Tuesday, August 31, 2010

That's some name for a new town

In 1578, the Spanish founded the city, La Real Villa de San Miguel de Heredia de Tegucigalpa.   Today the city is simply known as Tegucigalpa or 'Tegus'.

I prefer the modern name...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

'In search of Mel Zelaya' or 'What Tegucigalpa could be, but never will'

I'm in Santo Domingo searching for Comandante Mel, but so far no luck.  Where is he hiding?  What is he afraid of?  Well actually, I am in Santo Domingo, but really do not care to see Mel.  If per chance, I saw him in a restaurant or shop, I'm sure I would give him a piece of my mind and that would not be good...

Having been in Santo Domingo now for a few days, I have a couple of observations.  First, and foremost, this place is just too nice for Mel.  A more fitting locale for Mel's retirement haven is Port au Prince.

Apart from that, I have really been impressed with the city.  The colonial section has been painstakingly restored and as a result, tourism is booming.  The city is non-threatening and there are tourist police everywhere.  In Honduras, there are tourist police in some areas, but you never actually see them.  They are there in name only.

Not only is it safe, it is relatively clean.  Hey, that's a novel idea.  I wonder why they never thought about that in Honduras!  You know, putting trash into trash cans on the sidewalk instead of simply throwing it whereever and everywhere.

I guess it takes a certain national pride to restore a nation's patrimony and to keep a city clean.  If only Honduras had pride about some other than soccer...

Monday, August 09, 2010

Beware of that Gringo you meet at the local expat watering hole...

Below is a BBC article published on BBC's website on Aug 4.

Panama 'serial killer' case: more bodies recovered

Mr Holbert was arrested in Nicaragua.   Panamanian authorities say they have recovered three more bodies on the property of a US man accused of murdering fellow American expatriates.  The bodies of a man, a woman and a child were found buried in the grounds of a hostel owned by William Holbert in the Bocas del Toro archipelago.  Two other bodies were found there last month, sparking a search for Mr Holbert and his wife.

They were arrested in Nicaragua last week after fleeing Panama.  Prosecutors say Mr Holbert, 30, has confessed to killing five people to steal their money and property, and has been giving them information about where to find the bodies.

"He has explained what he did, how he did it and why he did it", assistant prosecutor Angel Calderon told the Associated Press. His wife, Laura Reese, 27, has also been charged over the murders. Mr Holbert is also the main suspect in the disappearance of two Panamanians.

Murder in paradise

The case began when the authorities found the bodies of a man and a woman buried behind Mr Holbert's hostel on a small island in Bocas del Toro, a Caribbean archipelago popular with tourists and US expats.

The woman has been identified as Cheryl Lynn Hughes, from St Louis, Missouri, who had been living in Panama for 10 years but has been missing since March. The man was identified as Bo Icelar, who has been missing since November and is thought to be from New Mexico.

Prosecutors allege Mr Holbert befriended Ms Hughes and Mr Icelar by posing as a potential investor before murdering them and taking over their properties - a hotel and a house.

Mr Holbert and his wife went on the run after the bodies were discovered, but were arrested by Nicaraguan police as they tried to enter the country from Costa Rica, and extradited to Panama in chains.

The three bodies found on Tuesday are thought to belong to another US man, Mike Brown, and his wife and son. Prosecutors allege Mr Holbert - known to his neighbours as "Wild Bill" - befriended Mr Brown before shooting him and his family in the head after discovering they had a lot of money in bank accounts.

The couple were using false documents in Panama and living under the aliases William and Jean Cortez, police said.  Mr Holbert is also wanted in the US for allegedly selling a house that did not belong to him in the state of North Carolina, as well as for alleged car theft.