23-25 December, 1998
After our arrival in San Salvador, El Salvador, we found accommodations and
stayed the night. Thinking of what lied ahead and organizing our priorities for
the days ahead was for most on our minds. The next morning we took a taxi to
another airport where the Avalon 450 is stored. Being unfamiliar with the area,
we again relied with the care of the local Aero club. The San Salvador Aero Club
is well organized and we were able to find a secure parking area while we were
back in the U.S. getting medical supplies.
We accomplished immigrations and customs and filed an international flight
plan for Honduras. Accurate pilot weather is not always available, so the safe
bet is to have plenty of fuel and keep checking pilot weather every hour, and
always have a way "out". Our flight was uneventful to Tegucigalpa,
As we arrived in Tegucigalpa, we were met by the Aero club and prepared for
our next missions. We brought aircraft spare parts in for the Honduran Aero
Club. Simple things like sealers, tires, aircraft wire, and filters are
expensive and difficult to obtain.
The weather reports showed a cold front coming in from the Caribbean and
sure enough the winds started picking up to 30 mph in town and the airport. The
aircraft was tied down securely and we decided to plan a trip to an orphanage
with the help of Mr. Jack Midence of the Cornerstone foundation via land route.
We set out the next morning for the town of Guaimaca, some 45 miles distant.
After passing several bad sections of road and a bridge that was washed out, we
arrived at a small orphanage of 18 children. Most of the children had been
orphaned by a variety of reasons. It is tough for these organizations to make
ends meet. What this group does is to make farming their principal source of
food, of which all the children have their "duties". Barbara had
wrapped Christmas gifts and the kids were most appreciative that "Santa"
had come to their house. We were reminded again of the security problem that the
farm and surrounding communities face on a daily basis. There are some bands of
thugs that prey on the local villagers and farms. When the economy of any
country is on the line, and people are suffering, people do some desperate acts
to survive. The orphans in this town of Guaimaca, were locked up in their house,
behind steel bars at 4:30 p.m.! We were advised to be off the roads before
sundown to reduce the chance of confrontation and getting mugged. We left
feeling sad that situations exist like this in the near 21st century.
On the other hand, for a moment, we also saw happiness in these children's
faces and that made us feel wonderful
Ed and Barbara
P.S. Merry Christmas All !!