London – New York - San Pedro Sula, Honduras (Part 3)
I can’t believe how smoothly the journey has gone so far. The connection between Gatwick and Heathrow went like a dream. I’ve missed flights in the past because of that apparently simple link, but today the coffee gods are with me. At Heathrow once again the flight was on time and left ahead of schedule. The “toothpastegate” issue at Jersey airport turned out to be a minor skirmish!
Now for the endurance test, 8 hours pinned in a seat isn’t my favourite preoccupation but for some reason, the food and a little rest all helped to speed things along and before long I arrived at JFK airport, New York. Hell, even the Homeland security agent nearly cracked a smile.
I’d missed the breakfast offer on the long haul and was in need of a food top up ahead of my connecting flight at 01.45 to Honduras. By the time I’d got to JFK things appeared to be winding down, many of the stores had closed for the night so the choice it transpired was McDonalds or nothing. I know this will sound very snobbish but the only times I’ve ever visited a McDonalds has been when I’ve been in a similar predicament. Reluctantly I ordered a “Big Mac” and fries washed down with a coffee.
They are a super-efficient company however the level of packaging waste they produce is criminal, I’m surrounded by bins crammed with the detritus of happy meals.
The thing that struck me about JFK is how functional everything is and in that way how very American. The objective of getting masses of people from A to B is done with scary efficiency but with little regard to aesthetics. The other thing you notice is that the majority of workers are Hispanic. It made me wonder what would happen if Donald Trump did get his wall built along the Mexican border who would ensure the smooth running of this Airport?
After a few hours, it was time to board my final flight, I’m not sure what was going on but the waiting area was like wheelchair city. However once again all these people were loaded and the flight from New York to San Pedro Sula got away on schedule and by 05.30 I had arrived in Honduras.
For the first time, you could feel that you were in a different part of the world, the heat and humidity drop on you like a heavy blanket.
Having successfully cleared customs and given up my fingerprints I came out into the arrivals hall. An individual who turned out to be Christian held up a sign with my name on it, his friend offered to help with the luggage. Although I was expecting to be collected there’s still something a little unnerving when you’re taken out into the poorly lit carpark and pointed in the direction of a blacked-out car from which a third person suddenly appears. In different circumstances, I’m sure many a person has met a grisly end but then again I’ve probably seen too many movies!
The road trip is a little complicated we have to drop off Christian and his friend Didier and then pick up a girl Yoly who turns out to be Didier's sister. Don’t worry, her Dad was in the back of the car.
The English is pretty limited but I did notice that Yoly, who was now our driver crossed herself prior to setting off, she clearly knows something about what lies ahead that I don’t! A 4-hour journey by road lies ahead before I reach my final destination, Hotel Colonial in Coban.