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getting in touch

Day 75: Getting in Touch with Locals (How I Roll, Part 1)

With language lessons, I was forced to be introduced to a culture each and everyday. Our teachers would take us out to excursions, and share their family dishes. It was easy because it was part of the program, so that meant there wasn’t any awkward breaking the ice that would come with finding randoms on the street.
March 17, 2011 · Continue Reading · 8
mystery faces

Day 39: Six Degrees of Separation in a Small, Small World

Day 39: Mystery Faces
Who do I know that you know? Normally, I wouldn’t think to ask this question except there have now been several — almost freaky — incidents where I’ve come to meet someone in some random part of the world to find out they have encountered someone I know. It is a small freakin’ world, people, and… Read more
February 8, 2011 · Continue Reading · 12
guatemalan breakfast and coffee

Coffee, a Spice of My Life, Around the World

Day 2: Coffee in Bed from a Tim Tam Mug
Oh, coffee. We have a love-hate relationship, you and me. Sometimes, I drink too much of you; you make my hands shake and my stomach hurt. Other times, I drink a bit and I’m more productive than I could ever be, writing a zillion words per minute and staying on… Read more
January 2, 2011 · Continue Reading · 41

What has been the best year of your life?

In one of my conversation clubs in school here in Ukraine, I asked my students what the best year of their life has been. Questions like these, followed with a simple, “Why?”, are a great way to get them all to talk (my main goal for my classes), while also killing a ton of class time. However, a lot of… Read more
January 15, 2009 · Continue Reading · 6

El Fin Del Viaje

El fin del viaje. After Copan, the end of the trip was inevitably drawing near. It sounds silly to say this, but we felt as though we had come full circle, in more ways than one. Not only were we exiting out of the same city we had arrived in nearly 8 weeks before, but this time our perspective of… Read more
February 27, 2008 · Continue Reading · 0
finca parais

The Gringo Tax

One of the most frustrating parts of traveling in Guatemala is never really knowing the true price of a service – a bus ride – or anything for that matter – a hotel room, a banana, or a shirt. It’s a little something we like to call a “gringo tax” since there is usually one low price for locals and… Read more
February 21, 2008 · Continue Reading · 3
jungle view

Welcome to the Jungle

After much deliberation, we decided our next stop after Tikal was Rio Dulce. We made our way in the morning to the place in Flores where the guidebook says is a bus stop, but in actuality it is just a travel agency that buys a ticket for you for the bus station in Santa Elena. The only reason we decided… Read more
February 18, 2008 · Continue Reading · 4
mexican candy

Money. Money for the school.

Normally, when in Guatemala, Brian and I would encounter countless kids on the streets that would break our hearts – begging for something, anything, just a measly 1Q for whatever worthless piece of junk they had in their hands. It is for these kids that we would really, truly want to help out. It’s amazing to see how a piece… Read more
February 4, 2008 · Continue Reading · 0
spider in my room


As we sat at dinner, I started to feel a slight tickle in my shirt. The tickles kept coming and going, while I scratched and attacked in between sentences. Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore. “I have ants in my bra!” There are few things I hate more than insects. I knew that coming to Central America could pose a… Read more
January 31, 2008 · Continue Reading · 0

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