Trouble in Paradise- Resolution and Ruins

Published: October 1st 2006
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Que Pasa?
Its been an interesting week with extreme emotional highs and lows. At the moment I feel quite pleasant. I am writing to you from a Internet cafe in Flores. Its very touristy.

After leaving Lake Atitlan, we took a autobus to Antigua which is the old capital of Guatemala. It is filled with beautiful ruined churches and colonial style houses. Its a colorful city.

On the outside, everything I was experiencing was exciting but I there was something I was not accepting. That night in the hostel, a friend asked me how I was feeling about my Grandmother and what was holding me back became clear. My heart is at home with my Grandmother and my family. Therefore, I was in a bit of a jam. I didn't know what to do. It didn't feel right to complete this program if I couldn't be present in Central America. I have wanted and needed this trip for so long and once I finally arrived, it didn't like feel right time for me to be focusing on my personal development. I struggled with the decison of whether to head home or not. After giving it a few days thought and speaking with my parents, I decided it was best for everyone if I stay. I have re-routed my plans of self discovery and decided to incorporate these changes in my life and use them to test myself. I am still feeling on the edge about staying, but I think I made the right decison. Each day gets eaiser.

In a cultural sense, Guatemala is wonderful. I have spent the last week in a homestay in a small village called San Andres. Its located on a beautiful turquoise lake. The weather here is quite predictable. Its warm in the morning and begins to heat up at around 11:00. By 12:30 its around 95 degrees and the sky is bright blue with clouds that look like poofs of cream (cumulus?) Then at 4:30 it pours. By nightfall, the rain has stopped and its cool enough to sleep.

I am picking up Spanish. I have language class for four hours a day with a private teacher. My teacher Brenda is splendid woman. We enjoy each others company. After class, I usally jump in the lake and then we have some kind of activity planned for the afternoon. A few days ago we visted a animal rehabilitation center and I played with spider monkeys. We have also maintained a beach and attended a conference about the history of the town we currently live in.

Yesterday, we woke up at 3:30 am and took a bus to Tikal. For those who don't know, Tikal is an ancient Mayan city that is partially uncovered. As the fog cleared, I found myself keeping up my daily yoga practice on the top of a Mayan temple. Monkeys were swinging in the jungle below and the tops of other Myan temples were visable 360 degrees around us. It is one of the coolest places I have ever visited.

I have one more week in my San Andres homestay and then we go on a trek. I am not the most avid hiker but it should be good. Once again, I send my love home.

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