I believe that everyone who lives in a country like ours should visit a third world country some time in their life. It may not be fun, but it is certainly an eye-opening experience. You can see how the rest of the world lives and how fortunate we are to live in a developed country.
I had my own experience of this type in June 2006 when I visited Honduras. I live on a farm that takes in exchange students from all over the world so they can gain agricultural experience. They normally stay from 6 months to a year on the farm. Five years ago we had an exchange student working for us who was from Honduras. She was a great worker and gained a wealth of knowledge from her stay here. My parents stayed in touch with her and several years later she sent us an email saying she was going to be married that June. We were very happy for her and we decided to travel to Tegucigalpa, Honduras to attend her wedding.
Our trip to Honduras was not very enjoyable. Our first flight from Minneapolis was delayed so that we missed our connecting flight in Miami. The next flight wasn’t leaving until 2 a.m. and we had to find a hotel to stay at until our flight left. Eventually we made it on the plane and were headed for Honduras. The city of Tegucigalpa is located in a valley with mountains surrounding it, so its airport is not very accessible. As we were descending into the valley on our small plane, the pilot suddenly pulled up and accelerated out of the valley so that we didn’t hit the mountains. He made it onto the runway on his second try and everyone on the plane cheered and applauded as we finally made a safe landing. The final, and worst problem we had that day was when we went to fetch our bags from the carousel. My bag turned up right away but my mom and dad’s bags didn’t. My grandfather who had come with us only had a carry-on bag. My parents argued with the staff but eventually had to accept the fact that their bags had been lost.
We spent the next two days exploring the city and its surrounding area with our former exchange student. As we drove through the city, we saw many differences between the culture of Honduras and our culture. One major difference was in how most people drove. No one used turn signals and they drove fast and erratically. Crime is also a huge problem. There were guards armed with shotguns standing outside of every restaurant and store in the city. Most houses had 10-foot walls topped with razor wire surrounding the property. As we drove through the country we saw plenty of beautiful scenery. The views of the mountains surrounding Tegucigalpa were stunning.
Several days after we arrived it was already time for the wedding. We had a great time at the reception; my grandfather was the first one on the dance floor after the bride and groom. We also enjoyed visiting with the other wedding guests. Fortunately my parents’ bags were found, but not until the day before we left. Our trip back to the U.S. was mostly uneventful and easy.
Overall we had a great time in Honduras. It was very interesting to see how that part of the world lives and what the country is like. As with most third world countries it has its problems but it can also have its treasures.
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