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Forget 3 oz Shampoos, El Salvador Airport Has Armed Militia

The airport in El Salvador’s capital of San Salvador is the major transfer hub for connecting flights throughout Central America. With a long history of drug trafficking and subsequent related violence, the Government of El Salvador is aggressively tackling this issue. There are giant signs declaring their lack of tolerance, strict penalties and prosecution if found drug trafficking. Heavily armed military and police with drug sniffing dogs pass through crowds both inside and outside security.

Security of this magnitude certainly comes at a premium. The man-power, dog training, ammunition, firearms, uniforms and holsters all add up.

In order to reduce costs, sometimes corners need to be cut.

That must explain the plastic zip-tie securing the nylon holster housing on the firearm of one of the officials. I’m not too sure how that may affect access to drawing his weapon in an emergency, but at least his dog looked well fed!

 

Written by Gaby Hosea. . 3 Comments
Categories: Flight Stories

Tour de Hospitals: Riots, Starvation, and Rejuvenation

One week ago, I was skiing in some of the finest powder of the season. Today, I landed in the 4th city on my Tour de Hospitals a la Central America.

First stop was Tegucigalpa, Honduras, the morning after riots broke out and hundreds of tear gas bombs were shot into hostile crowds of angry teachers. I was immediately reassured by Gustov, my taxi driver, that there would not be rioting during my stay as the local police had already used up their supply of tear gas and there was no more money to purchase more. Crisis one, averted!

My next flight landed me in La Ceiba, Honduras, a small “pueblo” populated with peaceful people, which presented me with an even greater challenge…FOOD. I stayed at Palma Real “resort”. My taxi driver, Darlon, assured me it was the finest resort in all of La Ceiba. Bravo to the photographer and web designer for this local. The reality was 1/16th the quality publicized.

I began a two-day impromptu fast.

The food was not even close to edible. Thank goodness, the sound of crashing waves was louder than my grumbling tummy!

San Pedro Sula, Honduras was my third stop. A night at the Intercontinental Real was just what I needed. Fantastic customer service and a buffet that made me want to dance. The reports of non- violent protest throughout this city were front-page news in the national paper the day of my arrival. Once again, I saw none of it. I was, however, entertained by the volume and variety of inflatable pools and floaties being sold at major intersections throughout the city.

This morning, I arrived in Belize City; a melting pot of Caribbean, Latin culture and the only English speaking country in Latin America. Even the drive from the city was a feast for the eyes. Thick green vegetation, dotted with colorful tropical blooms. What a lovely place to recharge my laptop for the night!

 

Written by Gaby Hosea. . Leave a comment
Categories: Travel Stories

70 Countries and Counting – The 12 Hour Tourist

Over the past several years, I have had the distinct pleasure of “previewing” the world. Nearly 70 countries later, my bucket list continues to grow. My wanderlust, never quenched is more insatiable, as my air miles continue to accumulate. I have perfected the art of the 12 hour tourist and find sincere delight in experiences both big and small.

Although the events which typically catapult me onto the jet way are generally categorized as medical or travel catastrophes by the evacuees, for me it’s an opportunity. I have a chance to change a situation gone wrong and deliver a positive resolution. Medical expertise may be the reason I am contacted but simple gestures are what make the difference.

In every corner of the world I am continually reminded that life comes at you fast. An accident or illness can knock you flat on your back and through determination, perseverance, a splash of humility and a large helping of laughter, we manage to survive and grow even stronger.

I hope this blog will become a resource of useful travel tips. Welcome to a forum filled with funny antidotes to the calamities of life and an opportunity to share stories of adventure, culture and people who touch our lives.

Welcome to Rescue Nurse International’s blog!

Written by Gaby Hosea. . 1 Comment
Categories: Rescue Nurse News