Friday, March 2, 2012

2012 - Year of the Dragon

It's March and this is my first blog of 2012.  I have really been lax in keeping current and, as a matter of fact, am considering stopping my blog all together.  There are several reasons for this but the main one is that after 5 years there is not much new to write about regarding living here on an island that is going no where.  It's not all bad, I've just run out of topics without sounding repetitive.  So far we don't have the road everyone wants to build which would be a total negative for this island for many, many reasons.  We have fewer tourists because of the political climate on the mainland (which really doesn't affect us at all), the rise in crime on the mainland (which, again is not a problem for us) and drugs.

I still love my home and love the peace and solitude that island living, especially on an island without roads, gives us.  But I've blogged about building our home, learning to drive and cope with driving a boat, the constant bug problem, the mañana theory which is a permanent fixture in the Caribbean, the crime, the fires, the weather, the diving, the food (or lack thereof), the people, my pets and sometimes my craft work.  Oh, there are many more topics I've touched on but I've pretty much given all the information I can about the island and our life here.

I must admit also that I've become disenchanted many things in Honduras: the lack of law enforcement, the lack of structure in construction (mainly the lack of enforceable laws), the lack of interest in the people to make their lives better, the lack of commitment to a business looking to serve its customers, the appearance of drugs on the island and the never ending petty theft and small crimes that everyone turns a blind eye to, etc., etc., etc.  

I am tired o hearing people quote all the statistics which show Honduras as being one of the top countries with uncontrollable crime and of the hollow words that are issued by those in government trying to convince people that, no, it is not so.  I'm tired of people going to jail after committing a major crime and/or murder and find that 2 years later someone has provided enough money to "bail" them out of jail and they are set free.  Supposedly in this country this cannot happen but it does and I know of an incident on the island.  

I'm tired of the fact that our leaders on the island claim they can't keep anyone in jail for more than 24 hours - with no rational explanation for this "law".  I'm tired of people thinking I'm stupid and they try to pull all sorts of asinine tricks in order to get my money.  

I'm tired of arguing with people in the bank who, in spite of the fact that they work with "math" can't even figure out that if you have 3 lines of people (one of which is designated for elderly, pregnant and handicapped people) and 3 tellers that the twenty people in line for the two tellers have to be helped by the person with the "elderly" line of 8 people by sending their customers over to that line, thus increasing the "elderly" line to 16 people and reducing the other two lines to 6 people all in the name of "helping the tellers" out.  This is done by sending one customer at a time from the other two lines to the third line and staggering it after every other customer.  What this ultimately does is make the people in the "privileged" line wait 3 times as long as the other two lines and all is justified because these people are given chairs to sit in!  I guess the handicapped, pregnant and elderly don't have anything better to do with their time but to wait in a longer line at the bank because they have a chair!  Ridiculous and you can't make them see the stupidity of this action.

I have mentioned to a few people, mainly tourists who have come to the island and read my blog, that I'm thinking of stopping it.  They were dismayed and said the only reason they were here on the island was because of my blog.  This is a nice compliment and I thank them, but I'm fresh out of things to tell people.  Oh, I guess I could change my blog and talk about my crafts, but I doubt anyone would be interested and what is the point of publishing something like that when no one will read it?

So, I may or may not blog any more this year.  I can report that this year has not been a good one so far.  My Step-Daughter died of cancer on Feb. 21st just a month after celebrating her 46th birthday.  My husband fell in the boat and injured his back.  And we have a new invasion of termites around our house.  The computers have been acting up and if you follow my blog at all you will know what a pain it is to get them serviced.  The phone service is on again, off again and thankfully I have solar power for electricity as the electric company here leaves a lot to be desired besides being the most expense electric company in all of Honduras.  We had to buy a new motor for our boat and while waiting had our boat re-fiberglassed and painted - a complete disaster.  Terrible job and the painting will have to be re-done, hopefully this month.  Also, we are re-painting our house and the whole upstairs front porch has to be re-done.  I've waited more than a year for this to be repaired but something always comes up and so it is pushed to the bottom of the list.

I can say we had the pleasure of some lovely visitors from Germany who came here to celebrate Annette's 50th birthday.  A big birthday bash was held at Manati and the visitors, who happened to be part of the band that Claus once played with in Germany as a young man, put on a wonderful show for us.  It was fantastic to have live music once more and we all thank them for making the trip and entertaining us.  Oh, Happy Birthday Annette for the 50th time!  HA.

Of course, I'm sure this blog is sounding a little negative and I don't like ending it on that note.  It really is not bad living on the island most of the time.  As in any place one resides, there will always be irritants that just drive one up the wall at times.  Overall, life here is relaxing and peaceful.  I now have a Yoga class to attend (which I love), I have projects to keep me busy until 2050 and I will be attending my Grandson's wedding this June in the U.S.  I still enjoy cooking and must say I've made more yummy things living here than all my life of cooking in the States in spite of the limitations on the availability of food.

I have friends here who are loyal and kind and, in general, the population of the island are a very friendly group of people.  

So, this may or may not be a final blog and quite possibly, one day, something unique will happen and I'll just have to get it on my site!  Until then, it has been great and I hope everyone has enjoyed reading my ramblings.

Oh, to all those people who have written me and asked me to assist them with planning their visit to the island, you can always leave a comment on my blog which comes to my e-mail and I can still help you out as it won't be shut down completely.


  1. I really enjoy reading your blog. I even appreciate hearing of the problems involved with "Living in paradise" because although I'm sure some would regard it as such, there are going to be challenges regardless. It's not about where you live, it's just about life.

    I watched a program on PBS the other night about the Amish and their attempt to shield themselves from the world by living isolated the way that they do. I thought it was commendable that at some point they give kids the chance to decide if they want to stay and dedicate themselves to God and that way of life, or leave and go out into the world. The sad part however was that if they chose to go out into the world, the family cuts off all communication and shuns the child. I have a hard time thinking God wants us to break our family bonds because our children don't agree with our traditions. Breaking traditions is what allows us to progress.
    By deciding to go and make a life in a place like Honduras you broke traditions. I'm sure some people thought you were (are) nuts for making the move. I'm also sure that you knew going into it that there were going to be new and unique challenges. Those challenges that you write about are what I (we) like reading about. If you decide to stop writing about it, it's entirely up to you. But I would miss it. I'm still trying to figure out how I can get back to island life myself...

    Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.


  2. Thank you for your thoughts. And, yes, people thought we were nuts to go to live in a third-world country and give up all the luxuries. We have not missed those things at all and the exchange of quiet and calmness in our lives (overall) is great.

    I had a bad day when writing this blog but have been thinking about discontinuing the blog as I don't feel there is anything more to tell people except an occasional insight into where my life is going. That would not prove overly interesting for some. I think the humor of some things would provide entertainment but I doubt that what I have to say would open people's eyes to what really goes on here in the way of everyday struggles, which is not even the best word to use.

    Nevertheless, I will possibly blog every now and then but with more infrequency. As my readers drop off I'll probably quit altogether.
    I have had a great time doing this. I enjoyed letting people know what it is to live "without" and to show that it is not that bad of a struggle!
    Thanks again.

  3. Hi Sharon,

    I just found your blog. Thank you for the time you spent posting. I was trying to get some real life insight into life on Guanaja. Writing has always been a great outlet for me whether anyone is reading it or not. If you like to write...write all your heart desires and know that from time to time, at the very least, someone will come along and take a great interest in your ramblings! I live in Siesta Key, Florida :-)

  4. Hi Sharon, I just came across your blog again. Sorry, you must of had a bad day. I do hope you continue your ” ramblings”, I enjoy it very much. I like your writing style and when I read it takes me back to Guanaja. I do miss the island and the people so very much. I lived there at Mile High the year Mitch paid his visit. Please continue to put your thoughts in your blog. If anything carry around a cheap digital camera out cell phone camera to take random photos of the island, your views from home, people,plants, animals, etc.and post them on your blog. Some of us that decided to leave paradise(despite its problems) to come back to ” civilization”would appreciate it. Take care and say hello to my friends. Just so you know, you're not missing much up here.

  5. Hi Sharon,
    I have been reading your blog over time with great interest because I have been planning to retire in an island and design a different live style from living & working in the US. It appears that Guanaja like most other locations have some positives and negatives to pounder for parties looking to relocate there. Unfortunately the political, social economic situation of the country is a disaster that may never get resolved. The most troubling aspect is the reports of crime, violence, murders and the fact that local police and the justice system is nonexistent which fuels further unrest and more of the same. It’s a shame that paradise is an onion of many layers of complexities and issues to live with. I would say keep writing and express your ideas that may create a movement to make better changes in the island, you never know..