This is the place for photos and reflections of my visits to Latin America beginning in 2012. Previous blogs are linked on the main pages of my photo collections on flickr. HAPPY TRAILS!

Saturday, November 1, 2014


Hi, all!

We arrived in San Pedro La Laguna Thursday afternoon and began enjoying our friends and good food immediately. 1st dinner was wonderful mango curry and fresh lemonade at Café Atitlán with Mynor, Josefa, and their 2 boys, Antonio (left) and Manuel, the guest of honor, having graduated from 6th grade that morning.

We are staying and eating our meals with the family until our place is ready for us; here are a few more food shots, Mynor and Antonio taking off on the scooter, and the household cats, Tom and Max.

Our original plan was to move into a completed Ti Wachooch this week but - as is often the case - things didn't go as planned. Also - as is often the case - Plan B might just be an improvement. We are enjoying getting to know Mynor's family better and are happy to be here to watch the last stages of construction; I think this will make it seem more 'ours' to both of us.

Construction is mostly complete including the majority of the surfaces, wiring, and plumbing. We plan to move our things in as soon as the doors and windows are in and the wood floor in the dining area is complete, hopefully sometime next week. Finishing touches like the finish on the wood floor, cupboard doors and shelves, towel racks, and some of the furniture will come later.

Here is an outside view,

the entry with lavadero on the left and a view past the dining area (left) and living room (right) to the bedroom,

the living and kitchen windows, wood floor of dining area at lower right,

living room window with a patch of the view and paint detail around the light,

the cool metal painted door leading to the terrace with Volcan San Pedro to the upper right,

and the completed cabaña with Indian Nose in the background.

The next morning we were invited to a local grade school promotion (the 'graduates' were 6 and 7) at a local grade school. Mynor had the honor of serving as the Padrino.


The students each made a grand entrance (several of the kids were little Beca siblings including this 1).

There were several nice speeches in Spanish and Tz'utujil (Mynor's was the best and included brief student interviews about career dreams) and then diplomas, hugs, and gifts were presented.

That's Mynor's wife, Josefa (wearing blue and purple) helping pass out the gifts.

Each child put their thumbprint by their photo in the school log, Mynor received a nice award, and there were lots of photos, 'bombas' and firecrackers followed by a wonderful lunch.

Odds are there are future Beca Project students in there, we just won't know which ones for 5 or 6 years. :-)

I enjoyed seeing lots of familiar faces including this university-level Beca student with her daughter,

this Beca sister,

and this Beca grandma selling oranges at the gate.

Here are a few additional glimpses of how we've filled our 1st few days. Mike joined a gym a few blocks from the house - 40 quetzales (about $5) for 2 weeks.

We stopped by the Cooperativa School to say hi to friends including garden artist Delfino, seen below mowing the lawn with hand clippers.

We looped through the market and I bought a new shopping basket.

Without even trying I have run into more than half of the Beca students or members of their families - hugs galore! 

We have enjoyed activities of family life including shopping at home (neighbor and Mynor cousin Lucy on the left, Beca mom in the middle selling bread)

and making tortillas.

I visited the cemetery, just up the street from the house, 4 times today to watch the Día de los Muertes (Day of the Dead) festivities; that's worth a separate post but here's a taste - early arrivers.

Highlight: lots of view gazing from the terrace.

Happy trails!

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