on my lap…. Then gives me the strange look, like aren’t you gonna eat it???

by the time we were finished it had taking a little over 3 hours – which is not too bad we find out – and maybe about $100 per person/bike. This is way too much – and Dan was pretty peeved about being fleeced – he later figured out how they had done it and what to avoid next time. The fixers work hand in hand with the officials – and if you let them – they will hide certain things from you – while the delays are taking place certain officials are pushing the paperwork thru various people to make sure they get to the right officials who are on the take – then the reciepts are produced and demands made. If you’re not  savvy about the true costs you can’t really argue with them.

We tore across Hon-dur-ass like a plate of bad huevos rancheros thru a gringo, Not much was said on the intercom and we decided they were not going to get another cent from us – no gas purchased, no water, not one thing. A shame really – i’ve been to the place a dozen times or more and have usually enjoyed the people and the sights.

We got to the border of Honduras and Nicaragua about 4:30pm – a little late but we were pushing it to get out of Hondurasssss.

Just before the border – we were stopped by some Honduran cops. I thought “Oh, great, they didn’t get a big enough piece of my ass” – and the fixers decended upon us at the cop stop…. “documento’s!”  – off the bike, dig out the paperwork – all the while the fixers are yelling at us – the cop asks me to open a side bag – and starts poking thru it – then he chases all the fixers away – just waves his arms and chases them off – then he gets real close to me and starts explaining in very slow spanish – “you will only pay $3 to exit honduras and then $7 each person and $12 each moto to enter nicaragua” – and he made me repeat it back to him – “don’t pay any more” – he was a very nice guy and we had the info we needed to avoid being hosed by another fixer. We shook his hand and in one instant most of the bad feelings about Hunduras were erased.

We motored up to the border – only about 1/4 mile from the cops – I ignored the fixers completely telling them “No” – about 700 times – one of them stuck with me and wanted to translate etc… I ignored him for the most part – and walked my papers here and there – get copies etc.. it was fairly quick except for the line to get the moto permits…. and we entered Nicaragua for a total of $19 each person/bike.

It was dark by the time we were done at the border but we only had 11 KM’s to get to Somotillo so we thought no worries we’ll bust out 6 miles and Cervezas all round– Then we find out the road was CRAP!! — torn to pieces and under construction (probably for the last 20 years) – huge potholes, rocks, sections of pavement, then dirt, then gravel – just crap. To top it off – there were tons of unlighted vehicles on the road – and big trucks bolting towards the border with huge plumes of dust hanging in the air behind them. It took us about 30 to 45 minutes to go the 6 miles.

P1000596We ended up at the only hotel in town – $20 – and it looked ok and $20 seemed reasonable. They let us pull the bikes inside behind the locked gate. The room was a surprise – two single beds – one blocking the sink and the toilet/shower were behind a little curtain. The room was small – and to top it all off, there was NO water in the entire hotel. No shower, no wash up, no water for the toilet. If you used the toilet they had a big garbage can of water that you scooped some up and into the toilet bowl to make it flush. Excellent – after a long day of sweating to the oldies in riding gear/boots at two borders and riding thru mountains of dust we both had a nice little caked dried brown gravy look and feel. This picture is of the shower from above … lovely.

We walked across the street for dinner of chicken and veg and it was pretty good– and while waiting for it to cook some guy comes in with his rooster. He ties it to the leg of his chair and starts drinking with his buddies. We of course are looking at it and cracking jokes about his c*ck being tied to the chair.  laughing and carrying on. He then yells at us in spanish. We’re thinking uh oh.. The gal behind the bar spoke broken english and say’s “he want’s to sell you his Gallo.” We decided we did not have the room in the saddle bags and said no thanks. He was persistent and the price went from 50 cordobas ($2.5 US) down to 30 pretty quickly… Dan asked the gal behind the bar if that chicken was the one we would be eating for dinner?? We managed to avoid buying it even though it was a good deal.

How many times have you been in a bar and some dude wants to sell you a rooster??? (“c*ck”)

We both awoke many times that night by a rooster crowing very loudly at 3am… and he was persistent up till 5 am. We joked that the dude tied the damn thing up next to our room becuase we didn’t buy it.  Then the incredibly loud bus horns started blasting and competing for riders at 5am so we dicided we might as well get up, not take a shower, not use the toilet and not use the sink. It was time for the Motobrothers to ride – meat on the seat. 

And in the rain department… not even a hint of rain – nearly a month of riding almost every day without putting on the rain gear…. amazing!