More recent posts about Guatemala

Articles from Guatemala

  1. Guatemala The First Floor

    This is the first of many cement floors that we built. Most rural Guatemalans live inhouses with dirt floors

  2. Guatemala End of the Day's Work

    Coffee pickers--men, women and children--washing their sticky costales in the river after picking coffee cherries all day. 

  3. Guatemala Horse Races

    Residents of the town of Todos Santos Cuchumatan engage in a horse race every year. The only stipulation is that the contestants must be (very) drunk, per a tradition based on a legend that the first man brave enough to ride a horse in Guatemala was from this town and was drunk when he did it, thus disproving the Spaniards' warnings that if a Guatemalan tried to ride a horse, they would be met with instant death.

  4. Guatemala Easter Procession

    Women carry flowers in the Semana Santa Procession

  5. Guatemala Hiking with a Local Family

    This is a picture taken fairly recently in the town of Santa Lucia Utatlan, Solola.  I went hiking with some of my students and their family up a mountain in my town to get a look at the Volcanoes (Volcan San Pedro and Volcan Atitlan) which both sit on Lago de Atitlan.  It was quite a site. 

  6. Guatemala Spinning Wool

    An "anciano", ancient, spins wool in an indigenous village

  7. Guatemala Kata Planting

    Kata plants radish seed in her newly-tilled garden

  8. Guatemala Easter Fish

    Doña Ana prepares a traditional fish soup for Easter

  9. Guatemala Carrying Yefferson

    An old grandmother carries her grandson, Yefferson, on her back while another grandchild peeks from the house

  10. Guatemala Los Volcanes

    A view of the volcanoes that surround Lake Atitlan

  11. Guatemala Juan's Radio

    Don Juan falls asleep listening to his radio in the front yard

  12. Guatemala Preparing the Garden

    Ana gently works her tiny garden in preparation of planting. 

  13. Guatemala An Offering

    An old Mayan man offers a passion fruit picked from his tree

  14. Guatemala Timid Pride

    Ana poses by her weaving proudly. 

  15. Guatemala Ring for the Dead

    A Mayan man rings the bell for each "muerto" in his family on Dia de Todos Santos

  16. Guatemala The Harvest

    A field worker holds the harvest in his hands with a harvesting tool hanging around his wrist

  17. Guatemala Watching

    A Mayan couple watch dancing at a fair, dressed their best. 

  18. Guatemala Break

    An old Mayan woman takes a break from weaving

  19. Guatemala Sitting

    An ancient Mayan man sits outside his house. 

  20. Guatemala Culture Clash

    A Mayan grandma wrapped in traditional clothes supports her granddaughter wearing an American flag bandana

  21. Guatemala Vigilance

    Isabel swings incense over the graves of her family on Dia de Todos Santos

  22. Guatemala An Offering

    An "anciano", or ancient, Mayan man offers a passionfruit from his tree.

  23. Guatemala Flowers.

    Some of the girls making flowers out of plastic bottle to decorate a car with for the Parade. I was impressed with their creativity!

  24. Guatemala Conservative?

    As conservative as Guatemalan culture is, especailly in my site where the majority of the population is indigenous and wear their traditional "Traje," It was amazing for me to see the outfits my kids wore for the Feria - or the town Fair, as in this picture. But they were so proud as they were dancing down the streets of our town. I couldn't help but be proud!

  25. Guatemala The Masses.

    Feria, Day #1. Early in the morning, the Premaria (elementary school) students had a parade throughout town (which I encountered while out running errands). The parade ended up here at this futbol field directly in front of my house where the announcer gave the statistics for the school and the kids got to do their dance in front of everyone. But what you can't hear in Michael Jackson playing in the background which makes this scene truly magical...

  26. Guatemala Sparkly.

    Some of the boys making flowers to decorate a car for the Parade. What you don't know from this picture is that about 30 seconds after I took it, a major Glittler-throwing war began and ended with about 10 sparkly 13 year old boys. It was quite hillarious. 

  27. Guatemala Styrofoam Wedding

    As the young Guatemalan bride sits down with her groom to eat their reception lunch, the "girl bride" is busy playing with styrofoam flakes that showered the newlyweds after they exchanged their vows.

  28. Guatemala Feria Blues... and Pinks, and Yellows and...

    Guatemalan feria worker patiently awaiting passengers for his colorful carousel.

  29. Guatemala Hogtied Crock

    While eating breakfast one morning my host dad, Fernando, asked me, "Lisa, were you frightened?" I had no idea what he was talking about. "No. Why?" I replied. "I thought maybe you saw the crocodile outside when you went to the bathroom this morning." "Crocodile?" I thought, "Am I translating this right?" So, I peered outside and sure enough there was a hogtied crocodile laying 5 feet from the front door. The crocodile had been terrorizing the...

  30. Guatemala My Peace Corps Family

    My host siblings and me hanging out at the training center.

  31. Guatemala Training Room

    This is my bedroom in my host family's house.  There was no ensuite bathroom!  In fact, the bathroom wasn't exactly in the house!

  32. Guatemala Life

    I believe there are very few things, physically, that Guatemalans cannot accomplish. They are the embodiment of inner strength and endurance. To you and me, we see a log that needs to get from point A to point B and think, "I need a truck." To a Guatemalan, all they need is some rope and sheer will power. I am humbled daily by their strength.

  33. Guatemala Guatemala, old and new

    This photo was taken while on a walk with my host mom to her coffee farm. I think it portrays Guatemala as it is now: a mix of old and new, wherever one looks.

  34. Guatemala Just Waiting

    Can´t remember why...but these guys were just hanging out.

  35. Guatemala Site mates

    When your house doesn´t have anything in it, find some site mates to build you a couch.

  36. Guatemala Site Sunset

    Nice view from my house

  37. Guatemala Hanging out at site

    Normal weekend

  38. Guatemala Special Señorita

    Nice pic

  39. Guatemala Kids at laguna

    Festival of asking for the rain at lake chicabal. 

  40. Guatemala After Thanksgiving

    Celebrating Thanksgiving with all from my training group

  41. Guatemala Pupusas

    Enjoying some street food

  42. Guatemala Cooperative

    Guys working hard

  43. Guatemala Waiting for el Presidente

    Local welcome wagon waiting for the President to show up

  44. Guatemala Kid Float


  45. Guatemala Helicpoter ride

    Taking over the kiddie rides in town at night.

  46. Guatemala View of town

    My town at it´s essence, fog & corn fields.

  47. Guatemala PCV´s

    Having fun

  48. Guatemala Old timers keeping the tradition

    Few towns exist where men still use traje in Guatemala.  These guys show their pride-

  49. Guatemala Oxlajuj Primary School Graduation

    I was invited to be the 'padrino' (godfather) at the graduation ceremony at Oxlajuj Primary School, one of the 3 rural elementary schools I work at in the Guatemalan highlands doing a health education project. In the photo are the graduating preschoolers and 6th graders. Sadly, as the picture shows, many Guatemalan children drop out before making it even to 6th grade. Nonetheless, I am always encouraged to think that for most of the students I work with, particularly the girls, they are the f...

  50. Guatemala Mayan Dance

    A group of primary students in a small rural school performed a typical Mayan Dance as part of the festivities for the September 15th, Guatemalan Independence Day. The dress is typical of the municipality of Nebaj; the Ixil Mayan people.

  51. Guatemala The Good Life

    Coffee Farm in Antigua

  52. Guatemala La Reina II

    Little girl performing in traje típica in the election of "La reina de independencia" Chi Don Juan.

  53. Guatemala La Reina III

    Little girl performing in the rain for "La reina independencia" Chi Don Juan.

  54. Guatemala Reinita I

    Little girl performing in her traje típica is soon to be elected "la reina independencia" en Chi Don Juan.

  55. Guatemala Traje Típica

    Women in the village dressed in the tipical corte and guipil of the region.

  56. Guatemala Life in Livingston

    Some local kids hanging out on the corner.

  57. Guatemala Reinita II

    Little girl performing for "la reina independencia" election in Chi Don Juan.

  58. Guatemala Mural Painting

    Painting with the kids of Chi Don Juan. A mural of a Mayan woman.

  59. Guatemala Niñas

    Girls of Caserio Chi Don Juan at a school event.

  60. Guatemala Subanik Face

    Subanik is a traditional dish of the region. It is a tomato-based stew made with chicken, beef, and sometimes pork. Here, Juan José sports this culinary tradition on his face.

  61. Guatemala La Reina I

    A little girl performing for the election of "La Reina Independencia" Chi Don Juan.

  62. Guatemala Roses for the Judges

    I was lucky enough to be chosen as a judge for the "Reina de Independencia" pageant in a nearby village. As judges, we were treated to lunch and beautiful flowers.

  63. Guatemala Reina I

    Girl performing for the election of "la reina independencia" in Chi Don Juan.

  64. Guatemala Reina II

    Girl in her beautiful Mayan traje at the election of "la reina independencia" in Chi Don Juan.

  65. Guatemala Fishing the Mangroves

    Early morning fishing on the river.

  66. Guatemala Mangroves

    Sunrise over the mangroves

  67. Guatemala La Pedida

    Family of a young man bringing food to the home of a young woman to ask her parents for permission to wed.

  68. Guatemala Corny

    One day I returned home to find this... Apparently it was time for the corn harvest.

  69. Guatemala Happy Baby

    Juan José swings happily from his mother's back after a delicious lunch with family and friends.

  70. Guatemala Lesly Grooming Juan José

    Little Lesly combs the baby's hair...

  71. Guatemala Marbles

    Boys playing marbles.

  72. Guatemala Elian's Marbles

    Elian places his marble...

  73. Guatemala Afternoon Paseo

    An elderly Maya man walks the village paths in the afternoon sun. 

  74. Guatemala Helper

    A young Maya boy helps deliver a used tire for a project growing potatoes in stacked tires. 

  75. Guatemala Feria

    A small village in the Western Highlands celebrates it's annual fair by decorating the church and dancing in costume

  76. Guatemala Secret

    Hendrick, my host brother, shares a secret with me while I try to teach him a card game. 

  77. Guatemala Mucha Mazorca

    Hired day workers harvest and sort corn ears from dried stocks in the Western Highlands of Guatemala

  78. Guatemala Proud Abuela

    A proud grandma poses with her youngest grandson on her back while another granddaughter peaks out shyly from the adobe house.

  79. Guatemala Carol Ventura talking to La Jacaltequita members

    Officers of La Jacaltequita and I visited weavers in outlying villages twice a year. Here I’m discussing hair sashes with some of the members of the local chapter. The long hair of the Jacaltec women is wrapped with the same backstrap-woven hair sashes that they sold through the cooperative. American friends accompanied me on this trip to Limonar (a 6 hour walk from Jacaltenango) in 1979, including Anne Mulbry Cordon, the photographer.  

  80. Guatemala Super Moon on Top of a Volcano

    I took this photo on top of Volcan Tajamulco, the tallest volcano in Central America (Guatemala).  We climbed it the night that the moon was at its closest point to the earth and it made for some great photos.  This is a photo of other PCV's enjoying the view.  

  81. Guatemala Above The Crowd

    A child in the Aldea of Pahaj leans over the top of schools fence to see the parade for Carnival.  

  82. Guatemala Age and Beauty

    A local woman in my training town, San Antonio Aguas Calientes. 

  83. Guatemala Sisters

    Sisters at a Cajolá festival.

  84. Guatemala Charla

    Some of the women in the group before an ice-breaker.

  1. Guatemala La Gringa

    The heat rising from the pavement was visible as I made my way along the winding road. The smell of kerosene hung like a cloud around my head in the stagnant air. Breathe in, breathe out. One, two, one, two; all of my efforts focused on the common goal of putting one foot down in front of the other as I made my way up a rise. At the top, salvation awaited me in purple shorts and a dingy Comunicaciones fútbol jersey. Don’t stop now. Almost there. The muscles in my calves winced as I begged the...

  2. Guatemala My Peace Corps Service--Avoiding War Through Service

                    Like some Peace Corps Volunteers of an earlier era, my decision to join the Peace Corps was shaped by the events on the ground when I volunteered.  In the 1960s, it was the Vietnam War and the draft; the Peace Corps was one way to defer draft eligibility.  For me, in the 1980s, it was AIDS; the Peace Corps was my way of avoiding that “war” of my generation, my way of deferring being drafted into the AIDS epidemic.  In both cases, volunteers were hoping to avoid death while man...

  3. Guatemala Meet The Parents

      I got an unexpected but very pleasant surprise when my dad called me last saturday night. “I have someone here that wants to talk to you,” he told me from his house in Jersey City, New Jersey. He handed the phone over, and to my amazement I was greeted by Katarina, the mother of one of the teachers I work with here in the Guatemalan highlands. I was so shocked at first by the connection between these two previously seperate parts of my life, it took me a few moments to understand wh...

  4. Guatemala Rocking the Vagina Monologues Experience Chapin Style

    I had never seen the Vagina Monologues before but it’s safe to say that I had a pretty good idea about what this type of play would consist of: vaginas, sex, orgasms, lack of orgasms, etc.  Sure, it’s invigorating to discuss these topics among American women but I kind of felt like it was preaching to the choir; to speak to the true meaning of the Vagina Monologues I felt it necessary to bring along women who continue to see sex as too taboo to discuss: my counterparts.  When else would I ha...

  5. Guatemala This Little Piggy...

    For Christmas my family decided to slaughter their pig. They got the pig as a tiny piglet just as I moved in so I have watched it grow and fatten over the past few months. A pig for Christmas is very special for them... Last night they told me they would be inviting the entire family over early in the morning to begin cooking and preparing to make tamales. While I couldn't help but feel for the doomed porker, I remained as culturally objective as possible on the matter and crawled into bed....

  6. Guatemala Telephone Talk

    Talking on the phone in Guatemala is always an awkward exchange. You can be confident that the person on the other line will answer the phone by saying “aló” which sounds like “hello” with a spanish accent. I have two theories on the word “aló.” Since the word means hello but is exclusively used when answering the phone I'm convinced that either A.) Spanish speakers made-up the word after the invention of the telephone for the sole purpose of answering calls like the American inventors demons...

  7. Guatemala Blackout

    I am writing this using a battery powered lantern that Dad sent me in one of his many packages. I usually reserve this light for night time showering. The electricity has been out for the past hour so it's working overtime tonight. Luckily, I still have 2 hours 29 minutes left on my Mac battery and my internet runs through the cell tower. We get blackouts about five times a week during the rainy season. It's not raining right now, so I am not sure what caused it this time. To be honest, thoug...

  8. Guatemala Let's Talk About Sex, Baby.

    I was getting blank stares from a sea of uniformed fifteen-year-olds as I fumbled through explaining how AIDS doesn’t actually kill an infected person- opportunistic infections are what inevitably bring about the demise of the patient. It was a struggle. I felt like I was explaining the process well but I didn’t get a single reassuring nod from the crowd. I hesitated and then turned to my counterpart for the HIV/AIDS training I was conducting for help. In previous sessions he was quick to jum...

  9. Guatemala Jesus Cristo

      One great thing about the Peace Corps is the opportunity it affords to meet amazing people, both host country nationals and other Peace Corps volunteers. Ask any volunteer what enabled them to endure the taxing environments and situations they find themselves in over the course of two years of service, and I’d bet most would say, “the people.” I don’t know how I could have ridden this emotional roller coaster this long without my fellow volunteers. We grow together, celebrate our gains toge...

  10. Guatemala Human Washing Machine

    Today I did a monstrous load of laundry. For the past two weeks I had successfully ignored the increase in empty hangers in my “closet” but, when my laundry basket began to overflow last night, I decided today i’d roll up my sleeves and get it over with. Laundry is an internal struggle for me. Every time I’m thirty minutes in to washing my clothes, when my arms start to ache and I look up to see only half of my clothes hanging to dry, half still wet in a huge bucket with detergent, I think to...

  11. Guatemala Who Will Stop The Rain?

    I was just about to settle onto my bed to watch a movie on my lap top. It was a chilly and rainy night and it seemed like curling up to watch a movie was just the thing to do. As I began get cozy, I happened to look up and notice wet spots on the wall behind my bed. The water was collecting on the wall like beads of sweat and then dripping to the floor. I called Yolanda and Rodolfo's attention to it and they said it was nothing to worry about and suggested I just pull the bed away from the w...

  12. Guatemala Chucho de la Calle

    At 4pm on Monday I headed to the bus with my new puppy Chula which would take us back to the village from the pueblo. The bus didn't actually leave until nearly 5 and during this waiting period the puppy was particularly antsy and I took her off the bus a number of times to try to get her to pee, -but to no avail. The bus was parked on a rather unsafe corner and she kept trying to run off under the bus which made me nervous. Let me just be clear in saying that this dog had 2 rather long wind...

  13. Guatemala La Rosa

    On the eve of our site assignments I sat in the kitchen with Rosa over a dinner of eggs, tomato, and tortilla. I was antsy and excited to know where the next two years of my life would be set. Rosa looked up and said, "Grace, I am much more nervous than you are." Then her eyes began to fill with tears and she began a lengthy and beautiful admission of her gratitude for all the volunteers she has received. She pointed out that she had never had the opportunity nor even the notion o...

  14. Guatemala Rain on a Tin Roof

                The rain used to be quite calming before the beginning of the rainy season.  It would be something that I enjoyed sleeping in, especially with the tin roofs here in Guatemala.  Yet, now the overly loud slapping of rain against the slim pieces of tin that make up the roof is far less romantic than before.  Storms were always part of what I loved about the world.  Back home storms came far more subtly, gently rolling through in the distance and giving fair warning to all who lived ...



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“Sunset at the Railroad” by PCV Nicholas Baylor Hall. Namibia, 2011.