Posted by: vlbyers | June 4, 2011

McCaws in Copan


Cathedral in Santa Ana


Vicki and Larry in Honduras

Street in Antigua, Guatemala


Dr visit in Antigua


polishing the jade

Vicki modeling traditional clothing


Traditional weaving


Church in Antigua


Antigua town square


Lake view at Flores


Tical Lodge


Sunset from #4


Goati


Tical


One of the things that makes cruising so fun are the inland trips that we are able to take. When we started out on our adventure we didn’t really know what this cruising life would be for us, as everyone is totally different. Some folks have lots of money and large fancy boats and are able to zip here and there without a thought, some are on such a restricted budget that even eating out is not an option for them. We are somewhere in between, certainly we have to watch what we spend as we would like to continue this cruising life for as long as we are able, thankfully living in other countries can be much less expensive.
It is like that here in El Salvador. We are very fortunate to have stumbled onto a place in Bahia del Sol where it is safe to leave your boat for an extended time so we did. We left on May 2 with a group of 10 and our guide Jorge Martinez to go to Tical Guatemala. Tical is an amazing Mayan ruin which is reported to have magical powers by some who visit. Our trip included going through San Salvador the capital of El Salvador, to La Libertad where we saw the cathedral and on to Santa Ana, a charming town where we toured the city building, the theatre and beautiful modern Cathedral.
Crossing the border at Guatemala we then went to Honduras and stayed in Copan, Honduras which was a favorite for many of us. This town is clean and has lots to offer, we stayed at the Hotel Marina Copan, I am not sure where the marina was, but whatever. We ate at the Harley Davidson restaurant, not sure if that was it’s name but it is famous for the women waiting on you and carrying all the dishes to your table on their heads. Our group was already proving to be a great fit and we had a fun dinner.
In Copan there is an archeological site which we toured on the next day after we had breakfast at the hotel. There are some beautiful McCaws at the site and we watched them fly, preen and talk with each other after we were done viewing the site, a great way to end that tour. From Copan we travelled all day, good thing we liked our travelling companions, into Guatemala to arrive in Antigua. We had dinner at Posada Don Rodrigo which was accompanied with a traditional dance, all the ladies in our group got a chance to get up and dance with the dancers shaking our stuff, and the maracas.
May 4, tour of Antigua, the Cathedral, city center and several other convents around the city that are now private homes. We also toured the artisan market and jade factory, I got to model their traditional dress, hummm why do they pick me, it was very fun. We stayed in La Catedral, unfortunately I had to skip dinner as I crashed that night. I had been fighting something for the past week, in fact when we talked about this trip I was not feeling well and we had to make the decision to go despite me being on the edge. I had a fever, chills, achyness and a headache. We called the doc and he made a house call and prescribed antibiotics for strep. In the morning I was feeling much better and by the next night I felt great.
May 5 We were up at 0330 to leave for Guatemala City and our flight to Flores and then Tical. The flight was only an hour, I can’t believe we were thinking of taking a bus, and then 1.5 hours in the van to Tical. We stayed at the jungle lodge which is on the property of Tical so we would have access to view the sunrise from the ruins. Our bungalows were clean but basic, roomy and the grounds were like a campground. We met Henry our guide and he took us to the site by way of a ‘shortcut’. Since we arrived later in the morning our trip to the ruins was in the heat of the day and there was little shade, although walking through the jungle was very cool, we could hear the monkeys screaming, the spider monkeys were having fun swinging from tree to tree (they actually do this). Since we had eaten so early all of us were especially hungry and wanted to eat lunch before we went to the site, Henry discouraged this as he only was to be with us for a few hours. We spent a few hours at the site and then were taken to the group area for lunch. Henry was gone after this, he did talk with us about our plan for the sunrise and said since it had been cloudy that we might not see the sun, we decided to make another trek up to see the sunset instead.
After a little rest and relaxation in the afternoon, some of the group met up to go back to the site. We were stopped by the guards at the entrance and asked for our tickets, ‘what tickets, we had a guide and he bought them?’. They looked through their documentation and didn’t find a paper that had entrance for 10 people and were not going to let us enter. We continued to have them call to the hotel, where we found out he was talking with Oscar, the owner of the hotel/restaurant, and finally got waved through. I was feeling so much better that I was able to make the hike to Temple 4 and the hundreds of stairs to the top to see the view. It was cloudy so we didn’t actually see the sunset but we did see the colors of the sun setting and the amazing view of the jungle and the tops of some of the ruins-taking all of it in was quite magical, this is what we came for. On our way home it was getting a bit dark but we all brought some sort of light and we had fun hearing the monkeys screeching and fireflies lit our way too, we felt like kids.
May 6, Today started out leisurely since I opted to skip the early morning trip to the ruins, some of the group did go and tried to go through the shortcut which our guide Henry used, they were promptly stopped and asked to pay admission which they did. One of the guards was willing to take them in and provide a little private tour however, we surmised that our guide paid for him to look the other way yesterday as we went through the same shortcut. We also surmised that Henry did not pay our admission fee but instead kept the money he had been given, something that the owner of the hotel and Jorge would be made aware of.
We packed up and headed to Flores, this is a cute town next to a lake and there is lots of souvenir shopping to be had but we all came to the conclusion that 2 hours is all you need, and this includes time to stop for lunch. From Flores we caught the plane to Guatemala city where we stayed in the Hilton, very, very nice, in the heart of the city and near lots of shopping and such but we were advised not to be out walking after 9 pm, we opted to have dinner in and relax by taking a nice tub bath!!! I am still taking the antibiotics and Ibuprofen daily, there is still something going on as I continue to have achyness and headaches. Probably will follow-up once we return to El Salvador.
May 7-Van ride to Guatemala/El Salvador border. Our group has really gelled and we spent the bulk of the time writing a song about our trip and our Guide Jorge, to the tune of ‘she loves me’. We laughed so hard at some of the lyrics but we tried to put in as much of our experiences as possible. Jorge said he had never had a group write a song for him in his 18 yrs of guiding. We also grabbed the mike and sang it to him on our way home. Our ride home included a stop at the grocery store, in our travels we have complained about the lack of some of our ‘normal’ foods, in Mexico some things were hard to come by and were very expensive if you could find them. We are finding that there are some things we were able to get in Mexico that we are not able to get here-now we are longing for the variety we left in Mexico! The grass really IS greener.
Happy reading, Vicki


Responses

  1. I’m so happy that my “little” girl is having the time of her life with her
    handsome and gallant husband.
    I saw her being the Mother of four lovely children. While at the same time completing her studies and becoming a registered nurse. The children have benefited, like few have, to have the great good fortune to be raised by, what I have known to be one of the finest examples of Motherhood.
    The way she has risen to the top of her profession, after being a caring and competent mid-wife and all the while maintaining healthy personal relationships with everyone she was connected with, brings feelings of satisfaction. I feel joyful from knowing and sharing many, many experiences with Vicki, the most complete person I have met in this life time. Vicki’s Mother deserves alot of
    credit for how she turned out.
    May every day be a new beginning as we continue our voyage together.

    Dad


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