A Weekly Journal Chronicling My Life
As It Intersects With The Garbage Dump Community Near La Ceiba, Honduras

Friday, April 30, 2010

Soplo Is Legal

our terribly eccentric friend soplo turned 18 yesterday but because he works all day sorting plastics that come off the garbage trucks we had to wait till the evening to celebrate. he invited mario and blas (his real name by the by) and we went to get a bite to eat and then came back to the house to sing and eat cake.
the candles were his idea

as was sticking his highly flammable hair too near the flames

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Ariel is 12

ariel (not the mermaid), turned 12 yesterday. he was the 6th kid i got to know in this community and while he's drifted away a bit and likes to do his own thing he always has a special place in my heart.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Wheel Rolls Off A Garbage Truck...

...dariana makes a necklace. now if we could only get her to start wearing clothes.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Dr. Cornflakes Will See You Now

Konrad found these on the ground here in the community the other day and snatched them up as quickly as he could. Apparently he wants to hang them on his dorm room wall next year to impress all those freshman at Goshen, I don't know. Oh, about the name Cornflakes, go here for the explanation.

who needs college anyway, you can learn all you need to know about neuroscience right here in the garbage dump of la ceiba

Friday, April 23, 2010

April 22nd

the birthday boys getting ready to hit the town

alejandra awaiting her slice of cake

singing 'happy birthday'

the aftermath
oh, and i'm 28 now...which is kind of no fun.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Monday, April 19, 2010

True Love

... and on tuesdays the children pop our zits

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Surf's Up

found this on the garabage truck and decided to give it a whirl in the river.
i don't think he was terribly successful.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


sergio's sister, chavela, is expecting and is supposedly due the 22nd of april. which means that if all goes according to plan the newest member of the espinoza family will be 3rd person in laureles to be born on the best day of the year. the other 2 are of course...

tolo and your's truly

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


yesterday was the first we've spent with Cesar and his family in what feels like ages. this family was the first that opened their home to me and i'm probably closer with them more than anyone else in the community. for whatever reason it's been a while since we've spent some real time with them but as Cesar proved here, nothing has changed.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Keeping Cool

It has been fantastically hot here this past week, the kind of hot that never really subsides; the sun may go down and night may take over but the heat and humidity still lingers. It's the kind of heat that makes sleep nearly unattainable and if it does come it's a fitful sleep, one that leaves you feeling drained and disoriented. And we're only in April, May and June are our hottest months so we have a lot to look forward to I suppose. During the day we do what we can to stay cool, we avoid the sun at all costs, we take frequent walks to the nearby river to take a quick dip and clean the dust and sweat off and I've taken to drinking coffee at mid-afternoon. The locals say it helps - I'm not so sure but I do so love the coffee.

what to do when you're too young to go to the river by yourself? fill up a bucket.

the funny thing is that mateito, the baby, was playing all by himself until the 2 older ones caught on and joined in the fun.

they were quickly scolded by their mother for wasting the water

in order to escape the heat on Saturday we caught a bus to the pineapple plantation and then hiked into the mountains.

stay cool. peace.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Good Friday River Swim

Thought I might show some shots from our Good Friday trip to La Sirena. We were 37 in all that day and I had to make 2 trips between Los Laureles and the swimming hole but it was so worth it.

lunch circles

heading home

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Palm Sunday Redux

So this may be a tad late in coming but I was looking back through my photos and really liked the sequence that came out for this particular day so I thought I might share them. The Wednesday before Palm Sunday we had our regular devotional and we talked a bit about Jesus' entrance into Jerusalem and what he was doing there...what was coming. Surprisingly enough not many of the kids knew about this part of the story so we decided to act it out with a visiting Gringo serving as the trusty steed.
tati, the boy in orange was a stand in for jesus in this version of the story
he was a little unsure of the whole thing but got used to it

after the story we drew about it in chalk on the steps...we received some interesting results

cristian refused to draw on the steps and so opted for the neighbor's outer wall

jesus on the colt


jesus loves you, courtesy of abel

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Naked Birthdays

darwin turned 3 today and we celebrated as we always do with cake and singing. he's been asking me for "his cake" as he calls it since about mid-january so today has been long in coming. one other thing that might be interesting to note about darwin is that he refuses to wear clothes; his mother will dress him in the morning and within 3o minutes he is completely naked and playing contentedly in the middle of the street with dirt and rocks. every now and then i'll try to encourage him to put something on, at the very least underwear but he'll just smirk, stick his toungue out and run away. this kid is nothing if he's not willfull and i gotta tell you i kind of admire the whole free-spirit, devil-may-care attitude he's got going on. by the by, speaking of crazies, his lunatic sister darianna who's throwing up gang signs there in the background claims that darwin, her 3 year old brother, is also her boyfriend. he wants nothing to do with the arrangement.


elvin cut himself with a knife this morning while he was reaching for a cup of water. so off we went to the emergency room to have him stitched up, with relatively few tears involved. the sad face here in the photo is all for show.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Perils of My Work

being held up by a bazooka-weilding 8 year-old

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Holy Week

So it's Easter today and once again it kind of arrived in an anticlimatic, almost unnoticed fashion. Easter, and Holy Week more generally has long been my favorite time of the year; the solemnity of the preceding week and the inner reflection and outward gratitude that takes place (along with the footwshing for we happy Mennonites). The pure, unadulterated joy we feel on Sunday morning with the announcement of Christ's triumph over death and hence our own triumph as well. It seems that this holiday more than any other really takes time not only to focus and reflect on who we are, our undeseverdness, our complete depravity (throwing a bone to the Calvinists) but also then to worship, celebrate and revel in Jesus and the work that he did in his life, death and resurrection and the implications and total import that it carries for we, his followers. Add to all that then the ritual, the traditions, the incredible hymns and the requisite family gatherings and Easter becomes far and away the most important week of the year...unless you're a non-Catholic living in Honduras. Turns out the Christians of the evangelical persuasion here in Hondie, in their myopic effort to set themselves firmly juxtapose to the Catholic Church have simply gone overboard and done away with anything that smacks of liturgy, tradtition or observance. It can be frustrating and maddening but more than anything it just saddens me and I've taken to ignoring the holidays or passing them in my own unique way.
In that the major businesses, banks, schools and government offices are closed from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday most people here, Catholics included use Holy Week as their Summer Vacation week. There are trips to the beaches, the mountains, the islands and parties in the evenings. For our part we took the kids on a couple of day trips, Good Friday was spent with 32 of our favorite kids at La Sirena and yesterday we took 13 kids hiking in the national forest and then swimming in the nearby river while we waited for Konrad's parents to start their canopy tour. It certainly wasn't the traditional way to spend the holiday but hey, we're Protestants in Honduras which means we're nothing if not anti-tradition.
tati holding up the mountain for us as we pass through
the boys are highly impressed
the stragglers
nango, soplo y konrad

Happy Easter.