I have only been in Central America a few days, but one of the pieces of advice that is starting to stick is:”Don’t go out at night.” This is often amended to “Don’t go out at night alone” or “Don’t go out at night looking confidant” and I am sure there are endless other tweakings.
A noche Central America is a whole other beast. The sun maddened locals reclaim their streets from bloated tourists who stay indoors to stuff their faces with even more Plantanos.
The woman who you saw at lunchtime whittling away on a coconut for hours on end is now a brazen hussy who wants nothing less than your cojones in her junk. The prostitutes that have approached me in pitch black night were still too ugly to look at and I find myself quickly crossing the street when they approach.
While I am tooling up and down the Caribbean coast it should come as no surprise that I am meeting a lot of Caribbean people. And I mean RASTAS.
As I stroll down quiet beaches I hear “chirp chirp” and “brrrrraaaah” cat calls coming down from high in the palm trees where young dread-locked boys give me the universal sign of two fingers to the lips. At night their approaches and undulant noises become more urgent because they clearly have some drug pimp that they have to settle up with at the end of the night.
The most striking thing about being alone at night is that I am the only one alone. People travel in packs here and there are many cliques, none of which I belong to.
So for now, my nights end early with a paperback novel about life as a dog and ¼ Xanax for that good 12 hour sleep.
The sun will shine soon enough.