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Reality Check: Island Life Has Limitations

So I know I make Roatan sound like it’s all rainbows and unicorns, right? Well here’s your balancing article, all you naysayers…

We are currently on Day 7 of no internet at home. You want to know why? Here’s the rundown:

  • Tuesday evening: internet is no longer working. Router seems confused and keeps blinking lights at us, but never the correct ones. 
  • Wednesday morning: I call the internet company for help. I speak to someone whose English is less than stellar and – simply because I’m lazy – I don’t speak in Spanish. But we come to the conclusion that an order has been submitted for a technician to come to the house. 
  • Thursday morning: no technician yet, so I call again. Apparently my amigo was confused by my Boston accent and no order was submitted. Now kicking myself for not having confirmed what was apparently only MY conclusion en español. “Please submit the order now and can you tell them it’s been two days?” “Yes, ma’am, someone will be there within 24 hours.” “Will they call me first?” “Yes, ma’am.”
  • Friday: crickets. But I’m out of the house anyway so it’s a moot point since I can’t let him into the house to fix it, and Lina has yet to learn how to unlock the doors (luckily?). But I kind of thought if they called I could race home to let them in. 
  • Saturday morning: “Heyyyy guys, I’m still waiting for a technician to come to my house.” “Oh, he should be there soon, so keep your phone by you.” Soon. That’s akin to mañana. Which means someday after today. 
  • Sunday: no technicians on Sunday. 
  • Monday: “Heyyyy guys, I’m still waiting for a technician to come to my house.” “Oh, it’s a holiday, so no technicians today!” Whoops. I forgot. 
  • Tuesday: “Heyyyy guys, I’m still waiting for a technician to come to my house. Please?” “Maybe he can come today.” I’m still optimistic! There are a few hours left in the day yet!

C’est la vie. We’re not dying, I have internet on my phone (which is where I’ve typed this whole thing), and there is ample wifi in West End. This is not the end of the world, although it does make my whole “work from home” thing more challenging! Of course, if I’d remembered that yesterday was a holiday I wouldn’t have waited at home all day for my mystery technician to arrive. Alas, I forgot, so I’ve built up quite a number of Word documents – which luckily don’t require the internet – and I will post or email them as soon I am back on the grid. Sometime mañana. 

In the meantime, I’ve watched Lina try to chomp a fly that’s been taunting her for the last 15 minutes, so there’s that…

BONUS: We also haven’t had hot water since Thursday, though that is being actively worked on. So, um, cold showers are great, right? At least that’s what I keep telling myself as the air escapes my lungs every time I try to bathe. Which, FYI, I haven’t done as regularly, guys, so you may want to steer clear of my house for a while. Besides, I have no internet so you would be bored if you came over. It’s not like there’s a beautiful beach or a relaxing hammock nearby or anything. 

Hey, does a dip in the ocean count as bathing?

Happy Tuesday, all!

A Day in the Life on Roatan

Have you ever wondered what daily life is like here in Roatan? I know you have, because I get emails and messages from you guys all the time asking about the mundane stuff: the ins and outs and all the little details. You want to know how I fill my hours and what makes this place so special.

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Semana Santa in Roatan

What is “Semana Santa” anyway?

No, friends, it has nothing to do with Santa Claus. In most of Latin America, the end of Holy Week, or Easter Week, is a festival time. Most countries offer national holidays for at least Good Friday, if not other days as well. Most schools are closed and families take advantage of the opportunity to celebrate together. Continue reading

How to Move to Roatan: Minimizing and Getting Rid of All the Stuff

In case you missed the other parts in this series on How to Move to Roatan, here’s Finding Housing, Working Abroad, Families With Children, and Safety Concerns.

People contact me all the time asking for advice on how to minimize their “stuff.” When considering an international move, understanding what is important and what is simply taking up space makes the transition so much easier. Here’s the best advice I can offer you, which I originally wrote for The Huffington Post on March 13, 2015.

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Roatan Insider Tips: Transportation Around the Island

So you’re coming to Roatan and want to know how you’ll get around the island. Here’s your breakdown on all things transportation whether you’re visiting or moving to Roatan.

Taxis on Roatan

Cabs are numbered and registered so you clearly know which vehicles are taxis. They are all white, 4-door cars with their registration numbers on the side doors. Taxi fares are set – for the most part. Here’s the caveat: you can either take a private taxi or a colectivo. If you take a private taxi your costs will be higher. If you are taking a colectivo, the car will stop periodically to pick up other passengers so don’t be surprised if you stop several times along the way for pick-ups or drop-offs. You also may end up holding someone’s child or bag as you squeeze in together. The more the merrier! Continue reading

Roatan Insider Tips: Mosquitoes, Malaria, and Dengue

People often ask me if they should take anti-malarial medication while visiting Roatan. While Dengue Fever and Malaria can be contracted here, both are quite rare. I did have Dengue Fever last year, which was caused by these “turdwad” mosquitoes (watch the video). I had been here for two years when I got it, so I’m going to venture to say those of you visiting for a week have an unbelievably low chance of getting either disease.

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