Central America | Guatemala – Guatemala in Retrospect: a journal entry

Central America | Guatemala – Guatemala in Retrospect: a journal entry

Friday, July 19, 2002

Three year old Luis is in the courtyard playing with flowers by the hanging laundry. The women are busying around, the grandpa is eternally in bed because of knee surgery. I can’t realize if a month is still a long time to go- or if my summer here is drawing to a close. I feel no longer a tourist here. I discover pastel block buildings and ancient windows only to remember that this won’t last forever- remind myself to bring out the camera and take pictures of things that will no longer be familiar. While I was at the top of Volcan Pacaya- throwing my apple core into the center of the steam, I wondered at how to fully grasp a moment in time without being overwhelmed by it- I suppose that is why we take pictures, so that maybe later we can realize something that came to pass- something we did not understand at the time. I can’t figure out if it’s a short or long time- and which one would be good or bad. Why do I feel the need to categorize and realize my feelings about everything. Feelings are just reactions and fickle emotions that don’t matter much – I marvel at how much I don’t think. There are three buildings at the project where I work, where we eat, the school and the church. and I just realized that the church and where we eat are separate buildings even though they are a block apart and we walk there everyday. Some things just aren’t important in my head sometimes.
This morning, I am sick with a runny nose. I used to rest of the TP and cut my hair with a gillette razor-not so bad! I went in search of Kleenex. A women from a small corner store did not sell any but gave me a full packet of her own for free. I love the women here- fat and motherly. The type of woman who furrows her brow and tells you to rest when you are sick. I never know what to say or do around them, but fat motherly Guatemalan women don’t seem to notice. Kind of like Grandma R. before she died.

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