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14 June 2008 @ 08:29 pm
Day 1 - 11 June 2008
Awoke early before 5am to dress and get to the airport by quarter of 6. Flight to Miami passed nearly without notice. I certainly do not remember it now, only days later. With a layover filled with bad airport Chinese food and annoying Christ-driven missionaries headed toward my beloved Guate, I had plenty of time to anticipate the days ahead. Tried to sleep on the plane, but was plagued by waking dreams of exploding intestines and assholes. Really.

The thing about most sorts of travel in anonymous groups is that nearly everyone has something in common, but may not discover it until their last 30 minutes or so together. And so it was after the plane landed in Guate and the dozen nearest people and I discovered that we were all from the greater DC Metro Area. That includes researchers, Guate nationals, and plain old Americans. Strange.

The trip from the airport to Antigua was effortless. After I disembarked the plane, pissed, got my luggage and breezed through customs, I followed the line of passengers to the rest of the world. We were positively bombarded with young men holding signs stating boldly ANTIGUA PANAJACHEL LAGO and things like that. I simply found the best looking signholder and screamed, How much... He replied, Ten dollars... And I said, Let´s go...

Found maybe the second most depressing hostel room, ever, through my stuff on the bed, and went for a stroll around the town. Promptly lost, I stumbled into a Neurotics Anonymous meeting. Yes, Neurotics, not Narcotics. Interesting. Wandering lost around Antigua late at night was a little unnerving, but I survived. This guy kept hassling me, at various points in time, and finally I kinda yelled, NO! And he made some annoyed sound, like a horse with nasal congestion neighing, and kept moving.

Day 2 - 12 June 2008

I think it was this day, or maybe the next, when I awoke to the worst heartache. Hard to describe, except for perhaps, folks who have ever awakened to a ton of bricks sitting on their chest.

Today, I tried to find a longer term place to stay. The depressing hostel on the far corner of town just wouldn´t work for too much longer. Went to my favorite cafe from last year, Rainbow Cafe, where the waitress had remembered me the day before, and made some phonecalls. My cellphone is, however, a total piece of trash, and decides to work whenever it, not I, gets the notion.

Tonight, while journaling and feeling generally sad, I experienced my first earthquake! Yes! It really just felt like I was drunk or dizzy, until I noticed that the mirror securely fastened to one of my plaster walls, was bucking wildly. Cool. Easily the most exciting thing that happened to me all day.