Showing posts from February, 2018

NIñas de Guatemala, Ciudad Vieja, Guatemala, February 28, 2018

It's my last day in Antigua, so farewell clear blue sky and lovely Volcan Agua-

Fuego is always putting on a show.  Volcan Acatenango is to the right- 

I've said it before but I can't get enough of Arco de Santa Catalina with Iglesia La Merced in the background-

I read that it was possible to visit a chicken bus factory and Sheny knew nothing about it so I booked a $60 tour with Niños de Guatemala. They are a Dutch Guatemalan non profit that, like almost every other NGO, want to make lives better, especially for the children.  They have two elementary schools and one high school that cater to 480 sponsored children.  I'm already a madrina at La Familia de Esperanza so my tour donation would be the only money they would get from me.  They also have Good Hotel, which is nothing like anything Guatemalan.  A beautiful double room costs $136/night-

A suite, complete with loft is $209/night-

Besides the tours, Good Hotel is a fundraiser for the project.  Vases and glasses, made f…

Antigua, Guatemala, February 27, 2018

I'm not sure what happened today but I sort of hit the wall.  I couldn't wait for class to be over; in fact I told Sheny at 11:45 that I'd had enough.  That's never happened before.  Usually before I know it it's noon and class is done.

Sheny has been the most patient teacher on the planet working with me and my Spanish.  I don't know how many times she has had to correct me for making the same mistake over and over and over.  It is possible to take private lessons from her via Skype and I may do that, although I thought I'd do that last time too and never did.  Antiguena Spanish Academy is one of the cheapest; apparently because they have a lot of students all of the time and therefore can keep good teachers and survive.  Even though it's a long way from Marta's, if I come back, I'll still study there.
Walking home was weird too.  I had the feeling that I was done with Antigua and won't be back.  After lunch, I went to the biblioteca where…

Finding the Perfect Homestay in Antigua, Guatemala, February 26, 2018

As my time is winding down in this great city, I am feeling sad.  I love it here but I'm not sure if I'll ever be back.  I've enjoyed living with Marta - my room is nice and so is she.  She's also a fantastic cook and has done an excellent job making healthy meals - lots of meat and vegetables.  She's friendly and likes to visit and help me with my Spanish.  If I came back, I would definitely stay with her again.  Even though it's a half hour walk to school, at 7:30 in the morning the walk is easy because there are few vehicles and fewer pedestrians.  The sun is always shining and the winds are calm.  Coming home is a different story.  Sidewalks and streets are busy and even though it should take more time, it seems faster.  I usually stop at the mercado and wander a bit.  It seems I always have something to check out.

Also, because I'm in a homestay, all meals are prepared, except on Sundays.  This is good and bad.  It's cheap but it hasn't made muc…

La Procession at Santa Ines, Guatemala, February 25, 2018

It's another sunny and warm beautiful day off!  My first stop was down to the mercado to have breakfast.  Lots of locals were eating here so I thought it must be a good place-

The restaurant is just one big room with the kitchen in the corner-

I had desayunos tipicos which is huevos, frijoles, platanos and chorizo.  It was 25Q which is $4.32.  I was surprised that it was that expensive so they must have charged me gringo price-

Afterwards, I walked to Santa Ines to see the alfombras.  They are 'carpets' made out of dyed sawdust.  There are many bags of different colors and lots of different stencils-

Bowls of colored sawdust-

First they make the background-

and do the border-

Then they work on the middle.  They put a stencil down-

and carefully add the sawdust-

to make beautiful images-

Once the procession starts, they will walk right over top the carpets.  This group started at 4 this morning and will finish just in time at 1 pm-