Thursday January 7, 2010
I spent the night in the COLD! mountain town of La Palma…just shy of the El Salvador / Honduran Border. The plan was to spend the night close to the border, cross over super early, and go see the Copan ruins on the way to San Pedro Sula.
The nice fellow at the KTM shop in San Salvador, where I got my new chain, had contacted a motorcyclist friend of his, George, who told me that they have a motorcycle gathering every Thursday…and I wanted to be there for that.
Well, the border officials had a different idea for my day. They thought I would be MUCH happier spending 7 1/2 hours there with them, and missing the ruins, and riding after dark to San Pedro Sula.
By the time I got to San Pedro, I was frazzled. I’d lost my cool at the border and let the process really upset me. The depth of the ineptitude was overwhelming (It has since been suggested to me that perhaps they were after a bribe–they were waiting for me to ask how much it would take to get me out of there quickly–I am not totally sure of this.)
For the first time on my trip I came across kids that had put dirt in the road and wanted me to stop and pay them money. (I’d read about this on the motorcycle forums, so at least I was forewarned…) I slowed down, then went over the dirt mound really fast and just kept on riding.
The road quality in Honduras had changed dramatically–there were huge woman-and-bike-eating potholes , places where the pavement had been severely damaged, places where the pavement ended and you had to ford your way across dirt and rocks. The curious thing to me was that at least Honduras MARKED the places with signage where the road turned bad (most of the time). In the previous countries people just put rocks or branches in the road to warn you.
The good thing was the scenery was absolutely incredible–it made up for the terrible roads
I arrived in San Pedro in a “state”. I’d ridden for more than an hour after dark, I had no idea where I was going, and finally just quit riding. I called George, asked him to come and get me.
I had a great time with the other bikers at S’Tragos Bikers Saloon, and fortunately they’d changed my point of view on Honduras