Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Random Thoughts

Random thoughts and experiences from Honduras...

  • It's important to understand words...especially in another language. I am not fluent, very far from it. However, I'm excited to learn more. I had learned aunt, uncle, mother, father, grandfather, grandmother, sister, brother. That's enough for family, right? Wrong! I had been talking (as best as I could) with a girl holding a young one. She was eleven and the child was three. I had tried to find out whose baby it was. She said, "primo." I misunderstood and thought primo meant first...It means cousin. I was shocked that an eleven year old had a three year old child and then learned later that evening that she had said cousin. Whoops!
  • It's important to give the benefit of the doubt. I had used my Spanish to figure out calculator and was asking to borrow it for the team members to calculate money and tips for our translators and helpers. He was showing me the difference in asking for a feminine object versus a masculine object. The team borrowed it and took it into the side room. I, with slow speech and hand gestures, told him that the group had it in the other room and they will bring it back soon. One of the girls from our team behind me in the lobby told me he had lived in Texas...yup, the hotel clerk totally understood English. I removed my foot from my mouth and enjoyed a good laugh!
  • Going through security in Honduras was a bit of a chore. I walked through the metal detector and it went off. I had forgotten to take off my name badge around my neck. Walked through it went off again. I got taken aside, patted down, and swiped with the wand. It turns out when you pin up your hair with massive amounts of bobby pins, the metal detector goes off.
  • When leaving Honduras, my stomach was still quite upset. I asked for a ginger ale on the plane and ended up not drinking it. Fast forward to going through customs in Miami...fine. Going through security in Miami...not so fine. My backpack didn't come back to me. They took it off the line and put it on the floor. I wasn't quite sure what was going on. The security guard took my bag over to a side counter. I reached over to clip my water bottle onto the bag and he, in a very firm voice, told me not to touch my bag. Oh, okay...I wasn't even sure what had happened...random checking? Turns out I had left the can of ginger ale in there. He took it out, threw it away, and even wiped my bag with a cloth to see if I had any sort of chemical in there. I was shocked, amazed, stressed, and a little excited that I got to see part of the security in action. I'll do better at next security checkpoints in the future.

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