Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Waiting out the Rain in Panajachel

Today was a pretty mellow day. Mom & I got up around 6:30am & left Antigua around 8.30am. After about 2 hours we made it to the lake-side town of Solola where it was market day. It was so colorful; all the women have amzingly intricate blouses; each embroideried with more colors than I ever imagined existed, and they even braid colored ribbons into their braids that snake down their backs. They are all so beautiful, especially because they are so quick to smile. The market was a sensory overload with sights, smells, sounds & the touch of hundreds of people touching as you squeeze past each other. Dried fish, grains, fruits, underwear, vegetables, flowers, padlocks, crocodile meat (a first for me), live chickens, dead chickes, live turkeys, old-school water-bird-whistles (which of course I had to buy b-c I´d not seen one of those since I was little), corn on the cob, women making tortillas, soap, buckets, string, batteries, strawberries, and SO much more.

We had a bit of a corn overload for lunch in the market. We bought corn tortillas (freshly made & still warm of course), corn tamales (with a mystery meat inside) and corn on the cob (with lime & salt). Needless to say I think we may have overloaded on it a bit early in the trip, as I have a feeling many days of corn are still ahead.

We are now sitting in an internet cafe and have been for a while. I wish I could record the sound of the thunder booming and the rain pouring. It is coming down in buckets...and being the bad daughter that I am, I forgot to tell Mom it si the rainy season in Guatemala right now...oops, so she didn´t bring a raincoat. We were walking to find a particular restaurant & got caught in the rain...so here we sit instead. There are little tuk-tuks all over Guatemala, and this town is no different, so we may just jump in one of those after running across the street to a little pizzeria.

We are in Panajachel, a town that sits on Lake Atitilan (said to be the most beautiful lake in all of Central America). The lake is surrounded by 3 volcanos which makes for a magnificent landscape. I am hoping that the rain will bring in white puffy clouds & bright blue skies in the morning. We plan on renting kayaks to explore the lake, and hopefully hiking to a nature reserve that used to be a coffee plantation. However, we really have no back-up plans for pouring rain. I know we definately won´t venture onto the lake if it is as stormy as it is now- that´s a lightening strike waiting to happen.

So, I will sign off for now - the growl of our stomachs is making us not care about the pouring rain.

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