Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Rain, rain, and more rain

Honduras rarely gets international news coverage, so when the beeb is talking about us you know it's a big deal.

The rainy season kicked off with a big-ish storm in late September, and it's only gotten worse from there. First there was a Tropical Depression and a low pressure system that collided right over Honduras, causing widespread flooding and landslides. Now there's a cold front dumping rain all over northern Honduras. The road through Tocoa is flooded for the umpteenth time this month, essentially cutting off Trujillo and eastern Colón from the rest of the country.

It's drizzling right now, which is the first time it hasn't poured in about 36 hours. Trujillo is weathering all this pretty well - we're a town built on hills so the water just runs into the bay. But food prices - already up 20 to 40% in the last year - are likely to shoot up as almost all domestic crops have been severely damaged or lost completely.

For the time being, I'm fine. I bought a pair of galoshes and a big umbrella and so I'm able to get to the internet cafe to do work and write blog updates. I'm also spending a lot of time cooking and reading at home. And there is one big benefit from all this rain: it's cold! Highs only in the mid 70's this week. I actually slept with a small blanket last night.

Monday, October 20, 2008

RPCVs + Honduran Artisans = ArteVida

When I first arrived in Trujillo 16 months (!) ago, there was already another volunteer here. Brent had been in Trujillo for a year, and helped introduce me to the town and it's people, gave me lots of invaluable advice, and became a good friend.

Brent is an RPCV (Returned Peace Corps Volunteer) now, but he still maintains a strong connection to Honduras. Along with two other RPCVs he founded ArteVida, a fair trade arts and crafts store that provides an online marketplace for Honduran artisans. They just had their grand opening, so check them out! Every purchase helps support small business and sustainable development in Honduras.

Monday, October 6, 2008

lightning strike

Almost identical to last year, this year's rainy season started off with a bang, with a huge multi-day storm in late September. A little over a week ago, I was out in the central park when the storm hit, and lightning started crashing all around us. As soon as the rain let up a bit and the lightning moved off into the distance, I hurried home.

My apartment was filled with acrid electrical smoke when I arrived home. My speakers, fan, and laptop power supply (which I had stupidly left plugged in) were all fried. Until I get a replacement power supply (about 4 weeks or so given honduran shipping times) there probably won't be many blog/foto updates. Just so you know.

My birthday was also this week! Mary, Amanda and I celebrated by watching the VP debate, and cooking lots of good food (including Dr. Dingman's Favorite Pumpkin Pie).

[on soapbox]
In about an hour I leave for La Ceiba to pick up my absentee ballot and vote! I'm very excited about it. Hondurans here are abuzz about the US elections. If you're american, then you have the privilege to affect the outcome of elections that will in turn affect many people all over the globe. Don't take that privilege lightly. Please do your research and vote.
[off soapbox]

That's about it for now. I hope everyone who's reading this is well and good, wherever you are.