Things I learned in Roatan: Monkey’s are A**holes & Bring Enough Cash

West Bay Roatan Honduras

We spent a week in Roatan, Honduras scuba diving with an amazing group called Kids Sea Camp. The program brings together families from around the world that are interested in vacationing in tropical locales while their children safely become certified in scuba diving, or receive advance scuba certifications. We have vacationed with them twice before and I have been very impressed with all of the safety measures, accommodations, food, and extracurricular activities that are planned for the kids. But it’s me and no amount of planning will cover the WTF moments.

Typically when I travel I bring some cash, but end up using an ATM on the island at some point. I am not comfortable traveling with large amounts of money and thanks to it being 2016 I felt comfortable in the ability to get cash while in a foreign land. After conferring with our lead person I learned the standard amount to tip the Dive Masters and Captains is approximately $10/tank (or dive). Ok…well this trip we did three dives some days, and my son was with another Dive Master than me…and well I was short the cash I needed…by a lot. No worries, I first hit the boy up and he coughed out $37, then I figure’d I’d hit the ATM at the hotel, except there was no ATM at the hotel. The nearest one was down a dirt road, hang a left, quick right into a small shopping square. Being that I traveled alone I was not super comfy about walking back from the ATM solo with cash, so a lovely gentleman in our group offered to walk with me down to the machine.

Yeah…one problem…I never notified my bank I was going to Honduras. I assumed that since we had zero problem in Costa Rica getting cash, I’d be fine in Honduras. YEAH…never assume. After numerous tries I finally walked away empty handed. Thanks Bill for walking with me though, I very much appreciated it. So now I was short the tips for the dive crew and was forced to bum cash off people I had just met. Way to make a first impression. Thanks Holly for the loan, you were very kind, and I hope you got my check.

Next…being on a small island in a remote part of the world the power grid is not the most reliable. No big deal, I was surrounded by beautiful scenery and waters lapping at sugary sand. The only issue is when the power goes out at 6 pm, and the sun sets at 6:30. Being a diving group we all had very powerful flashlights with us that are used for night diving. We romantically dined by flashlight, and kept positive the power would return at some point. My son retired to our room to read by flashlight, while I did my part to ensure the Pina Coladas didn’t go to waste. I turned in around 11, the power was still out, and our room was becoming as hot as a pig roast in mid July in Alabama. I spent most of the evening tossing and turning due to the heat, and when I awoke at 6:30 am I said to my son, “Wow! I can’t believe the power never came on last night!” And then my son shared with me how damn lazy he can be.

“What are you talking about? The power came on around 1 am.” He responded bewildered.

“No it didn’t, the AC was out all night.” I answered, while my eyes moved from him to the door area where the key should have been inserted into a power unit that helps maintain energy costs. If the key is removed from the device the power to the room is shut off. Guess what was missing.

“Oh, well I was awoken when all the lights I turned on in the living room came on at 2 am (he was sleeping on the pull out couch), and I didn’t want to turn them all off individually so I just took the card out.”

I then repeated over and over, “I love my son. I love my son. I love my son.” so that I didn’t lunge at him and strangle him. Good news for him, I was too tired to exert the energy required.

Finally I learned that white faced capuchin monkey’s are super adorable, soft, furry, agile assholes. We visited Gumbalimba National Park with the group. It was a lovely place with macaws, parrots, foliage, caves, exhibits, zip lines, and monkeys. What could go wrong?

Well my son got shit on by a parrot (shitastrophy’s are not limited to me) and there was a drug addict monkey that helped himself to some items in one of the group member’s bag. The person, we’ll call her “Mary”, was carrying a simple bag, that lacked a zipper, on her shoulder. While photographing the monkeys one sketchy little fuck came up behind her, jumped on her shoulder, reached into her bag and grabbed out a box of Sudafed and a box of Benadryl. The little addict then raced to the top of a tree, before anyone could react, and proceeded to try to sample his new finds.

Well let me tell you, those little monkey hands with their opposable thumbs are FAST. He shredded the box in record time, but couldn’t quite figure out the Sudafed blister pack. Don’t worry little guy, those blister packs are my kryptonite too. We all watched in horror while he nibbled away at the plastic. He then scooted out on a limb and tried to bite his way through the packaging, but one by one he dropped the drugs in frustration. Yup, been there too little guy, good thing you didn’t think to use those razor sharp nails cause that’s really the trick. This is where evolution failed you.

The good news, if he HAD broken through the medication packs, the Sudafed would have been countered by the Benadryl. I mean he may have died since two Sudafed’s can knock an adult male on his ass. Just ask my son’s Dive Master who I gave two too, since he had a cold and I said well if one is good then two are better. He ended up leaving sick that day and was replaced with another Dive Master for the remainder of the week. I’m sure it was just a fluke. But I digress…

In the end some words of wisdom – notify your bank when you travel, parrot poop wipes away easily (especially when it’s not on your shirt), never trust your child with the key to the power of your room, and remember monkey’s may be cute but they are spry little fuckers that are worse than toddlers so don’t be THAT person and make sure your drugs are locked up, or zippered in.

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  1. Liz Henson says:

    We went to Gumbalimba, too – monkey are not just assholes, they are filthy, assholes who steal shit. Those giant scarlet mccaws are viscious. Nature is not our friends. The power went out on us just as we had settled in with our 99 cent margaritas, and logged onto the free wifi, thus resulting in me having to listen to my teenage girls bitch about 3rd world countries like it was my fault.