Steve and Matthew
Back to Honduras!
June 28th through July 6th
Let us know that you're along for
the ride... All of our "usual" email addresses will
work (well, except for ones ending in balloonideas.com -- we
refuse to check our work email!) We'll try to answer your questions
between snorkels, trips to the Mayan Ruins of Copan, coconut
shrimp and lots o' lobster!
Internet and Electric Power can be
"spotty" on Roatan, so if we don't communicate or
update the site too often...stick with us! We'll update the
site as often as we're able!
Our photos will be available in daily
"Photo Albums" shown below. Check 'em all out...that
is, if we can upload them!
We'll try to update our Roatan Blog
with random thoughts, experiences, dining delicacies, snorkeling
sights, etc. daily, as well!
Why in the world did we choose Roatan?
It chose us...we're coming back to visit our friend, Victor
More info on him, and our friendship here.
Where in the world is Roatan? Click
Here for a map!
We're staying at the Mayan
Princess Resort in West Bay, Roatan, Honduras, Central America,
etc. Also, we'll be visiting the Honduran Mainland for the first
time...with a couple of days in La Ceiba and a trip to the Mayan
Ruins in Copan.
Click on the images shown on our
site for a "Close-Up" view!
So, How's the Weather?? Click
Here for Tropical Satellite Loop
(Honduras is the country located almost due south of Alabama in
the center of the box bordered by Longitudes 90 and 80 and Latitudes
10 and 20. The island of Roatan is the small island just north
of the mainland of Honduras.)
Tracking Information on our Flight to Roatan can be obtained by
clicking on the small arrow in the info-box to the right!
A direct link for the "Live-View" map of our flight to
Houston (will show up once we take off from San Antonio): Click
So far, we've really loved the treatment at the Continental President's
Clubs...in both San Antonio and Houston. Who knew how many nice
things were behind those "exclusive-looking" brown doors
in all of the airports we've been in! I'm glad to see what nice
amenities all those rich-folks have been enjoying...and we're getting
our fill, since we don't plan on shelling out the $500+ annual fee
to join these li'l gin-joints! The free food and bloody marys have
been great, though...and, yes Mamie, I did have an extra one in
A direct link for the "Live-View" map of our flight to
Roatan (will show up once we take off from Houston): Click
We've arrived... Victor, Mallory and Shelsie met us at the airport
and we headed directly to the house. Janeht had made Matt's favorite
Pollo y Coco (Chicken and Coconut), rice, beans and corn tortillas.
YUM! We went and walked around Victor's "new project"
-- all I can say is it looks pretty fun! Of course, it's only laid-out
with rope right now...the cable will be strung later. Yes, the project
is a new Zipline...right behind his home on family property. We
sat by the new souvenir shop and admired the new animal cages, fences,
public restrooms, etc. They've done a lot in the past 6 months...truly
amazing! Victor shared more great stories of growing up in Sandy
Bay...and how only one person had electricity so it was SOOOO dark
coming home from friends, family or the store each night. Naturally
ghost stories were always shared...and Victor said many times he
walked the dirt road home in total darknes...in tears...as the moonlight
played strange games with his senses upon the surrounding trees
Checked in at the Mayan and hopped in for a quick swim. One Salva
Vida, then off to bed. We have to be on the ferry for La Ceiba at
6:30...and Victor says their family is always the last one aboard!
YOU, MOM!!! for taking care of "The Girlz".
Don't let those single ladies get you in any trouble!!! We are looking
forward to seeing how fat a greyhound can get, when we return! If
they put on too much weight, YOU have to pay for their
A bizzy, bizzy day! We met Victor at 6:15 (surprise, surprise...on
island time!) to rush back to the house, pick up 5 freshly-showered
ladies and zip to the ferry for the 7AM ferry service to La Ceiba
on the Mainland!!
Luckily, the ferry was packed...and there was a long line to buy
tickets, so we made it with plenty of time to spare. All of the
upstairs seats were full, so we had to sit downstairs. The ferry
is very similar to the one we took in Alaska for our up-close visit
to the glacier...except this one passed out sea-sick bags. Victor
(and STEVE) both fear sea sickness, so Dr. Matthew had the sea-sick
electronic watches ready to go. For those that have never tried
them, they send a shock every few seconds to the nerve in your wrist...this
nerve somehow tells your brain that all is well, and basically just
to "get over it!". Both Victor and Steve made it through
the hour-and-a-half trip with no problems. Dr. Matthew saves the
La Ceiba is a big city...and there are actually stop lights and
lots of traffic! There are Burger Kings, Pizza Huts, KFC's, Popeye's,
Wendy's, Dunkin' Donuts, etc, if that gives you a better idea! Victor
got us downtown to the Paris Hotel with no problems... We locked
things in the safe and headed to Water Jungle...a Splash-town type
water park with tons of slides and water fun for all of us.
After a long day at the water park, we headed to the mall for dinner.
Steve treated everyone to Applebee's! Their first time to visit
there...they loved the boneless Buffalo Wings, the Stuffed Chicken
Breast and Rib-Eye Steak! But, the favorite by far...the Triple
Chocolate Meltdown for dessert... Victor took a load of us home
after dinner, since we were all so worn out! Angie was the first
to poop out in the van ride to the hotel, then Mallory...and I'm
sure Victor went right to bed when he got to his room... Steve was
in bed by 8:30 if that tells you anything (Janeht, Bianca &
Shelsie are still shopping at the mall...and will return by taxi!)
I'm headed to my bed just as soon as I get done with "this"!
We have decided to head to Copan tomorrow (a 5 hour car trip on
Honduran Highways...yikes!), so that we can spend more time learning
about the Mayan culture and exploring the dwellings and tunnels
beneath them. I can hardly wait...after reading more about the Copan
Ruins, which just recently were opened to the public...I can hardly
wait to get there, take a bunch of photos/videos...and then bore
everyone with them when I get home! On that note...I'm sure I've
bored all of you...so goodnight and manana from Copan, Honduras!
Wow...what an intersting drive to Copan. Pineapple Farms, Palm Tree
Farms (where they harvest the fruit for Palm Oil, etc), Coffee Plantations...and
beautiful mountainous scenery everywhere.
The Mayan Ruins at Copan are amazing. We're heading back tomorrow
to spend time in the underground exploration tunnels where we hope
to learn alot more about these magnificent people. Enjoy the photos...
It has been a long day and I'm cutting it short.
One quick note... Copan is a definite Vacation Destination! Climate
like Ruidoso (cool with daily showers), GREAT coffee from local
roasters, cobblestone streets and very reasonable food/lodging.
We all had steak tonight...with soup, sides, drinks, etc. for around
$11 per person (and that was HERE at the hotel!) Our room is much
more of a resort-type room than we are used to -- and it was only
$70 per night. Yikes...it beats any Fort Stockton La Quinta at the
Honduran Tipico for breakfast at 8, so I'm turning in! Photos of
the city of Copan and views from inside the exploration tunnels
Here is our hotel, Hotel
Marina Copan, while in Copan Ruinas, Honduras. Plus, added a
few more pictures into the Saturday gallery...of the home improvements
at Victor's house.
The tunnels under the temples of Copan were amazing! We had a wonderful
older gentleman that told us all about the ruins and then escorted
us through the tunnels. I was truly amazed at every turn. What a
fascinating civilization -- way beyond it's time...the tunnels were
cooled with outdoor air, passing over stones to chill the air...they
had drainage for showers...and the carvings are magnificent! I could
literally spend a month or more here just taking it all in...what
a wondeful life experience. I hope to return someday and spend more
time -- sorry, but it's really just amazing...
I can't wait to read more about the Mayan rulers and their civilizations.
It seems each ruler would build on top of the previous rulers temple...
There were huge stones in the courtyard that you could tap your
foot on...and it sounded like hollow wood -- it was merely a "cap"
over the previous ruler's city. There are miles and miles of tunnels
within the temples (and connecting them underground) that they are
still exploring...what a wonderful job.
The trip back was fun...until we hit the rain. It was the heaviest
rain I've ever seen, plus driving in Honduras is not quite like
driving in the States. We had to wait for two herds of brahma bulls
to clear the road, we passed thousands of bicycles, pedestrians,
and livestock walking on the roadway. There were tractors, mule-team
driving wagons, and US school buses which have been converted to
the public transportation system. Passing on the two-lane road is
a harrowing experience...but, luckily Victor is truly an expert.
We all had a good laugh when getting to our hotel in La Ceiba --
how we had seen it all: cows, dogs, bicycles, people, fruit vendors,
buses, tractors and wagons...and if that wasn't enough, we were
presented with monsoon-like rains and darkness! Boy we were happy
to get to La Ceiba...and check in at...are you ready for this???
(Keep your excitement to a minimum, it's not "that" La
Quinta...but, we got a good kick out of it!)
The ferry for Roatan leaves at 9:30AM and 4:30PM...we sure hope
we're on the early one! I think it's time for a Monkey La-La on
Sunshine in Roatan? YES!
Well, time for the "Same Song/Different Verse" blog...
I'm worn out today and am finishing a few comments and heading to
the bed! Steve drew the short straw and is getting the pull-out
couch for tonight -- I'm just going to enjoy the "real"
bed and giggle everytime Steve complains tomorrow!
Well, we made it to the ferry "just in time" and got a
prime seat up top. We thought it was prime seating...but the ferry's
deparature was delayed and it was VERY hot with little air circulation.
We made it through and the ferry took off. Victor hates the trip
back to Roatan by ferry, since you are heading right into the Gulf
of Honduras currents...he said today's trip was calm compared to
most. Well, everyone on board thought otherwise... it was just nasty!
Luckily, nobody in our group or area became ill, but we knew it
wasn't going well when one of the crew grabbed a bag and let 'er
rip over the stairwell. Egads! What were we in for?
Good News, it was pretty much over as soon as it started...and we
arrived in Roatan with no problems. I must go back a few days to
let you know our menu after dining on delicious Pollo Y Coco made
by Janeht on the first night. In La Ceiba, we ate at a cafeteria
featuring tortillas, frijoles, plantains, etc. all cooked various
ways a la Luby's! Very unique experience...and quite tasty, too!
That night, we had Applebee's! We ate at Wendy's for lunch and pineapple
off the side of the road on the way to the Ruins...had the best
steak ever that night at the Marina hotel. Then ate roasted corn
and steamed corn with lime and salt (from a highway side stand)
and a full bunch of bananas (maybe 60 on the stem?) from a stand
a few hours later. Upon arrival in Roatan, we ate at Pizza Inn!
Lord, what has Honduras come to??? I'm sure we'll be back in the
"homemade" cooking mode again tomorrow...at least I hope
After pizza, we headed back to the hotel. (By the way, one of Victor's
"ace" guides, Ben, picked us up at the Ferry...what a
nice and genuine man!) We walked the beach and sampled the local
cervezas at the Infinity Bay resort, where we talked with the owner
of the resort (we'd met him on our "First Class" trip
via Continental) On the way back to the Mayan, we stopped for some
fresh mango daiquiris (they chopped the mango into the drink..YUM!),
then went for a swim. The crystal clear water off West Bay beach
and chilled-water swimming pool at the Mayan Princess really were
We grabbed a water taxi and headed to West End, a quaint village
of shops and restaurants. Both Mamie and Mommy have gifts coming
from "Waves of Art"...Mamie's in a small box...Mommy's
will have to be shipped to Ruidoso! Oh my, susprizes are so much
fun! We returned via water taxi to the hotel with our loot...and
then walked down to "Bite on the Beach" for a tasty dinner
(Matt had Lobster with Blue Cheese and Sun Dried Tomatoes... Steve
had Shrimp with a fresh Pineapple sauce) We're fat and happy...Steve
is back at the pool, so I'm getting in the bed and throwing his
pillows on the pull-out before he tries a "two out of three"
arrangement on sleeping accomodations! Hasta... Oh, Victor will
call at 9AM with maybe the girls coming over around 10AM for a swim?!?
A wonderfully relaxing day at West Bay beach... Nice and sunny with
a beautiful breeze as the sun set. The Bodden family joined us for
an evening of swimming in the clear waters of West Bay...and then
a lot of fun in the Mayan pool. Once darkness fell, the whole group
strolled down the beach to Banarama, where we feasted on Coconut
Shrimp, Chicken Strips and Hamburgers! YUM!
Early morning tomorrow...Victor's picking us up at 7:30AM -- a cruise
ship arrives at 9AM and we have to pick up the zipline supplies
that arrived by freighter this morning. We're also going to try
and get some pictures of shoppers at Janeht's souvenir store and
of the tourists and the monkeys (for his website). I guess this
will qualify as "work" and make the whole trip a write
off on next year's taxes?!? I don't see why not!
H-a-p-p-y B-i-r-t-h-d-a-y to Steve...looking jus' fine at Forty-Nine!
I heard they were shooting fireworks in your honor along the East
River of Manhattan?!
Steve had a great birthday... We started the morning enjoying the
beach...and having coffee and breakfast at the Mayan's breakfast
bar. Victor picked us up and we were off to get some photos of the
visitors to his monkeys (for his website). There was a quite a bunch
that came through....and everyone left very happy! The newest little
monkeys are just so loveable...and of course the spider monkeys
are still sweet as ever.
Janeht prepared us the most delicious roast, which I will have to
get the recipe for...along with her "better-than-Matthew's"
mashed pototoes, fried plantains, frijoles and delicious rice. As
per usual, Matt had two plates full...Lord, how fat can he get in
We did a litle shopping at Yaba
Ding-Ding in Coxen Hole, bought some fruits and veggies for
later and picked up some fun things from Palanca,
the local wood carving expert! We picked up our final package from
of Art in West End. I'm glad we emptied 2 pieces of luggage
when we got here...we're going to need ALL that room, and more to
We made a few gift purchases at Janeht's new gift shop at the homestead,
and Victor and the boys headed to the beach for a while. After a
nice sunset, we headed back to the Bodden home and went "up
the hill" to Victor's mother's home. All of her children were
together for the first time in 5 years (2 daughters came in today...one
from Cozumel, one from St. Thomas, VI), so we sat on the porch enjoying
stories of them growing up on the island. It was a real treat for
the two outsiders from the US...but Victor's mother beckoned us
up to the porch of her house and said, "you are part of our
family, and I would like to invite you into my family home to share
dinner with us. Mi casa es su casa" It was quite an honor coming
for the matriarch of such a fine and loving family.
We ate a great meal prepared by the mother, daughters and grand
daughters: Pollo y Coco, Mashed Potatoes, a chicken tamale...and
then crab soup, which we both feared. We asked for a small bowl,
since we both dread "fishy" tasting seafood. Out came
two huge bowls with 9" long land-crab pinchers sticking out
of them. I thought I was going to die...there are holes all over
Roatan, literally, and we were going to eat these nasty creatures.
Alas, we both took a spoonful...and it was DELICIOUS (made with
Coconut Water, straight out of the coconuts out front). The daughter
from Cozumel, Louella, showed us how to bite the crab leg to crack
it, then use the huge pincher to dig out the meat. We finished off
with a great cake made by Lillian, Victor's sister, called pumpkin
cake. Everyone seemed intrigued as to why Americans carved up pumpkins,
put them on their porch, then threw them away...I agree now that
I have tasted this wonderful cake! Forget Jack o' lanterns, I'm
going to make cake!
Steve sez "Thanks to everyone for the birthday greetings, I'm
going to relax in the pool" ... Some things never change!
...and the days dwindle down to a precious few...
No comments here...or on the pix. Too much packing to do! Enjoy
the photos from West Bay beach, West End and Steve's Surprise Party
(AGAIN!) He's so lucky!!!
Tracking Information on our Flight back to Houston (boo!) can be
obtained by clicking on the small yellow arrow in the info-box to
A direct link for the "Live-View" map of our flight to
Houston (will show up once we take off from Roatan): Click
A direct link for the "Live-View" map of our flight to
San Antonio (will show up once we take off from Houston): Click
HereAnd I must say, if you're so bored that you have to
stay up until midnight tracking our flight home...I feel jus' a
little sorry for ya'!!