Although we left Tecpan early on Sunday morning (November 5th) I wrote down some things that made living in Tecpan so unique. I miss it already and will never forget my amazing host family and outstanding experience I had there. As of right now I am on enrichment week traveling around Guatemala and just generally being a tourist. In just two days (November 13th), however, we all will be boarding a plane setting out for Thailand. Our next core country.
- Everyday my host family would all wake up around 6am and get ready for the day. They would shower and start cooking breakfast. My host father (working in Guatemala City) would get up at 4am daily and then drive the long journey to work.
- Our host sister, Andrea, would wait for us and when we were ready to go to worksite, at 7:15am, she would walk with us and take attendance, this being her job.
- We spent worksite doing farm work: weeding strawberry fields, clearing corn fields, or planting strawberries. Every morning was spent like this from 8:00am to 12pm
- When we got back from worksite around 12:30pm everyday we would arrive back into town and have some time to kill before our 1pm lunch.
- Isabel, our youngest host sister, would make us lunch and around this time our host mom would arrive from her school job. We would eat normally some sort of soup or pasta while listening to Marimba music. This was a Tecpan normality because everyone listened to Marimba while they ate lunch. The whole family would come home from work (if they could) to be present for meals.
- Every meal, except for breakfast, was a long social event ending only when you excused yourself from the table by thanking everyone with a mighty, “Muchas Gracias!” and receiving a, “Buen Provecho!” in return.
- Every Thursday most of the Tecpan streets, mostly around the central area where the church was, would be covered in street venders because it would be market day! The first Thursday we had to walk through the mess to get to meet our worksite bus, Morgan got lost in the hubbub and we had to look for at least half an hour until he was eventually found. While walking through this market I have seen live crabs in a bucket and a woman discretely steal a small dried fish snack from a pile of them as she walked by. They sell more than just food there though, you could find anything if you look hard enough. Watching all the streets transform every week was amazing to witness.
- I definitely was privileged to live with the host family that I had because we were luckily with what we had. Clare and I got warm water, a car with a host brother and father who could drive, great food, and a gracious, sharing family that cared about the environment and sustainability.