We learned from our condo caretaker Kent that one of the three seasons of the now defunct reality show, Temptation Island, was shot here on Roatan, where my friend Audrey and I are spending the weekend.
ROATAN, ISLA DE BAHIAS, HONDURAS — This is what it took to get here: A 5:30am flight out of DCA that we nearly missed because Audrey had set out her things to pack the night before but did not actually pack bags until I got to her house to pick her up for the airport. She had accidentally fallen asleep and ended up assembling her things in the span of 18 minutes that I gave her before I was going to head to the airport without her.
From DCA we flew to Houston, made a quick connection and then both got our first class upgrades for the longer flight into San Pedro Sula. The guy sitting next to me was super friendly and Audrey thought he might be with a drug cartel. We know not…
Arrive in San Pedro Sula to a customs area without a ceiling. Good thing we were the first off the plane because the customs situation was not swift.
Had three hours to kill before our flight to the islands. Filled the time the following ways:
1.) Laying out in the grass outside the airport watching some Hondurans load a casket into a truck
2.) Eating at the Wendy’s at the airport and not getting change cause they didn’t have it, later being asked to sign a guest book with comments about the food. (I just put Buen Provecho cause it’s something I learned in Spanish class.)
3.) Doing tricep dips off the airport chairs because they are the perfect height for tricep dips and Matty never lets me do them while traveling with him because he thinks I look like a total idiot. Audrey gamely joined, then…
4) Doing a set of wall sits for one minute each, also to pass the time.
5) Buying some really ugly postcards. How come all the postcards here have sexy ladies on them? I want just one, good environmental shot.
Finally, our tiny twin engine plane arrived to take us to what we thought was Roatan, the largest of the Bay Islands. We get on the plane with the 12 other people who can fit in there, joke about how we are going to die, and sit in some 100+ degree humidity because the pilots actually have to turn the plane back on. Listen to the engines rev up. Fan ourselves, make it up in the air.
Then we land, but not on an island. We are still on the mainland, but in La Ceiba, which is along the coast. Turns out we have to get off and await a second puddle jumper to take us to Roatan. Things start not being so funny anymore. We wait for an hour with a Slovak gal, her British boyfriend and a dude from Chicago named John.
Finally, our next scary small plane arrives to take us to Roatan. We make it to the island and get groceries (it’s much, much more Western here than the town we stayed in in Costa Rica a couple months ago), and on the way we meet a couple that works for Continental Airlines, aka the NEW United, and they are pissed about this merger. Everyone at Continental seems pissed about the merger, I tell ya. Something about how their awesome service and family-feeling brand has been subverted by this corporate giant full of cold employees. Anyway it turns out we all hate Jeff Smisek and form a little bond there on the ride to the condos.
We got to our condo on the water just in time for sunset. Our caretaker Kent stays on the property, which I would describe as similar to the Melrose Place layout, only on the Caribbean. I asked one couple, Mark and Marley, how long they’ve been on vacation and Mark said, “We’re on permanent vacation.” Where do these people come from?
Anyway, this six-condo complex has a delicious restauarant that makes fish and shrimp dishes with seafood caught today. And it has the only full on brick pit smoker on Roatan, so the barbecue is supposed to be excellent as well. I went with garlic shrimp and ate the shit out of it. Audrey and I sat overlooking the water with our big plates, having as romantic a time as we could being not-romantically-involved-with-one-another. Meanwhile our server, Randy, was watching the Braves demolish the Nationals and very happy about it. I guess he’s a big Braves fan.
Because estoy embarazada, I cannot scuba dive, which is what this island is known for. Audrey, who is an international scuba instructor, is off on some deep dive called “Texas” because everything encountered on the dive is so large. So I am hanging out here on a deck in between the pool and the Caribbean Sea with some parrots. Later I will go check out the fishies in the ocean via snorkel and perhaps chat some more with ol’ Randy. I’ll check in when I find internet again…
P.S. This is a pretty pain-in-the-ass-island to get to. But there is a Bojangles chicken on Roatan. No joke.