It is awfully hard to believe that just a week ago we were saying goodbye to one home, and braving the icy mountain roads to begin our journey to another. Our few days in between driving and flying south were jam packed with quick goodbyes, long car rides, and a whole lot of swelling in my bum leg. It was a painful journey - to say goodbye once again to our beloved family and friends, and rush rush rush (as fast as my leg would allow) to pull it all together in time.
Once at the airport, the bum leg was actually a bit of a blessing! Being in a wheelchair got us through the airport faster; we were bumped up in security and got to use the fast lane at customs. We were even so lucky as to get better seats on the plane to Houston, thanks to our friend Rina who just happened to be working the counter for our flight. Incompatible flight times meant spending a night in Houston, which actually turned out to be a good thing - it gave my swollen leg a much needed break. All in all, our migration was less excruciating then it probably could have been, and is making me consider keeping the walking cast to whiz through airports for future flights!
Waiting for us at the airport in Roatán was the home owner, Michael. After so much back-and-forth over email the past few months, it felt like meeting an old friend. And like any good old friend would do, he ensured that our first moments on the island were as they should be - sitting on the beach with a fruity, slushy drink in hand! We enjoyed the cool drinks and breeze in the shade while watching a german shepherd play fetch with a coconut in the sand.
Yup. We're not in Canada anymore. Goodbye piles of snow and cuddling by a fire to keep warm. Hello pristine sand and tank tops!
After that initial few moments of island bliss, we spent a lot of the next two days driving around. Michael showed us the ins and outs of the west side of the island - where to find the best beach, the best grocery store, the best gym, and much more. We also experienced many of our Roatán firsts - our first bug bites (me, of course), our first sun burn (Pete, of course), and our first pasteles (similar to an empanada, but a slightly different Honduran treat). With all our time spent exploring, soaking up all the ambiance and bright sun that this little island has to offer, we developed our first impression as well.
That being: Umm, yeah. This will do nicely. Whether we are spending our time relaxing on a white sand beach or ambling around the gorgeous property Michael has entrusted to us, we can definitely think of worse ways to spend the next six months. It is surreal to think of this tropical paradise as "home", when we were previously only ever exposed to such a place in 1 or 2 week breaks from work - yet always vowing to one day experience day-to-day life as a tropical-islander. What was once seen as an unattainable dream many years ago is now reality. We are living the dream!
Did I mention the ocean views? This is what we will see every morning as we rise from bed:
The next few days will be spent lounging with the above view in order to give my leg a rest - all of this activity has caused a lot of soreness and swelling. It has been agonizing for me to not run and jump in every stretch of blue water we get close to, or explore what view is around the next corner, but I must continue to show restraint in favour of healing. I have begun walking in the house in just shoes, and while this is a big step (pun intended!), being in the unstable outdoors still requires me to wear the walking cast to protect it. Thus, there will be no such running and jumping yet - even casual strolls on soft beaches must be delayed. I am already pushing the limits of what my doctor said was allowable (don't tell him!), and I really don't want to risk re-rupturing and starting over.
So instead, we will enjoy most of our Christmas stretched out on the patio of our new home, in view of the expansive green jungle and crystal blue ocean. Tomorrow we are going to venture into town to find a hotel pool to lounge at, and on Friday we have accepted an invitation to a holiday party by some generous gringo's living on the island. We are excited to make new friends and really begin to enjoy everything that this island has to offer!
Feliz Naviad a todos! We love and miss you all, thanks again for opening your doors to these homeless bums in the past year! xoxo