Honduras celebrates 200 years as an independent country this year! I still remember when I had a chance to participate in the bicentennial celebration in 1976 in the USA. I am not a US citizen, but I was there for the US bicentennial as part of the tall ship parade up the Hudson River on July 4, 1976. My dear dad had a friend who owned a yacht and invited me to the celebration. My luck was that a prerequisite to participate in this parade was that half of the crew in the yachts had to be under 20 years old. I was celebrating my 18th birthday less than a month before, and therefore was an asset as a crewmember. The yacht was the Sayula II, a magnificent Swan 65 built by Nautor in Finland in 1993.
I know that I am wandering off my keyword phrase refers to the Honduras Bicentenial Celebration, planned for this year. However, if you allow me, I will share my experience at that important milestone for the United States of America that I had the privilege to participate in. The Regatta departed from Plymouth, England, and had 4 stages. The first was from Plymouth, England to Tenerife, in the Canary Islands. The second was from Tenerife to Bermuda. The Third from Bermuda to Newport, Rhode Island, in the USA. From Newport, they were to sail down Long Island Sound to New York Harbor. Finally, after the bicentennial parade up the Hudson River, they would return to Europe from New York Harbor on their last leg.
The yacht I was on was the Sayula II. This yacht participated in the first Whitbread Round the World Race in 1973. Believe it or not, it was the Mexican Yacht that won the race over all! We joined the regatta in Bermuda for the third leg. U a proud to announce that we were the first of over 300 yachts and tall ships to cross the finish line. Part of the crew that was on this regatta were also part of the Whitbread Round the World Regatta. Incidentally, this race is now the Volvo Ocean Race, the most trying sailing race in the World!
After spending some time docked at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club in Hamilton, Bermuda, we joined the race towards Newport. I had never heard of Newport, Rhode Island. But just about fell on my back when I visited the imposing mansions that were used only two or three weeks every year by their millionaire owners. From Newport, we sailed down the coast and spent the night in Greenwich, Connecticut. Then sailed into New York Harbor and participated in the parade that took place on July 4, 1996, celebrating 200 years of the USA as an independent country!
Back to Honduras, I hate to confess that I am not aware of the plans for the Honduras Bicentennial celebration. I have not heard any news yet, but I am already asking around. Personally, I would love to see an all-out Central American Celebration. Imagine all 5 Central American Countries joining in on one big celebration. After all, Honduras, like the rest of Central America, considers their independence to date to September 15, 1821. It would only make sense that they all jump on the same wagon to celebrate. The story of the independence of New Spain in rather complex. Spain did not acknowledge the independence of the colony until December 1836.
Mexico had their bicentennial celebration as an independent country back in 2010, which coincides with the start of the insurrection in the town of Dolores Hidalgo, Guanajuato. The popular tourist destination of San Miguel de Allende. The same is true for the cities of Guanajuato and Queretaro are where the heart were the independence movement grew from. As far as I know, there were no real independence battles fought in Central America. Whatever the case, I am sure that the country will put on a hell of a show for the Honduras Bicentennial Celebration