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Johni22’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 22 Feb 2007

Location: Antigua, Guatemala

Map Today, I woke up, and unlike the other days, we finally had some time to stay at the hotel room before we left. After that time, we got a cab and went to the school where Kristina works. We were kind of late it was the end of her class. She taught art and english to kindergarte n through 4th graders. she was teaching art. She was a good teacher all the kids agreed. We had them ask us questions so they learn a little english. After that it was recess and olunch time, so she said she would talk to us about the school. First we saw where all the classrooms were, very small unfotunately, then we went to the playground room. compared to the classrooms it was huge. They had a wooden playground set that was built months ago by the church in Dover. Lunch was served as choclate covered frozen bananas (I had one), fried pig rind (pig skin with ketchup mostly), fruit frozen together like a popsicle, some nacho like little tortillas and various other snacks. We noticed that there was barbed wire around as they been robbed twice and they have to have guards at night and a gate guard child for the day time. After that we took a tour with one of Kristinas friends, whose name was Juan, one of the best English speaker that we met besides Kristina. But he thought that he wasn't very good. So next we went to a very large gold chuch from the sixteenth century. We went inside and it was very interesting and different from our churches. So you look through an d you see a large huge golden stand behind the alter, with two statues of famous saints and then youlook up, you expect to see a crucifix with Jesus on it or something like that, but no, a giant statue of Mary with a golden crown with a hugh aura of gold around her but with dark eyes, you could see some kind of evil in them. I noticed that every statue of Jesus in the church had him suffering and there was even one of him in a coffin, I wonder why. If you went to one side there were lots of priests tombs in the walls, then if you looked to the right from that side there was a golden stand, and a statue, a cross in the background with a shining dove at the top, at the right was what looked like jesus with a cross staff, and on the left was a man, close to looking like jesus, with a green pyramid in one hand, a cross in the other, a green pyramid above his head, wearing green robes. Jesus and the other guy were both standing on the heads on people. I guess it stood for father(the robed guy), son(Jesus), and holy spirit(dove). There was something cool going on at the time, people were dyeing woodchips with veggies, and making beutiful designes that looked like a woven carped, I was told by Juan that it was for walking through during a precession. I later learned that when the pope comes to guatemala, they make a 14 kilometer path like that from the airport to the city square in Guatemala City, Then he just would walk through it. After that, we went to another church, The oldest place in Antigua. The church was extremely old, and creepy, more like a monestary than a church. In the chapel, there was nothing because it was destroyed in an earthquake. He showed us a monk's tomb, It was creepy as can be, lots of candels around a coffin with a statue of Mary laying on it covered with flowers. Juan said that if you are alone, sometimes you can hear moaning. He led us into what was the dormitory. In the center there was a nail in a brick. If you stood on it there was a weird echo that no one else could hear. Trust me I heard it.After that we went to another part of the Church where monks were punnished, it was a little corner with a hole in the ceiling. A bad monk would sit there and get water poured all over him all night long, and nights are wicked cold in Guatemala. After that Juan had to go to school, He was 19 and in 9th grade, It is sad that you have to go down grades because of no proper education, like there was a 14 year old in 2nd grade. After that we went out to lunch with Kristina.Then we went to an arch, the most famous symbol of guatemala. It was built so nuns could go through the arch to cross the street without being seen by pedestrians. Then we went to the market and Kristina left. We bough lots of stuff, and had the best bargin ever, It was 2000 quetzel to 450 quetzel because the merchant was so presistent. We then rode a little three wheeled thing called a tuk-tuk, it was the bumpiest thing ever. When we arrived in the hotel we just ate, watched a movie, and went to bed.