When I first got to Honduras, I couldn’t even imagine 27 months into the future when I would be leaving. Even a year into service, it still seemed so far away. Now, it doesn’t seem so far with only about five months left. Not only is five months pretty close, but I have more than 3 weeks of vacation left and at some point plan on taking a two-week trip to visit other Water and Sanitation volunteers in Honduras to do some work and check out their sites. I feel like before I know it I’ll be vacationing in some other country before heading back to Philly to look for a job.
It’s all working out though, work has been slower lately as I usually only work in the mornings and have all the afternoon to do whatever I want. I have a couple of things left that I hope to accomplish with work in these next few months. The amount of free time I have is amazing. I love not having to work 8+hour days that just leave me tired afterwards.
So vacations… A bunch of us are going to spend New Years in El Salvador on the beach, or so is the plan for now. We’ll probably spend a couple days in the capital, San Salvador, also. That should make for a nice mix of big city/beach time for the week. Then, sometime in late January or early February, I plan on going back to Guatemala. That leaves me with just a few vacation days left which I’m not sure what I’ll do with them, maybe Nicaragua or the Bay Islands? When someone finishes Peace Corps, they get a readjustment allowance. This money is supposed to be used to help the returned volunteer ‘readjust’ to life, but many volunteers use it to travel for a while after their service. I don’t know what I’ll do with it, but some exciting adventure seems like the right choice.
Finally, the news about the drug lords! Last week I got a cold that was kicking my butt so I had no plan on going to the office on Wednesday. (Side note, there used to be a few people living near my office with really nice houses, cars, big guns, and bodyguards. What business could they possibly be involved in?) Brett, a PC volunteer from about an hour away sent me a text message saying that he had heard something about cops raiding some drug lords’ houses in Juticalpa and that something was going down. Surprised that I hadn’t heard anything, I called someone from my office. He went on to tell me that A LOT of cops were looking for these people and that he was watching a lot of it from our office. These cops were from the capital, Teguicalpa, although rumors were going around that either the DEA or INTERPOL were involved in the raids. The cops are very corrupt here and the guys they were looking for had skipped town due to some information leaks. When my friend left the office, the cops had 7 of the bodyguards handcuffed and were trying to get information from them. In the afternoon the next day, news came out that the police had captured either three or all four of the major drug lords in Juticalpa! This was huge and awesome news in my opinion, but to no surprise, after a few more days they no longer had any of them. Two of the four have international arrest warrants out for them and supposedly none of them will be coming back to Juticalpa anytime soon because it would just be trouble waiting for them. So cheers to a safe Juticalpa! Lechayum!