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Gracias, not ¨thank you¨, but the city

overcast -17 °C

So, I´ll start with our long day of travel where Thalita left off. We caught a bus from La Ceiba to San Pedro Sula that lasted just over 3 hours, but was fairly comfortable, especially compared to the boat ride we´d just experienced. We got to the main bus terminal in San Pedro, and got out the Lonely Planet guide. From the map and info in the book, it looked like we´d have to bus it to Santa Rosa de Copan for 2.5 hours and then bus it to the small town of Gracias (our destination) another 1.5 hours or so. But as we stand there just off the previous bus looking through our guide, a bus pulls up with Gracias plastered on the front, and we jumped and hugged and danced. Alright, no we didn´t, but we were excited, because rarely do things happen in Central America that work out completely to our advantage. That was sweet. We took a pee break (I love thinking of what my mom thinks when she just read that I used the term pee break), and then headed to the bus to wait by it til it left at 2pm. We left and made the gorgeous ride to Gracias, feeling the temperature drop little by little as we climbed into more mountains. Marvelous.

We pulled into the bus station, if you could call it that, at about 6pm. We walked up the steep hill, the same as I did with Coody and Parsons earlier in the year, to a great little hotel called Guancascos. We checked in, dropped the bags, and got something to eat at their ajoining restaurant. We went to a grocery after that, got some water, and some cheetos (They have puffy cheetos that are small like the crunchy ones, so sweet), and went back to enjoy some hotel TV, something we hadn´t enjoyed in a few weeks. Again, marvelous.

The next day, we woke up with aspirations of walking around the city to ¨take it all in¨. So after some breakfast, we headed to the room to shower and get ready, and then it came.... All I will say is that Montezuma is a sneaky punk. He exacted his revenge on me a good 9 or 10 times that morning, which changed our plans around a bit. I spent the rest of the day laying in bed weak and dizzy, drinking as much water as I could (thanks Elizabeth for the propel packets).

So next day, after some rehydration therapy and Cipro started, I felt much better. So we walked around the city for a few hours. We first headed up the hill to Castillo San Cristobal, a small fort atop Gracias. This is me in a lookout post at the castillo.

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It was very cool and we could see The Celaque National Park, where I had hiked with Parsons and Coody earlier in the year, and where Thalita and I planned to hike the next day. After that we walked around to find the three main churches in town, San Marcos, Las Mercedes, and San Sebastian. We got to San Sebastian last, where we found this massive tree, and Thalita said take a photo of me while I climb it. This photo is after her daring descent from the top of the tree. She´s so hardcore.

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The next morning we woke up to go hiking, and it was starting to rain and the clouds stretched forever. So we decided to just go on to Tegucigalpa. That was even more of an experience than last time I did that route. We took a minibus from Gracias to San Juan for about 1.5 hours through the rain and mud. We fish tailed so much I thought we were going to flip. We arrived at San Juan and we went to wait at a little comedor with about 12 other local folks to try to get a ride on a pickup to the next city La Esperanza. Coody, Parsons, and I had done this also previously, so I didn´t think it would be tough. We waited for about 45 minutes, and nobody picked anyone up. Finally a few of us walked over to this guy´s minibus and asked if he would take us, since we could guarantee him a full minibus. He denied our request with a laugh, and we walked back to wait some more. Then about 30 minutes later, he drove over, opened his doors and said ¨lets rock and roll.¨ No he didn´t, but he did give us all a ride. It was a long 2 hours down mostly mud roads with about 14 of us in this van a few feet longer than a Dodge Caravan. Thalita got the unluckey spot sitting backwards, hunched over, between the driver and front passenger seat. Needless to say, she was not a happy camper.

We did make in to La Esperanza in one piece, hopped on the last bus available to Tegucigalpa, and spent 4 hours nodding off, and complaining about being hungry. Oh and another thanks to Elizabeth, we chowed down on that jerky this day, you are a life saver.

So we´re in Tegucigalpa now, staying at the awesome Hotel Guadaloupe 2, love that place. We are at the mall today having an ¨American day¨, watching a movie and getting a bite to eat. Thalita found this awesome restaurant called go green that deals exclusively in the art of salad making, if that is in fact an art, so she is now a happy camper. We leave tomorrow for Managua, Nicaragua on another long bus. Until then.

Posted by ajthalita 15:06 Archived in Honduras Tagged hitchhiking

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