First of all, we saw lots of cattle grazing, and we stayed across the road from dairy cattle on pasture. I'm sure my companions didn't at all mind when I yelled 'cows!' every time we saw them on our hours of driving. (Right, travel friends?)
I'll tell you when we didn't see cattle ... on our way back to the airport, we took a highway we hadn't yet - the Coastal Highway. This word 'highway' was misleading to us, because ... I want you to imagine the absolute worst dirt road you've been on. Now multiply that by ten. Now add rocks, creeks, and desolation. No houses, no farms, no gas stations, nothing. Now add that after you've been on it for 30 minutes of the hour it's going to take, you see workers and think - maybe it's paved from here on out, which would be great, seeing as how it's getting awfully close to our return flight times! We saw that it was ... a bridge outage.
"Oh no," I said. "We're going to have to turn around a find a new way!"
"No! Look over there," Aimee said. She was driving. She turned toward a side road and pointed out a wooden bridge. "That must be the temporary bridge."
"Can cars go over that?" I said.
"Are there any tire tracks?" Annie asked.
"Just go really fast!" I said. Aimee gunned it. I figured that if we were going to crash through it, I wanted to get it over with as fast as possible. It held! We later agreed that after all of the jungle hiking, rock sliding, tubing, Mayan-skeleton-sighting, termite-eating ... that was the scariest moment of the trip.
I saw a dairy product I've never seen here -
Chocolate milk energy drink fortified with vitamins and minerals? Yes!
We also checked out banana and pineapple plants. To plant a pineapple, you cut off the top and place it on the ground. Not even in the ground. Little roots come out of it, sort of like potatoes. (Not in Michigan so much ...)
As usual in Central American countries, fluid milk was not super popular, but frozen was. In San Ignacio, we tried the local ice cream. I had Oreo. It was not Oreo for real, but there was a cookie in there. No complaints from us!
In Placencia, we went to Tutti Frutti, which had rave reviews. It's a gelato place, and it was absolutely packed both days we went in. I asked the guy working if he was the owner or the worker. He said that he was the owner and the worker - like most small businesses!
He said he was originally from France, so when I left I used my best 'au revoir'. He kindly said 'au revoir' back. We didn't need French though ... no matter the country, no matter the language, milk and sugar always go together.
This is truly one of the scariest sounds I've ever heard coming from animals. Howler monkeys! We could hear them from far away, and we could stand right underneath their trees. Chilling sound - as my friend said, it sounds just like the soundtrack for a horror movie.
I came back to my mostly silent and calm cattle - until they get out ... then their sounds rival the monkeys!
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