we made it back to cooler, higher ground! we’ve been in san cristobal for a few days now and really needed the time to just relax and slow down. i think we didn’t realize how fast we were moving until we actually took a second to do some inventory. now that we have allowed ourselves to stay put for the last few days we’ve slept, read, and sat around a lot. it’s good to be lazy again. it also does something a little strange to the brain after the weeks of excitement and constant motion that we have just come away from. i’ve been super introspective the last few days and really started thinking about where we are at with our travels.
i’m definitely not in a place where i can come to conclusions, but it’s good to know a little bit more about how the trip is affecting me. bob and i had a long talk last night about what we miss (and don’t) from home. and, honestly, the only thing we really miss are the people. we’ve pretty quickly embraced our nomadic way of life… for now. there will come a time when we need to have a place to call our own again, and a kitchen to cook in. we miss cooking!! that’s probably the hardest thing to deal with in our current lifestyle. we’ve been trying not to stay at too many hostels because we really don’t want to be surrounded by english speaking americans the entire time. but, i think the prospect of a kitchen will start to draw us in occassionally. and, i’m ok with the trade-off.
our time in mexico is quickly coming to an end, and with it i find myself thinking back to those last days in laredo, texas. it was hard to juggle my feelings of excitement with all the fear that my loved ones (and complete strangers) had placed on me concerning my journey through mexico. after two and a half weeks here, i’ve gained some perspective by simply having the experience that i came here to have. i’ve met wonderfully, generous people who love to share the beauty of their country with others. i have seen a military presence in cities and at checkpoints, but its pretty obvious that they want nothing to do with me and are trying to get a hold on the conflict that involves such a small percentage of the people here. i’m also frustrated with what news actually gets to us as americans. it’s never the picture of mexican cities that are full of life and vibrancy. it’ll take awhile to fully understand my feelings about my weeks in mexico, and how differently they turned out than everyone was fearing. but, one thing i’m sure of is that i’ll miss it. it’s a wonderful place and i’m sad that more americans aren’t experiencing it for themselves currently. (at least the europeans are all still coming!)
as much as i will miss mexico, there is plenty of adventure ahead! the prospect of guatemala is super exciting. and, we’ve reserved a week at a language school and homestays with guatemalan families. that should really change how we interact and i’m pretty stoked to finally be fully immersed for a week. i think it’s the push i’ve needed in my speaking ability. also, guatemala holds the prospect of familiar faces! our friends ryan and juliana are there now with a group from bellarmine university, and we are going to meet up with them for the end of their own adventure. i cannot wait to see them! until then, here are some views of our last few days in the mountains…
our sweet bike parking at the hotel we’ve been hulling up in, the patio is such a nice way to relax away from all the tourist traffic and the hustle and bustle
breakfast was half of this juicy papaya (thanks for sharing, pete!), a mango apiece and a few tiny bananas. yum!
san cristobal is full of narrow streets, colorful houses, and mountain views in any direction you turn
our new favorite soup: pozole. it’s a local staple and it comes with shredded chicken or pork (or both) and puffed up corn. it’s really delicious and cheap and awesome when you’re cold. i’m going to learn how to make it when we land somewhere with a kitchen.
san cristobal’s unique cathedral in the plaza at sunset. i loved the colors.
the best $7 dollars we’ve spent in awhile! we had our laundry done here (i wasn’t into the do-it-yourself method in the cold, just in case it never dried out). and we were thrilled with the super clean, good smelling items that used to be our dirty, beyond help clothing. they worked a miracle on a few of bob’s pieces. now we’ll be clean for at least a few days! ha.