Saturday, March 2, 2024

Our First Day in Antigua

Faith in Practice surgical trip #798 has begun!  We gathered at PDX yesterday, boarded a very crowded flight at 12:40pm and arrived in Guatemala City on time at 11:00pm.  By the time baggage was claimed,  customs did their worst, and checking into the hotel, it was 1:30a.m. local time when I went to bed. So a long day.

We arrived in Antigua fairly early this morning and after a few brief words, we were let loose until a team meeting at 5:00pm then dinner.  

I'm sure everyone is impressed so far. . . 

Being back in Guatemala after 10 years is weird.  For one thing, I'm 40 pounds heavier (thanks COVID). But it's the dichotomy that always gets me here in Guatemala.  Last night we stayed at a luxury hotel and had a most luxurious buffet breakfast.  After loading on the bus, we made our way to Antigua while we watched beauty and poverty race by the window.

A group of nurses and I (three young women and one grandma) walked about and had a delicious lunch at a microbrewery.  We sat on the roof where we caught cool breezes and admired the scenery.  As the women prepared to wander and shop, Granny had had enough walking so I left our little group.  They gave me good directions and a peek at Google Maps. After I received helpful directions on how to get back to the motel I began to walk.  Unfortunately, I was hot and my hip hurt and I obviously did not digest all they told me.  Three times I asked for clarifying directions from strangers before I got to the motel.  But three times I was graciously given instructions with great gesticulations.  No one snubbed me.  No one looked like at me like I was an idiot.  I was just taken care of by strangers.  I'm back in Guatemala.

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