I have seen a great deal of the western side of Honduras. I’ve been to Inbtibuca, Comayagua, La Esperanza, Copán Runias, Yojoa, Trinidad, La Ceiba, Puerto Cortes, Omoa and Tela. One place I haven’t traveled to is Santa Barbara. We made it partially there a couple of weekends ago, but couldn’t quite make it all the way due to our departure time that day.
We made it as far as Trinidad, a colonial town, approximately 55 kilometers north of Santa Barbara. (Click here for a slideshow of Trinidad)
The road to Santa Barbara is like many of the others — full of twists and turns through the beautiful mountains, but what cropped up on this trip surprised me — potholes — lots and lots of potholes. I suspect all the rain we had a couple of months ago contributed to pitted roads and it’s not worth taking photos of the beasts, but suffice it to say that in order to keep a nice new vehicle in good shape, our drivers feel the need to avoid each one so it feels like car is skating across the road. I was thinking ahead and took a dose of Dramamine as we headed out which was a good move, but one didn’t do the trick. Once we “landed” in Santa Barbara, I sat for a while to get myself straightened out and once I found water I took another pill knowing the ride back was going to be just as bad. It was a two-dramamine trip; first time this has happened.
I feel like I have more photos of churches since moving to Honduras than I have taken in my entire life. Everywhere I go they are similar, yet different; each has its own character. Most have the flat façade design, but some have the Moorish style dome and others have the more familiar angular steeples on top of the building, but most all are light in paint — white, sometimes yellow as seen on top of this Santa Barbara church.
The town of Santa Barbara is like the others. A central park, shops and a few restaurants and people out and about on a weekend afternoon.
We’re out, far from many of the conveniences of life, at least the conveniences Honduras has to offer and I always wonder what the people that live in these towns and villages do for work — to survive, and then I realize that is a very American thing to think. Who says there isn’t a lot for people to do? Just because there are no 4 lange highways and busses, taxis and modern buildings with malls and fancy office buildings around doesn’t mean there is nothing for people to do.
I set off down random streets looking for interesting people and photos. My creative skills weren’t quite on par after the ride, but I liked seeing a new town and everyone had smiles for us as this strange, obviously not Honduran woman with a big DSLR and meager Spanish skills walked around — like a tourist — with a couple of body attempting to follow in stealth mode.
When I spotted this building, I had to get up close. I’m sure they didn’t know what to make of it, but I persisted while cars drove by the narrow street, wondering why anyone would take a photo of a peeling building. I was told this is the original way of building in Honduras. It was not unfamiliar. I’d seen architecture like this in other places, but it was interesting to get this close and see the way the mud was held together to form the side of a building and made me wonder how something like this holds up for centuries.
And then there are the bird’s nests of telephone wires that make me wonder how any calls get to the person they are intended to go, but somehow seem to make it.
When we met this Doctor, he was very proud to tell us his ancestry is European and wanted me to look at his skin and eyes, telling me he is “not dark, he is white,” and that I can tell he is of European breeding because of his blue eyes and how common it is in his town of Llama, just north of Santa Barbara where I shot these photos of a church in disrepair due to a strong earthquake in 2009.
This church sustained critical damage during the earthquake. The church is stil closed and there does not appear to be anything happening to restore it to safety anda its former use.
Meanwhile, back at the church in Santa Barbara, these two chicos were doing all they could to get in the pictures. They’re sweet and charming and big flirts and all that, but in the end, when we handed them a few Lempira, they quickly shoved the money into a pink backpack that was hanging on the other side of the fence. We fell for it, but you’ve got to admit, they’re cute.
Like all the other markets I’ve been to, there are mangoes and cantaloupe and citrus fruit and more. Again, I could have stood there all afternoon waiting for photo ops, but there were places to go and more Dramamine to take so I could make it back to the city.
And then it was time to head back on the winding, pot holed roads to the big city. There is one other town in this side of the country I’d like to get to. It’s called Gracias and from what I’ve heard and seen online, I don’t want to miss it.
I’m just hoping the road is better!