(by Ashlee Arendt)
March 22, 2017
(by Ashlee Arendt)
March 22, 2017
Day 4 in Guatemala brought us yet another new adventure as we traveled from San Miguel to San Lucas which was about a 2 1/2 hour (bumpy) drive. San Lucas is where we will be doing our service project tomorrow, Thursday. After arriving, we checked into our beautiful hotel only about a 2 minute walk from the cooperative that we will be working with for the service project.
We joined the cooperative for a lunch of pork, rice, green beans, and tortillas. Next, the secretary of the cooperative took us all on a tour of San Lucas. San Lucas, we learned, has a rich history and many stories are passed down through the generations. On our tour we visited the cemetery, Maximon, the church decorated for Lent, Lake Atitlan, and of course we had to stop for some ice cream (helado in Spanish).
Maximon is a legend recognized mainly by the Mayans in Western Guatemala. Supposedly, he helped many people during the assassinations in the early 1900’s. The Maximon that we visited today was just a representation or model of what they envisioned him to look like. People come to him for help and leave him various gifts such as money, candles, and alcohol. Unfortunately we couldn’t take any pictures of the Maximon we encountered.
As you can see in the picture, the cemetary we visited is a bit different than we usually see. The graves are above ground and are colorful. Two of the towns priests who were American were put in the center of the cemetary because of their contributions to the town.
Its safe to say that our day wore us out. After a much needed rest, we rejoined the members of the cooperative for a dinner of eggs, refried beans, and plenty of coffee. We’re spending the rest of the night relaxing, playing games, and gearing up for our service project tomorrow!
Day four was full of adventure and excitement! We started off the day by heading out to find breakfast. We found our selves at this amazing place called ORWASHERS! I would for sure recommend this place If you are ever in New York and want a great place to have breakfast. After breakfast we walked over to Central Park where we spent a couple hours walking around and looking at all the statues. We also got some beautiful pictures!
Once that was over, we made our way to GHMC for our first day of actual volunteering! We spent a couple hours serving food to the clients of GHMC. I must say personally that it was one of the most rewarding experiences I have experienced. The joyful atmosphere that was in the air was radiating and filled my heart with so much love and joy. Once we were done serving lunch to the clients, we went to help with some of the prep work for the AIDS walk. After helping out sort cards our first day of actually volunteering was over!
To keep the amazing day going we took the subway over to the 9/11 memorial. Although we were excited to see the memorial, I believe that I can speak for everyone in our group when I say our condolences go out to the families and friends connected to the victims of 9/11. This event is a huge part of our history, so while going was exciting, we do recognize the meaning behind the memorial. Once we finished at the memorial we headed over to flatiron building. After seeing so many pictures of it it was very cool to see it in person. Our last stop of the day was TACOBMI which is a delicious Mexican spot! Again I would totally recommend! We had a very busy impactful day and we can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings! (Actually it brings seeing the broadway show waitress! ) super excited!
Today began with another delicious breakfast of fried eggs and bananas, fruit, and of course our favorite… coffee, courtesy of De La Gente.
We then joined our tour guide, Emmy, for another round of shopping in the city. This time the journey was a bit more interesting thanks to the “chicken bus”. These buses are the local transportation for much of the community. They are creatively painted and are one bumpy ride! According to Emmy, the chicken buses have a bit of a competition amd like to race each other to see who can pick up more people.
After doing some more shopping, we got into groups for a market scavenger hunt. Each group was given their own money to buy the part of the meal they were assigned; ingredients for either guacamole, nachos, or a smoothie/ dessert. We worked together to make our recipes and ended with a delicious lunch.
The second part of our day consisted of the artisan workshops. Everyone had signed up in advance for a workshop that they would like to attend; either peanut butter production, bag making, woodworking and iron working. Everyone came back together after dinner with their own fun creations and experiences.
Tomorrow we will be heading out to Lake Atitlan in San Lucas, Guatemala about 3 hours from where we are staying now in San Miguel. Throughout the next three days we will be doing some more touring and shopping, helping with a service project and enjoying our last day relaxing at the lake.
We are all looking forward to the rest of the week and will keep you updated on the blog!
(by Jessa Hahn)
Today we spent the day at Ocracoke Island. We missed the ferry that we wanted to get on to go over to the island, so to pass time we went to the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum to take up the time. The museum had artifacts and information on the history of the coast here on Hatteras.
After a storm here on the island, hundreds of bags of Doritos washed up on to shore. (I wish that would happen right now). It also had the manuscript that was transcribed when the Titanic called into the Hatteras weather station for help while it was sinking.
After the museum, we drove on to the ferry for about a 45 minute ride to the island. After the windy boat ride over, we arrived on Ocracoke. We drove to the Ocracoke lighthouse. Then we drove back into town and stopped for a few hours and went into the shops. There was a local coffee shop named the Magic Bean and they had the best smoothies!!!!!!! I got a coconut, pineapple, blueberry and lime smoothies and it was AMAZING. Most of the other shops were closed.
After we were done shopping, we started to head back back to the ferry but we made a pit stop along the way. We stopped at a beach access and spent a few hours at the beach. Today’s weather was gorgeous with clear sky’s, low 70s, and the sun was shinning all day.
After we returned from Ocracoke, we headed to dinner. Tonight we had TACOOOS because taco tuesdays still count even then you’re on an island! After dinner we all headed down to the beach to sit and relax while the sun set below the dunes. We saw dolphins jumping in the waves. It was a sight to see. After the beach we came back to the apartment and hung out and played games and watched the Office. Overall today was fun from start until finish.
Today was our day off but tomorrow we are back to work helping the Ocean Center. At the end of each day, I get excited to see what the next day will bring!!