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Archive for the ‘crazy things that happen in Guate’ Category

There are so many reasons why I love Guatemala. This past week, I had the pleasure of making some new friends. Last night, Hubert and Jonathan took me to a church where Jonathan was going to be translating for a group of visiting gringos. During our ventures in this little town, we came across a rooster… who was on a leash… attached to a building.

It looked like this:

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Anyone who knows me well, knows of my huge dislike for public transportation… especially the city bus. For as long as I could remember, and even most days now, I despise taking the bus. It’s big and loud. The seats are uncomfortable, if you can get one. When it’s full, there are always people touching you. Sometimes it smells bad, but it just might be the guy in the seat in front of you. Nobody wants to sit with you because you are a gringa (oh wait, that’s just me), so they would rather stand in your personal space with their crotch or butt right in your face until a seat opens up. The bus driver doesn’t wait for people to get close to a seat, and you (or me, rather) end up hurting yourself (okay, myself) in some way, shape, or form. So today, I’m going to explain my love/hate relationship with the bus here in Guatemala City.

LOVE: there is always music… sometimes it’s in English, but from 1987… mostly from the Mannequin soundtrack. Most times the music is some upbeat Latin music that I can’t understand, but absolutely love.

HATE: waiting on the corner in the rain.

LOVE: when there are kids on the bus and they stare at me because I’m are different… like they have never seen a gringa before.

HATE: when there is a creepy man on the bus and he stares at me because I’m different… like he has never seen a gringa before.

LOVE: the scenery… Guatemala is such a beautiful country and I pass gorgeous plants and trees everyday.

HATE: getting onto the bus… I have hurt myself so many times because I can’t reach a seat before the driver starts going again.

LOVE: when the bus is empty… there is just something so peaceful about it.

HATE: when I try to get off the bus and have to jump off when it’s moving… it’s harder than it sounds.

LOVE: the assistant to the driver who hangs out of the open door yelling the route of the bus… last week, I saw a 7-year-old kid doing this.

HATE: the rent-a-cop that they put on the bus who always seem to be standing in the only empty seat on the bus.

LOVE: when the women who sell tortillas get on the bus with their huge baskets… people are always willing to help them get on and off the bus, and the whole bus smells like tortillas.

All in all, it’s not that bad of an experience. I have certainly learned that I’m tougher than I thought I was. I was excited this morning to go on a very small bus adventure with my roommates.

The chicken bus?? That’s a whole other blog.

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In the midst of rainy season here in Guatemala, we found nothing unusual about hearing the sound of rain hitting our roof and windows here at the Lemonade House. However, Donnie received a phone call from a friend telling us that we were not actually hearing rain outside our windows last night. We ran outside to see that it was actually raining black sand. Yes… BLACK SAND!! We played in it like it was snow… running up and down the street (Rebecca), taking pictures from under the umbrella (Rebecca and I), trying to collect it in styrofoam cups (Donnie). Cars drove up and down the street slowly, as if they might slide on what could easily be mistaken as black ice.

This morning, it reminded me of living in North Carolina after it snows an inch or two. Cars are still driving abnormally cautiously up and down our street. The schools in La Limonada are closed today. The airport in Guatemala City is closed until further notice. I have yet to hear the guy up the street announcing that the bus heading to “centro” has arrived. Two of our friends showed up at the house this morning by taxi, claiming that some of the busses are still running, but not many. I can’t hear the traffic on the main road that I usually listen for when I drink my coffee in the mornings.

There’s a smell in the air this morning… it’s a cross between the coals on a grill getting warm and the smell right before it rains. The city seems to have slowed down. There’s an uncomfortable peace this morning. The house is abnormally quiet for 11 am. Outside you can hear the scraping of shovels, removing the sand from sidewalks and rooftops. I hear crunching under people’s feet as they walk down the road. It’s just started raining. It’s a beautiful day in Guatemala.

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