Grabbing my luggage, I left the terminal in search of a cab to take me into the city where I was to catch a bus to La Ceiba. I suppose I expected a sign saying "Taxis" but I saw nothing to give me a clue. A car came and I mistakenly assumed it was a cab. Later I realized they could have been kidnappers. Fortunately, they were simply a couple of nice guys who gave me a lift into the city.
Dropping me off at the bus depot, I climbed into a bus marked "La Ceiba." However, it wasn't the air conditioned non-stop bus I expected but a local bus crowded and hot. I decided to relax and enjoy the local color. At least, I was headed toward La Ceiba.
When we arrived, the bus driver told me he didn't have my luggage. In the midst of my disbelief and anxiety, a young passenger came to my aid. He climbed into the underbelly of the bus and came out triumphantly with my luggage. Relieved and overjoyed, I showered him with "Gracias"es.
Eventually I checked in with the Montoya family with whom I was staying for three weeks. I had a small room in back with a very small fan. I remember holding my hand over the bed and feeling the heat rise.
The family had had two sons, Daniel and David. Sadly they had lost Daniel to gang violence a few years before. Since I had also lost a son, Daniel, I felt a bond with the family and could share with them their grief.
The Montoya family was very religious. Each Wednesday evening they hosted a prayer service for their neighbors and members of their parish. I remember their church as being very simple and quite beautiful.
Our language school had an outing and I invited David along. He was a very quiet, gentle person. Although we have lost touch, I have prayed that he has stayed safe in a dangerous world.
When the three weeks were over and it was time to leave, I felt a great sense of sadness. I had grown to love not only the Montoya family but the people of Honduras.
Recently when I learned of the Emergency Interfaith Delegation to Honduras, I knew I wanted to return and be of whatever help I could be. I am looking forward to the coming week.