Thursday, April 05, 2007

Mayan Ruins, Salsa Dancing, and Coffee Plantations

It´s been an eventful week here in Guatemala. I spent the weekend just over the Guatemala-Honduras border, where there are the remains of a big ancient Mayan city, and where the climate is waaay hotter and more humid than the mountains around Antigua and Guatemala City. The ruins were amazing, but it was almost more fun just to experience a more tropical climate and jungle-y area, with parrots and giant trees. Also, although my hotel there was a bit of a hole, it did have hammocks to lie in... and boy, do I enjoy a good hammock.

Monday, I started Spanish lessons again. I only took 3 days of spanish classes this week, 5 hours a day. I had a new teacher this time, and he was a bit of a a result, I feel like I´ve crammed in alot of Spanish learning over the past 3 days. It was really good to come back to spanish classes after a few weeks immersed in the language to realize I´ve actually made some progress, and know a whole wack of spanish words. I even have a fancy diploma that proclaims me to have reached the level of "intermedio medio" (Mid-intermediate) in Spanish... although, I have to say I think that was awfully generous of them.

In the afternoons, I´ve mostly tooled around the city of Antigua. Yesterday, I went for a bike tour to a nearby coffee plantation. It was pretty cool... the plantation itself was a modest, fairly industrial place. Cool, because it wasn´t very touristy, and I learned neat stuff about how they process coffee beans... less cool, because I didn´t get to taste any coffee, and we got stuck in a rare spell of rain while cycling back into town.

I´ve also taken a couple of Salsa lessons, which have been super fun... although ocasionally stressful, as my arms and body and legs don´t always want to get along as well as my brain demands.

Oh, also, I´m sick again. I currently can barely talk. I´ve done a ton of amazing things on this trip, but I´ll be happy to be back in Toronto in a couple of days, where the germs are less plentiful and more familiar to my body.


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