First Day in San Lucas, Guatemala!
Today was our first full day in San Lucas, Guatemala. Walking down the streets, we saw many things such as stray dogs and lots of street vendors. We started the day off with breakfast at the biblioteca, which is the meeting place of all the missionaries. We had pancakes, eggs, and a roll which was very delicious. Following breakfast, we went on a boat ride to some communities around the lake. The water was so blue and the ride was wonderful. The first town was called San Antonio Palopo which was very beautiful and reminded us of Greece with all the homes being built right on the side of the mountain. The climb to the top was an exhausting one, but we managed to get up. We stopped to see a quaint little church overlooking the city with a gorgeous view. A little boy followed us up to the church asking us for a quetzal. That was hard to see. Many boys and girls had no shoes including the boy asking for money. The people we met were very kind. We were lucky enough to get a picture with some of the locals. They loved getting photos with the gringos (white people). We stopped at a few shops and shopped around for things like bowls, mugs, plates and so much more. The people here are very talented. Many things they sell on the street are hand-crafted. We saw many women weaving cloths and washing their clothes in the lake. There was a washing spot with sinks for them to do their laundry but it was trashed with a lot of glass and we didn’t know if their was running water so that’s why they did their laundry in the lake. Many people were also taking baths in the lake as well.
Across the lake a little further, we stopped at another town called Panajachel. This town was a little busier with many people crowding the streets to shop, eat, and be by the water. We stopped for lunch at a place called Sunset Cafe. The price wasn’t terrible and the food was amazing. Being some of the gringos here, we get a lot of stares walking down the streets just because we are foreigners in a new country. That surprised many of us. There were many things we bought from street vendors in this town such as notebooks, dresses, shirts, bracelets, and pottery. Some of us got to use our bargaining skills and got some good deals on lots of cool things. After a little browsing we got back on the boat and traveled back to San Lucas.
After a long morning, we went back to the hotel, rested, and then played a really fun card game called The Catholic Card Game. It’s basically Apples to Apples but the Catholic version. After that we went and ate an amazing super. It was chicken, veggies, and rolls and filled us right up. Once we were done we went out on the street to go to a local ice cream shop and got to see people pile out of the late Sunday night mass. We finished the day up with a meeting reflecting on the day and talking about what the real reason we were here for. Mary explained that our goal was not to change or implement our ways of life, but to support and assist in theirs. It was interesting the change of perspective from before and actually getting here and I’m sure in the days to follow new experiences will broaden our entire way of thinking.