I'm only 5'1", but suddenly I feel like a tall person. I kind of like it. I feel more authoritative. All of my life I've stared into people chests, had to block the sun from my eyes when I looked up to talk to them, and felt claustrophobic in a crowd because I couldn't see in front of myself. Now I've become an average, or even, dare I say it, tall person.
People are very small in Honduras. I often stand eye-to-eye with the men and positively tower over the women, especially the older people. Oh, of course, there are tall people here, too, but the majority of the people are much smaller than North Americans. Especially the poor people.
I suppose it is partly in the Mayan genes, but mostly, I think, it's from life-long malnutrition. When those same people move to the U.S., they have giant children. El Jefe has a nephew, born to the good life in the U.S. He was taller than me when he was 10 years old. Now he's 15 and almost 6 feet tall. El Jefe's mother is about 4'9".