Seth’s birthday

Posted by on 29 Mar 2010 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

Well we apologise for the lack of photos we have had no success in sending them but will keep trying and will try and send extras soon. Seth had his 13th birthday on Tuesday, we went to a water park near Teguc and had a great time going down water slides some were pretty scary! I think me and Hamish enjoyed them more than the kids. Seth took three of his friends from the finca and they enjoyed it we are now the proud parents of a teenager…..one week in we are surviving! I spent a couple of nights staying in hospital with one of the girls who had an operation, which thankfully went well and she is recovering nicely. We have had loads of forest fires here but the bomberos seem to have diverted most of the danger though some have been pretty fierce, apparently we had an earthquake in the north, we read about it in the paper after the event I am pleased to say we weren’t aware of it. We have had a very busy week and feel rather tired tonight (am writing this whilst a party is going on in our house full of young people celebrating Danilos birthday, we picked up Chinese and there is a huge cake in the fridge!).
We visited Cesar who is director of a school in Guanacaste a rural community which is very poor and cut off from things. Cesar has been working there for three years and has done an amazing job with the school and community there. He has the support from Jenny Cox and team who are the charity CH Trust. They have sent out school supplies including desks and chairs, and a whole host of other things. The community had no electricity but the trust sent out a generator and now college classes can take place after the school day has finished and classes in the evening are teaching parents to read. Cesar has managed skilfully to get parents in the community involved. Parents come in every day to cook food for breaktime,which ensures the children are getting some good nutrition, the whole community seems proud of the benefits of improved education and environment, and it is clear they are working together well to better the whole community. It really was an encouraging thing to witness, and shows how a little aid put into capable hands and people taking responsibility and ownership of it can really make a huge difference. It was refreshing to see a state school doing so well, most of them have absolutely nothing and 1 or 2 teachers teaching every age group in one class with absolutely no resources. I was encouraged that Cesar was doing further study so he could climb the ladder to a position of authority in education in this country and his hearts is to get the school functioning well then go onto a help another one which is great. Both Cesar and the CH trust are doing a great job and may even need your help. Please check out their website if you have anything to donate.
We had a nice afternoon taking some of the older girls swimming at the park. They really appreciated it, we all had fun.
Our two girls were both sick the other day..Perhaps gulping to much water in the pool. They had fevers but got better really quick which was a relief. Our health has been great this trip none of the usual stuff, I think our stomachs are rock solid now.
We haven’t had water in our house this week which has been a challenge its been very hot and dusty our feet look disgusting. We fill up the pilla and throw brown looking water on us the first thing I am gonna do when on English soil is have a hot soak!! We all had a shower this morning it came on!!I was so happy!!it went off again mid morning!!!oh well it means no washing up tonight, we count our blessings.
Sang in church last week, went well, and it’s so refreshing to do something creative. It was Palm Sunday and we all got palms to wave and me and our midwife Northern girl friend from Hull got me giggling till I was crying. There was bits of corn stuff all over the floor from all the kids, and she said” I hope someone’s got a decent hoover,….A Dyson it just made us laugh, it was such a northern thing to say, in the middle of the worship time we were shaking with laughter ,like a couple of naughty kids! We are catching up with more people this week and we are very aware we are soon going home and it’s sad. We are ready to go home in some ways but we will be out again soon we hope. We would love to bring family and friends out here. Well I will get back to the party Danillo has just had his head pushed into the cake(a custom here) now my children are covered in egg icing and we have no water to clean them..Lovely! But they are smiling and making happy memories. Love to all will see you soon. Rachel Hamish and children.

The North Coast

Posted by on 20 Mar 2010 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

Well since we last wrote we travelled down to Trujillo, a place we visited when Seth was a baby. Seth was very travel sick on the way down, and sadly didn’t aim it out the window, and had to sit next to regurgitated melon for a couple of hours. We stayed in the same hotel which had a nice pool but looked very run down and spooky we were the only ones there! The kids were delighted to find a tarantula and rescued it from the pool. It took a few strikes at Seth but missed thankfully! The owner of the hotel had a stroke a while back and is desperate to sell it as all his family are in the states, felt really sorry for him, trapped by the recession. He kept asking us to buy it. They think every white man has money, and dropped the price to about half a million dollars. Seth asked us to buy it for him….the entrepreneur wanna be!!Not quite like buying him a bike. I don’t think the guy realised we really didn’t have the money.Hey but if any one reading this wants it, go for it, great potential and loads of land. I did tell him I would tell my rich friends!!
There were lots of Iguanas there and Seth in chasing one fell off a wall, or rather a rotten wooden post collapsed and he fell barefooted in a load of jungly brambles. I heard the scream then he appeared with blood dripping down his arm and leg which he had scraped quite badly. He was smiling even though he looked like someone had beaten him up! He thought all the blood was cool…It’s a boy thing!
We met a lovely lady in Trujillo who introduced us to her family I ended up with a gorgeous 3 month baby boy sleeping in my arms he was gorgeous.Didnt want to give him back. We visited a museum which was run down and closed. We also visited some hot springs which were great. It was touted as a resort with a spa. Again we were the only ones there, and they didn’t even have a drink for visitors in the fridge. Again the guy said no one is travelling and business is very bad. Though we had boiling hot springs all to ourselves it was lovely. All in all Trujillo felt more run down and neglected since we last there which is sad, as it’s a very beautiful place. The kids and Hamish walked up the mountain behind the hotel. Very tropical and dense, they enjoyed exploring. On our last night we had a terrific storm wind and rain so bad I thought we were in for another hurricane we got soaked .We then had to catch a 4am bus in this storm in pitch black, but it wasn’t too far. The bus crawled along unpaved dirt roads in driving rain for the first 7 hours. We averaged a speed of 20 miles an hour. To make matters even worse a guy brought his three huge sacks of fish freshly caught and was going to Tegucigalpa with us. The smell was awful and everyone who got on the bus said,pescado(fish)!It was like cod liver oil. The bus was so crowded there were 5 on a seat made for two and the whole centre isle was people crushed together standing. And still the bus would stop for more. It just makes me laugh. Our bottoms were numb. The next 6 hours were on faster roads which made us feel as though we were going to arrive after all.
There was a bit of excitement later on. One of the bus helpers lost his wallet which had about 35 pounds in. which is a good couple of week’s wages. He looked everywhere to find it. Then there was a rumpus as he marched a man off the bus and started searching him, I thought we were all going to get the same treatment, but no, he obviously suspected this man of robbing it. It all got a bit heated and the guy said he couldn’t check down his trousers and pulled out a police badge (or a fake one not sure).Another guy piped up that he had a machete on the bus. He told the guy he wasn’t going any further on this bus so he tried to get a taxi, with the victim in hot pursuit. No taxi would take him and he wandered off down the road. Everyone on the bus was now gawping to one side of the bus like a soap opera in slow motion seeing how it would all pan out. The guy who had lost is wallet then grabbed a passing pickup truck and rallied some help together and went after him. A couple of minutes later they drove back triumphantly with wallet in hand. He got back on the bus and told us all that one of the men had a gun and they had threatened to shoot him if he didn’t return it. He had hidden it in his pants! Everyone was pleased that justice had been done it was like a feel good movies happy ending!!He was beaming!!This whole incident lasted just over 30 mins and the bus driver helped him, it just wouldn’t happen in England but glad they all stuck together and got the thief (not that I’m condoning gun crime..As far as we know no one was hurt.)Our kids were very impressed and it led o a very interesting discussion of our justice system.
We got to Teguc. It always amazes me how the houses and shanty towns seem to cling to every hill, it’s a busy, filthy, terribly poor and filthy rich kind of place. You never feel completely safe but I love it, and hate it all at the same time. I never get used to seeing little children with hardly any clothes in the streets begging for money with a pimp watching nearby. There was a boy no older than 14, with eyes rolled into the back of his head, firebreathing by pouring petrol down his throat and setting fire as he blew out. This apparently is entertainment; he then holds his hands out to all the passing cars for money. He has no shoes and obviously lives on the streets. It’s a massive problem here, and very difficult to help them. There are lots of people trying thankfully. We spent the last night in a lovely hotel and travelled up to valle de Angeles again. Its great to be back. Hamish informed me we only had a couple of weeks left. I was so shocked thinking we had more time, it has gone so quickly. Next week we are going to help in a school and community high in the mountains. Tell you about it soon. All our love The Macdonalds.

travels

Posted by on 15 Mar 2010 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

We have taken a week or so off to holiday away from activity for a while.It involved a 9 hour bus ride down to Sambo creek..a sleepy little place near the sea.It is hot down here and even Hamish has succumbed to sun burn.We then took a boat to the Cayos cochinos(hog islands) and stayed for a couple of nights on an island so small you could walk around in 5 mins.It was beautiful and uncommercialized.We sayed in a garifuna community of 17 families and stayed in a hut with 3 single beds no water or electricity.We were given one bucket of fresh water a day to shower in.It had bugs and mosquitos we were glad we had brought a couple of nets,Flora got hysterical the first night as she was bitten by the ants on our sand floor and just got panicky about sleeping in the pitch black..you couldnt see your hand in front of you!The second night was better and cooler and we installed our own ensuite toilet for those night time needs..a tupperware container.The island shared three tilets which you had to flush with a bucket of sea water.It was very basic and very hot but there were only another couple of tourists there.Our kids played with the locals at cards and played tig around all the huts.They had a great time.I ended up having a conversation about the wonders of breastfeeding with a women of 11 children ,had a lovely chat,and we both shared such similar views.We ate rice beans and fish,the kids werent impressed but survived.We watched the men bringing in the fish and gutting them and throwing them to the pelicans.The local people were fantastic.Would love to spend mord time there though I have utmost respect for the simple life I think I would struggle with it long term.Back to sambo creek for a shower(first in 3 days..boy did we need it).Had a good meal and a sleep with air con..luxury.We are heading off somewhere else soon we will catch up soon and hope to put some pics that will make you all want to come to Honduras on soon.Our love to all always great to hear your messages..keep them coming.Rachel and Hamish and Kids.