I spent a total of six weeks in Honduras this summer. My Spanish improved noticeably and I received my first and only complement on it by a Honduran national. Then again, I only think he was complementing me. I find it harder to understand than to mistakenly imagine I'm being understood.
I got tiger-stripe tan lines on my feet from wearing my Keens and working outdoors. I even developed a little heat tolerance and have been able to endure the Texas heat much better since I returned (it's been 105 regularly whereas it was a cool 95 in Honduras). I used to think that the idea of building up a tolerance to heat was a myth perpetrated by people who wanted to make me feel bad for using air conditioning. Well, maybe it is, but I have become a believer in the myth and in doing so received the unexpected benefit of being OK with the heat. Of course, I lost about 30 pounds too, so that may have something to do with feeling cooler.
Here are some miscellaneous images from my time in Honduras. None of them, by themselves, is adequate visual anchoring for a blog post of their own but together they weave a mismatched tapestry reminiscent of an engineer trying to dress himself...
[This is the biggest black plastic tank I could find. They are made for drinking water storage, but we use them for other projects too. Our biodigester uses a 1,700 liter tank, but this Mother Ship is a 22,000 liter tank. "Maybe I could use it one day," he says to himself with a dreamy tone of voice. I like this picture because it makes me look thinner by comparison.]
[I took this picture while I was waiting for the students to complete their white water rafting experience. I was laying in a shady hammock on the banks of the Congreal river when I took it. The shoes are the Keens I mentioned from which I got my tiger stripes.]
[This is a toucan that lives at the Jungle River lodge and, apparently, likes lemonade.]
[I made a deal with one of my students: if I would go out into the (presumably) snake-infested gully to retrieve his misthrown Frisbee, then he would make my peanut butter sandwich. It turned out to have been a good deal, although I suspect I would have a different opinion if I would have had to use the machete in my hand to defend myself against like, a cobra or something.]
[We bought a dump truck load of rocks to form the base of our solar hot water heater. It was kinda cool when they were delivered.]
[This is just about the last picture I took. It's the sunset from Sambo Creek on the north coast of Honduras.]