Meet Maria, my Honduran host

Author’s note: This post is part of my series on my recent trip to Honduras. To read past posts on Honduras, click here.

Perhaps the best thing about my volunteer trip to Honduras was the home stay. Going into the trip I was a bit worried. I had no idea what to expect. Would the family be nice? Would I be able to communicate enough in Spanish? Would I feel comfortable inside a strangers house for a week? And would I be able to sleep at night?

Memories of barking dogs and restless roosters from a previous home stay in Guatemala swam around my head. I had to be honest. I was nervous.

I also had no idea what to expect of the town I’d be living in for a week. I knew nothing about La Ceiba, a port town along the coast of Honduras. All I knew is what I’d read in Lonely Planet. That it was the third largest town and described as rather ugly. I also understood that it was probably going to be a bit more dangerous than Guatemala and that I probably wouldn’t be doing much exploring if any on my own. Thus, it was even more important that I liked my host family as I would be spending every evening inside the house with them and as we all know, nights can be long.


Looking out across the street from Gloria and Hugo’s house in La Ceiba.

I arrived just in time for dinner on Sunday night and Gloria and her husband Hugo were waiting. As I stepped out of the car to greet them, I was welcomed by an enormous smile and instantly I knew I would be in very good hands.


The neighbors across the street. Unfortunately I didn’t explore the street at all as it wasn’t safe to walk around off the main drag which was a block away to the left. Heading right wasn’t safe per Gloria so unfortunately I never checked it out.

Throughout the week, I got to really know Gloria and Hugo who welcomed me graciously into their home and their lives. I met their family, enjoyed three delicious meals a day with them and they spoke and listened patiently to my basic level Spanish. Their warmth, hospitality and infectious laughter and smiles brought joy to my soul and was extremely refreshing. In a country where people don’t have much, they were more than happy with their lot in lives and their happiness taught me a lesson to be thankful for what you have.


Looking down Gloria and Hugo’s street from the balcony.


Gloria giving me one of her warm smiles.


The patio.


Gloria in her favorite place: The kitchen cooking up a tasty meal.


The living room.


My bedroom. There is no AC and it is very very hot and humid. Thankfully there is a fan which was on full blast at night. Honduras also does not have hot water. Even though it was hot there, it was still hard to get used to an icy cold shower every day. The things we take for granted!


Gloria’s backyard and where she spends most of her day doing laundry.


View of the neighbors house next door.



Despite the unattractiveness of the street, the view surrounding La Ceiba from Gloria’s balcony was breathtaking. Here are the mountains at sunset.



Me and Gloria saying goodbye.


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