Monday, April 27, 2009

Ultimate Semana in Guatemala

I can't believe that my time in Guatemala has come and go, and now I am back home. It all feels like a dream. A really wonderful dream. The last week was just as amazing as the previous 12.

Karaoke. Sasha and I had gone to this club a few times. Thursday nights is Karaoke. I thought it would be fun to sing, I mentioned that to Sasha and she encouraged me to get up and sing. If I chose a song everyone knew people would sing a long.

From this experience, I learned that
1. When I am nervous I sing high and my voice cracks
2. Not many Latinos know the song Bridge Over Troubled Water
3. As Sasha told me later "that song was not a very good song to sing to."

Dinner at the school

SCUBA diving. I certified while in Panama, and I wanted to dive one more time before I came back. So I made the trek to Lago Atitlan and dove in a high altitude volcanic lake. The site we dove at was named Agua Caliente (hot water). It is a deceptive name. I was hoping that the water would be wasn't, just the mud at the bottom. I could have left my hands in the mud all day.

Pedicures! Happy Birthday Sasha!

Now to figure out my next adventure...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Love in Guatemala

Sasha left this morning to go back to the states. I cant believe that my trip is almost over. I left wondering why I am heading home so soon. All of a sudden I dont feel ready to face the reality that I am homeless, jobless, and have no solid plans for the future. I would rather be in my pretend life in Guatemala going to school five hours a day, using my dictionary to read the newspaper, and crowding onto a chicken bus in order to go for an adventure for the weekend.

The difficulty of leaving is amplified by the realization that I have fallen in love with Guatemala. I think it may be one of the most wonderful places in the world. I cant wait to come back year ;)

(Since I dont have a way to upload pictures (because sasha left with her connecter) Here is a glimpse into what I am seeing and listening to.

This song is playing in the internet cafe:

And when I look out the door of the internet cafe, I see something like this:

I hope I see all of you soon!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Holy Week and Not So Holy Weekend

(continued from last post)

Holy week in Antigua was amazing. We were fortunate to be there Wed, Thurs, and Good Friday. The streets were packed with tourists, processions, and alfombras (carpets) made from ...everything (colored saw dust, flowers, plants, eggs, corn husk dolls...there was even one that had a turtle in it.)

Mom and me in front of an alfombra
My dad waiting patiently while we shopped

Look how cute we are

Look how cute they are

Men carrying painting of saints
Roman Soldiers

Colored saw dust for the carpet

I was impressed

And so was Emily

Look, a turtle and chips

It is made from saw dust, if you can believe it

Jesus with silver lips
An alfombra with astramaria, my favorite flower

The Good Friday procession (yes that is a volcano in the back ground)

Sadly my parents had to leave on Friday. So, Emily and I decided to meet Sasha and Rudy at the beach (we didn´t have any other options because the country shuts down on Good Friday).

Although, the beach felt a little bit like spring break 1999, I had a good time riding horses and visiting the tortuga sanctuary.

Emily and Pollo
Kirsti and Pepe

Looking at aligators
Horseback riding on the beach

The car broke down. Rudy fixed with a paper clip. Emily felt very strongly about this
(sorry Emily, I had to post this photo)

Back in Xela the following day, Emily had a little easter surprise for Sasha and me.

Seriously, yum!

On Sunday we were watched a reenactment of the crucifixion and resurrection. It was definately interesting. At the end there was confetti and a rock band.

We went to the nearby graveyard you know, for a visit.

Sasha, Emily, and Me

Thanks for coming Mom, Dad, Timo and Emily!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My family and Semana Santa

I am such a lucky person. This last week was my little brothers spring break, so my parents decided to take a trip down to Guatemala to visit their crazy, but incredibly awesome (not to mention beautiful) daughter.

Pictured here with, what will soon be, one lucky man

Originally, I was a little worried. I wanted to make sure everything went well and that my parents and little brother had a good time. Inspite of all my stress, I think they enjoyed seeing Guatemala.

Let me give you a glimpse into my last week...

For the first day we did nothing but sleep and relax, on an island where there was nothing to do but sleep and relax

Unfortunately, we could not maintain this level of relaxation. Timo, especially was dying to go somewhere. We decided to make a trip to the neighboring city of Monterrico, against the advice of the hotel manager. We arrived on the mainland, only to discover that the next bus wasn´t coming for another two hours. So of course, in true Rinne fashion, so we hitched a ride in the back of a truck, to a city where we could catch a bus.

From the neighboring city we caught a bus to Monterrico, after an hour on the bus we found ourselved on a boat, with a bus.

It took us 5 hours to get there, so we only had time for dinner (thank goodness, the food at the hotel was getting old). When we finished dinner at 5, we learned that all the buses had left for the day. Our boat captain fortunately had a ¨taxi¨ as well. So we crawled in the back and rode 2 hours back where we had started.

When we arrived back at our hotel, we found my friend Emily on our porch, we had invited her to join our adventures.

Our final day on the island we boogie boarded. How awesome is it that my parents were out there boogie boarding with Timo and me?

...Seriously awesome

The following day we took a chicken bus (or a bird bus) to Antigua.

Antigua was an amazing experience, because it was holy week. There were processions and cotton candy!

The internet cafe is closing, so I am afraid I have to leave you at the edge of your seats. You´ll have to wait to find out what I did the rest of the week....