|It never ceases to amaze me just how many Canadian and American people live down here in the Bay Islands. We popped into Hole in the Wall one afternoon this week and met another such family, a fairly young couple with one daughter, around 12 years of age.
Currently living in California 10 months of the year and down here for two months, they own property and did for many years live here full time. We were all laughing and telling stories about the bizarre things that happen down here and the woman said that back in home, in California when something strange happens, they say, "that's just so Honduran".
I had a very "Honduran" experience the week before last when I was shopping in Coxen's Hole one day. I stopped in at my favorite little lunch place and was paying for my shrimp, mashed potatoes and vegetables when I spied a single Lipton Ice tea in the refrigerator.
I had walked a long way in the heat and was parched so I quickly snatched up the last cold ice tea from the fridge, paid for my meal and sat down at the table closest to the cash register. I opened the ice tea and took a long, thirsty haul from it.
"YUCK", I blurted out loud. "That is the WORST ice tea I've ever tasted, I think it's gone bad", I said to the girl at the cash register.
"That's not ice tea," she replied, "that's why I didn't charge you for it". "What is it?", I asked, wondering if I just swallowed some type of cleanser, which is what it tasted like. "It's her medicine", she said, pointing back towards the kitchen and laughing so hard her belly shook. By now everyone in the restaurant was listening to the exchange, chuckling, but not shocked because it is just so typically 'honduran'.
"It won't hurt you", she assured me "and I DIDN'T charge you for it". That was her main concern through the entire exchange. "Well could you PLEASE go back and ask her just what it is?" I asked pleasantly, "or send her out". She sauntered back into the kitchen and a few minutes later returned "It will make you feel good", she said, "it's to PURGE you".
"Well it's not going to PURGE me on my long taxi ride home or anything is it?", I asked, having visions of yelling "BAJA" halfway home and having a carload of people wait while I dashed into the jungle to be "purged".
"Oh no dear, nothing like that" she chuckled, as did the rest of the patrons. "Would you like something else to drink? The tamarind juice is very good", she said.
So I sat back down with my cold tamarind juice and continued eating my fresh shrimp. A minute later I looked up as a blonde woman, whom I assumed was from the visiting cruise ship, because blondes are few and far between here, reached into the fridge and snatched up the very same bottle of ice tea."
"I wouldn't drink that if I was you", I said to the woman. "It's not ice tea, it's somebody's medicine.".
She thanked me and returned the ice tea to the fridge without so much as batting an eye. We got chatting as you do down here in these friendly parts and I found out she used to live here and was therefore not surprised when something 'honduran' happened.