Antigua, Guatemala, February 18, 2018
Sunday, the kitchen is closed at my house - Marta deserves a day off! I walked downtown, looking for a restaurant full of Guatemalans because that way you know that it's good food and it's cheap. I passed numerous restaurants with high prices, made especially for tourists but I knew there had to be what I was looking for somewhere- la comida tipica. I finally asked a server if desayunos was served in the mercado. No, he said, only almuerzo. Liar! I walked to the market and there were numerous places I could eat breakfast. Chorizo sausage costs 66 cents. Two scrambled eggs - 66 cents. Why would one eat anywhere else? I had this fancy looking fruit, yogurt, honey and granola bowl for $3. I'm not sure where the yogurt or granola were but oh well-
After breakfast I wandered around the mercado and bought 5 DVDs, obviously pirated because they cost 86 cents each. They're all Oscar contenders except for Nacho Libre which is supposed to be a funny one about Mexico. Each tienda put the dvd into a player to show me the film on a tv screen and to make sure they spoke English. After my shopping spree, I headed to Filadelfia Coffee Finca on a chicken bus to buy some 'good' coffee. I toured there last year and bought coffee so I'm hoping it's the same. Fuego was up to his old tricks-
By the time I got back, it was lunch and I was back in the mercado. On the top left is ground pork in a patty, the bottom left is torta de carne - basically a hamburger patty and my favorite is on the right - chile rellenos - ground pork mixed with spices rolled into a ball and fried. So good! I also had pico de gallo-
I had my fingernails shellacked and walked home, only to find the beginning of a Lent Procession in the street in front of my home. During the next 5 Sundays of Lent, different neighbouring villages will walk to and around Antigua to commemorate the death of Jesus. These three fellows were the leaders-
There are numerous alfombra - carpets of flowers on the road to praise Jesus. The procession walks right through them-
The pueblos of Santa Catherina de Alejandria and San Pedro Apostal were in charge of presenting the procession this afternoon-
People dressed in purple are called cucuruchos which actually means "pointed hat". Incense shows adoration for Jesus-
Men carry the float of Jesus-
The bands play slow marching music-
The cards that people wear have a number on them indicating when it will be their turn to take over carrying the andas-
Women carry the andas of Maria-
Following Maria is San Juan and Magdalena. They always accompany her-
The last part of the procession - (it's not a parade), is another band, again playing slow and mournful musica-
Quite a few members of Marta's family were here from the ciudad and Antigua to watch the procession from right in front of her house. Marta loves to cook and entertain. I am very lucky!
At 5:30, I met 12 English speaking ex-pats at 6e Avenida and 6e Calle. We went to a restaurant for supper and even though I ordered a stuffed pepper, I got a chile rellenos. It cost 4 times as much as the one I had at noon and tasted 10 times worse! Anyway........ Walking home, the procession was just on its way out of town! What a long afternoon for them!
I had a great weekend. I'm not used to having to do things like school and work. It's kind of crimping my style but it's back to the grind tomorrow!