Toncontin Farewell

On the day we left Tegucigalpa (see the entry titled “Deciding Moments”) I decided to film the trip from the hotel to the airport. The resulting footage isn’t any better than handheld 8mm movies taken from a moving vehicle could be expected to be, but the street scenes are representative of what we saw each day going to and from our classroom site.

Every day we drove past the city’s only traffic light, installed only a year earlier. The city’s traffic had a much less regimented, more fluid flow than US streets. At one point in this movie, our truck is overtaken by two cars, one of which passes us as the other passes both us and the first car. It has much of the same feeling (with less congestion) as driving in Souzhou, China, at least as I experienced it in 2002.

The movie includes some footage from Toncontin airport itself. A single-engined aircraft takes off; note how quickly it is off the ground, because the next aircraft is a PanAm DC-6 that lumbers down the runway, keeps lumbering, and finally, away off in the distance, rises slowly as it passes over the end of the runway…and the dropoff that waits there.’

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