Sunday, January 22, 2012

Life Off the Bikes

Since our last update we’ve switched from physical to mental exercise here in San Pedro, Guatemala.  Right now we are halfway through a planned 6 weeks of Spanish classes.

So far we have loved our Spanish school “La Cooperativa”.  Starting at 8AM, 5 days a week, we have four hours of one on one Spanish instruction at the school.  In the afternoon we usually spend 2-4 hours studying at one of the numerous cafes in town and drinking coffee.  We are staying with a local family here: Miguel, Maria, and their three girls Ana-Maria, Norma, and Angela.  We couldn’t have asked for a better family.  They have welcomed us into their home with open arms and Maria is an excellent cook!

During our free time we’ve been hanging out with the other students or exploring the surrounding area.  In addition to providing assistance to local families, the school organizes activities for students outside of class time.  These include salsa class once a week, Spanish movie night, lectures on Mayan history and issues, and activities on the weekends.  Here are four of our most memorable activities so far:

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Guatemalan Charm

Since our last post we have left Chiapas, Mexico and continued through the Guatemalan highlands to Lake Atitlan, Guatemala.  We’ve experienced Guatemalan hospitality, our first border crossing, Guatemalan drivers, and the beauty of the Guatemalan highlands.

The people so far have been poor, but very friendly.  Many have approached us for a conversation, giving us an opportunity to practice our Spanish.  It’s almost tiring on the bike to wave and say hello to everyone we pass, as they all give us big silver grins (dental hygiene is a work in progress here).  They also have an incredible knowledge of random English phrases, such as: goodbye, how you doin’, what’s up man, hey you, etc.

Colourful necklaces made from corn, nuts, and peas.

Colourful Mayan necklaces made from corn, peas, and nuts.