Pancakes, Beach Bars And Fish

We left the boat early, to beat the heat of the day in town. I wanted to get some more produce, since the things we’d bought previously were so good. I also wanted to take advantage of the fact that Michelle, at Rudy’s, made pancakes. Since the smoothie we’d had the day before was so great, her pancakes had to be delicious!

Michelle was just arriving to open for the day as we tied to the pier. She chatted happily with us, while opening, making coffee for some local regulars and preparing our pancakes. They were, as expected, terrific! I know pancakes aren’t difficult, or necessarily special, but it was a nice treat to enjoy them by the water’s edge with such a friendly person. And, I didn’t have to put any additional heat into our boat to make them!

If you find yourself in West End, go to Rudy’s and see Michelle! Her personality, pancakes and skills with a blender will ensure more than one visit to the inviting smoothie (and more) shack.

On our way to the produce stand, I did a quick bit of shopping. The store we went into was crammed full of things, but Scott managed to spot painted bird feathers that had been framed. We thought them unusual and different, and chose one painted with a parrot and and iguana.

I then went into Rusty Fish, a shop selling items made from stone, bottles, metal and such. All things are made from local artists, using recycled or found materials. I chose two fish made from a stone that is locally known as Island Jade or Honduras jade.

It’s actually a type of Serpentine, and is a softer stone, making it an excellent material for artwork and jewelry. Island Jade is found on the hill tops of both Roatan and mainland Honduras, and comes in many colors. Some pieces we saw had four or five colors in just one stone.

The Rusty Fish had both carvings and jewelry made from the stone, displaying the work of eleven local stone artists. They also had many other neat things made from all sorts of materials, but we have limited space onboard and showed restraint. With full bellies, and a backpack full of produce and trinkets, we headed back to Sea Life for a break from the evil, mid-day heat.

Our afternoon plan was to dinghy over to some nearby beach bars. Scott didn’t want to go, as the heat and humidity were winning out over his want for a cold drink in the sand. I reminded him that we’d been talking of going to these places since first anchoring here, and if we planned to head for French Harbor the next day, this was our last chance.

We made our way to shore, and tied up near our first stop, Tita’s Pink Seahorse.

Yes, this place is open for business! We wandered past the pile of palm fronds waiting to be burned, and around the tarps. Inside, it was a typical tiki/beach-bar-type place, crammed with various “mementos” hanging from the ceiling and on the walls. We immediately liked it.

From behind the bar, Niki greeted us with a big smile….and delicious drinks! I tried a “Monkey La La,” (a frozen drink, much like a mudslide with banana added) and Scott had a killer rum punch. She also makes a great mojito! We now liked the place even more.

Niki had grown up in Guanaja, where we started our bay island cruising. We chatted with her about how much we enjoyed the island, and looked forward to going back. The bar was full of locals and tourists who were also taking a break from the mid-day sweltering heat. We all agreed that Tita’s was a perfect place to hide.

Just outside on the beach, some local school children were having a phys-ed class. Scott and I were surprised that the class wasn’t held closer to dawn or dusk. The kids were doing lunges in the sand, running sprints and practicing volleyball skills. They appeared less than happy about it, and we could feel their pain from behind our big glasses of cold drinks (sorry kids).

Feeling like we should give the other nearby beach bar equal time, we thanked Niki and her Aunt Tita (who is the owner) and made our way just down the beach to Ronnie’s Barefoot Beach Bar. Unfortunately, Ronnie’s didn’t seem to be as popular with either locals or tourists, as it was completely empty. We weren’t even sure that they were open, until a woman came from under a nearby palapa to wait on us.

While we were deciding whether to return to our boat, or to Tita’s, after our drinks, a local man came up to the bar from the beach and ordered a beer. He’d just come back from fishing, and invited us to see his catch. Back on the pier,  we watched as he started to scale and clean the fish.

Kevin and a friend had fished in 800 feet of water, using just hand lines, no rods. They take turns pulling the lines in, as it’s quite a job at those depths. He asked if we’d like to buy one of the fish. Scaled, cleaned and ready to cook…absolutely!

As Kevin worked on a fish for us, some local dogs played on the pier and in the sand nearby, hoping to get a treat from Kevin. Tired from wrestling with the other dogs, one took a break…on Scott’s foot.

Kevin bagged our fish, and we thanked him and headed back to Sea Life, glad that we’d pushed ourselves to come out in the afternoon heat. It’s now on to French Harbor for us, but first here are some more photos from our day of pancakes, beach bars and fish (and a few more of our surroundings in West End).

“Shells Sink, Dreams Float. Life’s Good On Our Boat!”