Guns On the Streets of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras

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In El Salvador such view isn’t anything special. Every bigger shop or office shows this message for anybody willing to enter with any weapon. Furthermore, if the business is big enough, there will be an armed guard nearby. Small grocery shops cannot afford that so they are usually protected by metal grating. Some businesses have precautions going even further, like in motorcycle parts store in Guatemala City where the cashier was hidden behind two way mirror. DSC00788 Small pharmacy somewhere in small town La Liberdad in El Salvador. Such type of gun is the most popular one in Central America. You can spot a lot of machine guns in Mexico, but they are mainly owned by soldiers and policemen and here it looks like everybody can buy a shogun or hire somebody who has one. You can get used to the sight of weapons, but getting over the way people handle guns is something different. I’ve spent only six weeks in the army and that was more than enough to learn the weapon savoir-vivre forever. The owner treats his gun like it’s not armed or like a toy. I never saw any shells on them and I’m not positive if those rifles are armed, but I’m certain about one thing. Most of those guards look like nice guys, unwilling to aim such gun at anybody. I guess that most of them are just scarecrows. DSC01503 Karaoke and billiard bar, San Salvador. Gang wars and violence are everyday stories of Latin America. Thankfully traveller can easily escape dark reality and hide himself in typical tourists places. I’ve travelled across Latin America for nine months now and I’ve never seen anything that could concern me. You can often hear about tourists being robbed and luckily acts of violence are sparser but still, it’s always better to stay far away from troubles. Paying attention to your surroundings, smiling and using your commons sense are the best methods.

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