I mentioned the trip to Honduras at the end of my previous post. We landed in Tegucigalpa, Honduras with no dramas. A couple of guys from the University were there to meet us, which was a nice touch.
When getting foreign currency from an ATM, I would suggest you ignore anything Debra Lilley tells you to do. Her expert advice lead me to draw out the equivalent of $10 US, rather than the $100 US I planned to get. We couldn’t even pay for our food.
When we got to the hotel, the first thing I did was throw a whole bunch of clothes into the hotel laundry service. Paying someone to do my washing made me feel a bit like a class traitor, but my previous abortive attempts at drying wet clothes in my hotel room left me with little choice. Having your boxer shorts returned individually wrapped in cellophane bags is quite funny, but paying $57 US for the privilege is not. At least I don’t smell like wet dog anymore…
Apart from the washing service, Honduras seems to be a pretty cheap place from a UK/US tourist perspective. On the first evening we went out to eat at a local place, scouted out by Melanie Caffrey, which was really cool. The bill for the group (about 10 people), including drinks and a tip came to about $110 US.
The following day it was conference time. We were all shipped to the University in a minibus, where we settled in for the day (10:00-19:00). The audience was a little tricky, since it was predominantly IT students, who weren’t necessarily Oracle focussed. Thanks to the expert tuition of Joel Perez and Ronald Vargas, I was able to introduce myself in Spanish, which was a good ice breaker. You don’t want to know how much time they spent coaching Debra and I at dinner the night before. Joel came to my presentation and videoed my attempt at Spanish. When I get the URL I’ll post it here.
People were very shy about asking questions in front of the whole group, but after both presentations I got some 1-to-1 questions. It’s always nice when that happens.
The next day Debra, Sheeri and I took a whistle-stop tour of Tegucigalpa using a taxi. The driver only spoke Spanish, so it was up to Sheeri, our translator extraordinaire, to organize everything. It was a brief tour, but really enjoyable. Having a day off flying and presenting was a blessing. I was starting to feel like I was losing the plot, but I feel much better now.
You can see some photos from Honduras here.
Big thanks to Jonathan and the rest of the Honduras gang for looking after us and the speaker gift, and thanks to the Oracle ACE Director program for helping to make this happen.
In a couple of hours we will be flying to Costa Rica, which is the last stop before I return to Birmingham.
PS. Drivers in Honduras like to use their horns a lot. I think the horn must be pressed every 3 seconds or the car stalls…