Saturday, April 16, 2011

More Firsts...Some Good, Some...Eh

16/4/11
Kristen says...

Well, I've been experiencing a few more Honduran firsts this week...actually, they're all just firsts, which is both good and bad, but they're happening to me in Honduras, so...

Anyway, semantics aside.

My first first was of the "eh" variety...

I ran out of gas on my way home Wednesday.

On Boulevard Morazan.

400 yards from the house.

200 yards from the gas station.

Awesome.

Believe it or not, I have never run out of gas before! I am usually very conscious about things like that, because I consider it very, VERY embarrassing to be that person on the side of the road, struggling to push the car up the hill to the gas station. (And, now I can say from personal experience, it is!) Except I didn't have to do any pushing, luckily.

Chris told me I needed to fill up the tank...and I agreed with him. I would, once he was in the car with me. In Honduras they don't let you fill up your own tank...it's all full service down here...which is nice, but intimidating. I'd rather have my husband deal with it...or at least have someone else in the car with me. (Which, as I'm writing it, sounds so silly...isn't it less safe to be outside your car filling up than inside where you can quickly start the engine and drive away, whether or not someone else is in the car with you?)

Silliness aside, that's how I feel, so I was waiting to have Chris in the car with me to fill up the tank. We were going to do it on the way home from yoga on Tuesday (another first...I'll get there in a minute..) but he was like, disgustingly sweaty, so we skipped it.

Mistake :)

I was taking another teacher home after school on Tuesday and had just started to turn the car onto the road to get to her road (follow that?) when the car starts to sputter, slow down, and then dies.

I'm thinking, oh crap and looking at the gas gauge, which still says I have about 1/10th of a tank left. She's instructing, "Pull over, turn on your hazards, get to the side!" because there is a car coming straight at us (honking all the way, like any good Honduran driver).

I hit the hazards, shut off the ignition, and then re-started the car. Magically, it restarts...so I quickly drive her up the hill and drop her off at her house, PRAYING I will make it to the nearest gas station, which isn't very near at all.

And I almost made it!

I had to go down about 6 hills and up about 7, and then got onto the Boulevard. I passed the road to our house, and could see the gas station when...cough, clank, die. And it would NOT restart this time.

So I called Chris. But he's on call this week and couldn't come help.

So, I had 2 choices. I could walk to the gas station (only 200 yards, but on a very busy road with no sidewalks, and I was by myself) or grab the older, friendly-looking taxi driver cleaning his car across the street.

I chose the taxi driver.

I locked the car and ran across the road with cell phone and wallet in hand, and in very unintelligible Spanish (I can never remember what I want to say in "emergency" situations) told him I was out of gas and asked if he could drive me to the gas station.

It took a minute, but he finally understood what I meant, and agreed to take me. So I got in the car and he drove me past my car to the gas station.

When we got there, he asked if I had a container for the gas, which of course I didn't. Luckily he had one. Then he went and got the gas, but I only had 40 lps with me and a full gallon cost 90 (just under $5.00), so he spotted me the 50 lps. When we got back to the car he asked if I had a funnel (which, of course, I didn't.) So he used one of the Diet Pepsi bottles in my car to make one...he had no cutting tool, so he used his tire iron to hit it until the plastic broke. He poured in the gas, then put away his tools and told me to get in and turn the car on, then he stood there with traffic whizzing by listening to my engine to make sure I was going to be ok.

I paid him back for the gas and gave him 100 lps as a thank you very much for being a great guy and not robbing or killing me...I don't think he expected that at all from the look on his face...sot hat made me feel good, but he had been really, really helpful.

Anyway, I drove the last 200 yds on that gallon of gas and got the tank filled, and that was the end of that adventure.
--

Another "first" is just beginning...it's Semana Santa (Holy Week) and I am off school (starting Thursday at 3:30) until Tuesday the 26th! I don't really have many plans for this break, but I hope to be productive...we'll see.

So far I've:
-eaten doughnuts with Chris
-had lunch with a teacher-friend and her baby boy (so cute!!)
-finished 2 books
-slept in once
-made beer bread (not too bad--Chris gave up alcohol for Lent (another first), so I guess this is his way of "cheating"?)
-blogged about running out of gas

What I need to do:
-check the 3 tests I gave on Thursday
-grade all the assignments I had due last week
-plan my lessons for the 3 days after the break which I will be missing to chaperon our Model UN team in La Ceiba
-and other stuff tbd
-oh yeah, relax and enjoy my break.

The only solid plans I have right now are to go see the alfombras (carpets) in Comayagua on Good Friday..other than that, I'm a free bird :)

Anyway, hope you are enjoying your week, Semana Santa or no...

KF

1 comment:

  1. Go early on Friday morning so you can find parking and won't miss the processions! :)

    ReplyDelete

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