We crossed the border into Honduras. Charles stayed with the bikes and I walked around to get our paperwork sorted. Eventually I find some random building out of the way that supposedly is the place for the vehicle import papers. There’s one girl behind a desk, instant messaging her friends and blaring music. I make conversation and we get the paperwork underway. I always like to be friendly with these border folks. Friendly but stern so they open up and help me through the process swiftly. It worked well but after about an hour I was getting tired. Then I realized that I rode my motorcycle 10,000 miles from New Hampshire to Honduras. I’m sitting at a border in Central America and holding a conversation in Spanish. How cool is this!?!?!? I start grooving to her music and she smiles. Finally we get our paperwork sorted as the sun is setting. Charles tells me he bought food for a bum and talked to a guy who’s brother walked from Honduras to Texas. Wow, that’s hardcore.
We high tail it to cover as much ground as we can. We broke the first two cardinal rules of adventure motorcycle touring that night.
- Never ride at night.
- Never ride at night.
The lights on my KLR are terrible. Combined with the lights of oncoming traffic, the glare in my face shield, the lack of any street lights, cars without brake lights or headlights, zillions of bicycles, farm animals, and poor road conditions, it’s pretty much impossible to be safe while riding at night. Passing traffic became scary and so we hugged the tire tracks behind an 18 wheeler for quite a few miles. Although slow, it worked out well because I knew his brake lights worked, he couldn’t stop fast, I could see what was in front of me, and if a cow jumped in the road he would keep his momentum. Safe enough…. but slow. Charles made a good call to stop for the night. We pulled into a hotel on the side of the highway and negotiated the price down 25% by telling her that she would be sad if we were hit by a truck while riding at night.
Up early the next morning we set out. We’ve dropped elevation and the temperature is very hot. I soak my shirt in water and it’s like air conditioning during the ride. Refreshing. Every few miles we see kids on the side of the road holding out giant iguanas from the tails. Food? Pets? Unfortunately, we don’t have any room (in our stomachs or luggage). About 2 hours later and we’re at the border with Nicaragua. I really wanted to explore more of Honduras but because of my breakdown in El Salvador we need to make up time so we decided to press on. Like Belize I didn’t even try any of the beer; that’s the real tragedy.
I get our paperwork sorted at the Honduras side of the border and Charles goes to spend the rest of our cash. If we don’t spend it now we’ll have to convert it with the money changers for a poor rate. With the equivalent of $4 USD he comes back with 10 half-liter bags of water (yes, bags), 2 Gatorades, and a dozen mini loaves of corn bread. Perfect.
There were a bunch of “border kids” hanging around with us. The only English phrases they knew were:
- Give me 1 dollar American.
- Give me 20 dollar. Give him (the other kid) 1 dollar. Give him (the third kid) 2 dollar.
- Give me 3,000 American.
- Give me (points to glasses, then helmets, then jacket, then everything else)
These kids were harmless and we had so much fun chit-chatting with them. We ended up giving them most of the bags of water and each a loaf of bread figuring that it was better than giving them money. At least this way they are getting nutrition.
Goodbye Honduras. Hello Nicaragua.