Photo of the Week
Photo Title

« Back to Yak Board Archive Site

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week


WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16632
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-15 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-15 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Final Day in Pachaj

Jim Schmidt,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Posted On

02/15/13

Author

Jim Schmidt

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16628
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-14 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-14 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Waking up in a foreign country in someone else’s home to the unfamiliar sounds of dogs barking, roosters crowing, and vehicles passing by on the street outside can be a bit disconcerting to say the least, but this is how we started our first morning in Pachaj.

 

The boys arrived at Armando’s home (where the teachers & guides are staying) and relayed their experiences from the previous night.  Because of the variety of homes in which boys are staying, there were a variety of stories to report.  To use the term “culture shock” would not be hyperbole.  The realities of daily life here in Pachaj are quite different from anything most of us have ever truly experienced.  It’s one thing to read about something in a book or magazine or see it on a television and another to truly step into that world.  Because each of the homestays is unique to the host family and boys who are a part of it, I cannot write about them here.  That would be telling a story that only they can share individually.  But each of our stays has had a rose, a thorn and a bud, and this morning, this is how we talked about our experiences with one another.

 

Shortly thereafter, we walked a short distance to the edge of the forest in Pachaj to learn more about the Chico Mendes Project.  As an introduction, the boys were given the opportunity to play with a bit of destruction.  They were given lupas (magnifying glasses) and instructed to find insects, grass, husks, plastic bags, trash, etc. and use las lupas to magnify the sun on these objects.  I’m afraid that some of them were a little too good at this activity.  As they ‘burned’ various organic and inorganic materials, they were instructed to make observations in their notebooks of the byproducts of the intensified heat such as the color of smoke and the smell produced.  The boys were able to draw several conclusions about our diminished ozone layer and the challenges that face our planet.

 

Armando then told the entire group a story.  (I should note here that Armando speaks to us only in Spanish.  One of the Dragons guides translates for us but listening to Armando’s articulate elocution is a lesson in listening comprehension.  It has vastly increased my personal Spanish listening skills.)  The story that Armando tells us is one of the aguacote (avocado) and how a man is eating one when another younger man passes him by.  The man with the aguacote splits it in two and removes the large seed and tells the passing man that he will plant the seed to grow another avocado tree.  The passerby asks how long it will take for the tree to grow and the man says 35 years.  The passerby then asks how old the man is, to which he replies, “I am 80.”  The younger man scoffs at this and says, “But you will be not be here to see the fruit of this tree.”  And the older man says, “It is not for me.  I am planting this seed for my grandchildren.”  (Please note that my abbreviated interpretation does not do justice to the version told by Armando.)

 

Armando then explained the mission of the Chico Mendes reforestation project and the importance of trees in supporting all life on Earth.  He also shared the philosophy: “No a las armas. No a la guerra.  No a la violencia.  Pero sí a la inteligencia.”  We were then given a lesson on how to collect seeds from the Cyprus tree and the boys spent the rest of the morning collecting small pods from branches from which the seeds will be germinated and planted at a later time.  The boys enjoyed working on this worthwhile endeavor and one boy pulled a seed pod from a branch and before depositing it into a bag, he held it up and said, “This one is for my grandchildren.”

 

For more information about Chico Mendes and the Chico Mendes Project, visit:  https://sites.google.com/site/chicomendesproject/

 

After lunch, Mr. V and I walked the boys to their Spanish classes.  We had our own teacher like the boys and the next 2.5 hours proved quite challenging, yet fun for the two of us.  (I can’t say that our teacher had quite as much fun teaching us.  She definitely had the patience of a saint.)  The boys found it very amusing that we were now also students and that they were more experienced than us.

 

After classes, the boys returned to their homes for dinner.  I found out later that many of them visited local tiendas on the way home to supplement their dinners with sodas and chips.  (All of them reported that the food at their homestays is quite good, but I guess soda and chips are too good to pass up in any country.)

 

After dinner, the boys returned to Armando’s home where we all learned about the kotzij (a traditional Mayan ceremony).  After the beautiful explanation, we all took part in the ceremony in a nearby field.  It was an amazing experience, being part of a ritual that has continued for thousands of years.  We could not take pictures once the ceremony began, so the boys will have to describe it to you upon their return, but it was an unforgettable spiritual experience.  Armando explained to us that a large part of the ceremony was thanking the earth and our parents for giving us this incredible gift of life.  After beginning the day learning how we can ensure a future for the people who will live after us, it only seemed fitting to end the day thanking the people who came before us.

 

 

[post_title] => Settling in Pachaj (Day 2) [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => settling-in-pachaj-day-2 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-14 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-14 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16628 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Settling in Pachaj (Day 2)

Jim Schmidt,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Waking up in a foreign country in someone else’s home to the unfamiliar sounds of dogs barking, roosters crowing, and vehicles passing by on the street outside can be a bit disconcerting to say the least, but this is how we started our first morning in Pachaj.   The boys arrived at Armando’s home (where […]

Posted On

02/14/13

Author

Jim Schmidt

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16607
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Thinking of you!  All good in California!  We miss you all!

[post_title] => Hope You Are Having A Wonderful Time!! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => hope-you-are-having-a-wonderful-time [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16607 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Hope You Are Having A Wonderful Time!!

Adrienne Miller,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Thinking of you!  All good in California!  We miss you all!

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Adrienne Miller

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16609
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Hello Families,

 

Unfortunately, many of the yak yak postings and photos have been lost in our recent website failure.  However, the instructors, and Jim are working to repost some of the photos and words thusfar.  

 

I had the pleasure of checking in with the group only moments ago and can report that things are looking good today in Guatemala.  Everyone seems to be in good health and high spirits.  The group was engrossed in Spanish activities when I called, and everyone is settled into their homestays in Pachaj.  I've posted a few photos here of families from Pachaj to tide you over until the instructors post this evening.

 

Thank you for your patience!

 

Sending good vibes to our travelers.

 

Simon 

[post_title] => Lost Yak Yaks - in the meantime [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => lost-yak-yaks-in-the-meantime [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16609 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Lost Yak Yaks – in the meantime

SImon Hart,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Hello Families,   Unfortunately, many of the yak yak postings and photos have been lost in our recent website failure.  However, the instructors, and Jim are working to repost some of the photos and words thusfar.     I had the pleasure of checking in with the group only moments ago and can report that […]

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

SImon Hart

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16613
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Here are the remainder of the photos from our Pacaya hike, trip to Xela, and beginning of our homestays in Pachaj!

[post_title] => More photos to repost [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => more-photos-to-repost [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16613 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

More photos to repost

Simon Hart,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Here are the remainder of the photos from our Pacaya hike, trip to Xela, and beginning of our homestays in Pachaj!

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Simon Hart

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16614
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Hi Guatemala Guys! We're enjoying following the blog back here at school in our spare moments between cooking and visiting farms. We're having a great week, and we're so glad to see that it looks like you are, too! Can't wait to hear all about the trip when you get back. 

 

- Mrs. Jackson, Ms. O'Connor, and the Farm to Table Group 

[post_title] => Hi from the Farm to Table Intersession Group! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => hi-from-the-farm-to-table-intersession-group [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16614 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Hi from the Farm to Table Intersession Group!

Mrs. Jackson,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Hi Guatemala Guys! We’re enjoying following the blog back here at school in our spare moments between cooking and visiting farms. We’re having a great week, and we’re so glad to see that it looks like you are, too! Can’t wait to hear all about the trip when you get back.    – Mrs. Jackson, […]

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Mrs. Jackson

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16619
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Check out the live action... Cathedral vs Pachaj

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWFyd9ttkLo&feature=youtube_gdata_player 

[post_title] => Soccer Video [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => soccer-video [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16619 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Soccer Video

Juancho,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Check out the live action… Cathedral vs Pachaj   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWFyd9ttkLo&feature=youtube_gdata_player 

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Juancho

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16620
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Greetings fellow e-travelers.

 
It is Day 2 in Antigua. We have just finished breakfast and are getting our day packs ready for our afternoon hike up to Volcan de Pacaya where we will spend the night.
We are all very excited to visit this active volcano. Some of us (older folks) are less excited about the 1.5 hour trek up to our destination.
 
Spirits are high this morning, despite some general tiredness. (I'm sensing that the zombie stares we encounter when we knock on bedroom doors in the morning will not be news to any parents). But now the energy is kicking in and as I type this, I can hear a group of boys playing poker near the fountain in our hotel. A common question for me has been whether three-of-a-kind beats a straight. Ms. Roggero is the go-to for Spanish, Mr. V. for sports and I have found my niche in this group as the cards guy.
 
All of the boys have been very adaptive to our environment. They are inquisitive, thoughtful and often very funny. After our exhaustive scavenger hunt through the streets of Antigua, the boys presented their findings to our panel of esteemed judges last night after dinner. The judges were Luis, Juancho and Dhyana (our Dragons instructors). Among the many things the boys had to learn yesterday by asking locals in Spanish were: the first few lines of the Guatemala National Hymn (this one was challenging), how to buy a vegetable in the very busy market, what a 'paca' is and why it is called a 'paca' and how to salsa! The last one proved very entertaining and we seem to have several boys who may be well on their way to Dancing with the Stars.
 
I think everyone has been enjoying the delicious food of the region. I base this partly on the fact that once-full plates are completely empty by the end of a meal and that seconds are regularly welcomed, muchas gracias. The guys have also been vigilent in staying hydrated (and sunscreened) throughout the gorgeous sun-filled days. So we are in good spirits and good health in a beautiful country...what more could one ask for?  (Maybe a straight to beat your opponent's three-of-a-kind.)
 
We will have more to report when we are in Quetzaltenango...definitely a dragon story or two from our volcano adventure.

[post_title] => Antigua - Day 1 Recap [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => antigua-day-1-recap [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16620 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Antigua – Day 1 Recap

Jim Schmidt,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

Greetings fellow e-travelers.   It is Day 2 in Antigua. We have just finished breakfast and are getting our day packs ready for our afternoon hike up to Volcan de Pacaya where we will spend the night. We are all very excited to visit this active volcano. Some of us (older folks) are less excited […]

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Jim Schmidt

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16621
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

As I write this from our hotel on Monday night in Quetzaltenango (Xela), I can honestly say that everyone deserves the rest that they will (hopefully) receive tonight.  We have been busy travelers for the past two days and have encountered many triumphs and challenges along the way.

 

Before we left Antigua on Sunday, we had the opportunity to visit a local museum to see some Mayan artifacts and learn more about their historical significance.  It was another beautiful sunny day so several of the boys sat in the sun or near the interior fountain of the museum before we enjoyed another tasty lunch.

 

But then the real adventure began as we packed our bus and headed southeast to a small village called San Francisco (!) where we would unload our daypacks and head up the steep hike to Volcan de Pacaya (one of Guatemala’s few active volcanoes).  Before we began our ascent, many of the boys ‘rented’ walking sticks from local children and we were greeted by a friendly local dog.  This proved tricky as part of our instruction was not to touch or interact with the dogs that roam the streets in Guatemala.  And that was a hard rule to follow as this dog was so charming.  When the boys formed a community circle before the hike, the dog took a position right in the circle’s center.  And even though they could not touch the dog, the boys definitely showed their affection for it.

 

Word must have travelled in the local dog community, for as we made the very tiring climb, another dog appeared and followed our group every step of the way.  We were told that one way to tell a dog to get lost was to yell ‘Chucho’, so ironically, this became this new dog’s name to us all—Chucho.  When we reached our destination (with the very sweaty and out-of-breath duo of Vietmeier and Schmidt holding up the rear), several of the boys used their walking sticks to made a special drinking area for Chucho where they filled their empty plastic fruit containers with water for her.  And again, while none of us could pet her, she became our mascot for this journey to Volcan de Pacaya.  Chucho stayed with us by the campside fire last night (probably enjoying a bit of dropped dinner and a few bites of s’more), and she returned down the hill with us today.  I like to think that she was our protector during this part of our trip.

 

Chucho aside, the actual visit to Volcan de Pacaya almost defies description.  When we entered the area where our camping tents were erected, it looked like something out of a science fiction movie.  I think most of us were in complete awe and it was amazing to see patches of green life emerge from the blackened and burnt earth.  We watched the sun set, enjoyed a night by the fire, and then retired to our tents, some of us having better luck than others at getting a decent night’s sleep.  A few boys awoke before dawn to make the short climb to watch the sun rise and then once all of the boys were awake and we had breakfast, we made the (easier) descent back to our bus to begin the long 5+ hour drive to Quetzaltenango.

 

Driving west to this city was a huge challenge on top of the one we had just completed but the resilience of this group has been fascinating to witness.  Another part of our instruction with the Dragons team has been about putting our essential needs and group needs before the non-essential wants of our individual selves.  This can prove difficult for people of every age but I believe our group is getting stronger and stronger each day that we are here.  Through the challenges of yesterday and today, we see the boys becoming very loyal to one another (like Chucho) which makes the entire group much stronger (like a dragon).

 

We are off to Pachaj tomorrow morning where we will spend three days with members of the local community there.  After a few days of non-stop motion, I think we are all eager to plant some roots in this wondrous place. 

 

[post_title] => Guatemalan Dog Days [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => guatemalan-dog-days [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16621 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

Guatemalan Dog Days

Jim Schmidt,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

As I write this from our hotel on Monday night in Quetzaltenango (Xela), I can honestly say that everyone deserves the rest that they will (hopefully) receive tonight.  We have been busy travelers for the past two days and have encountered many triumphs and challenges along the way.   Before we left Antigua on Sunday, […]

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Jim Schmidt

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16622
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00
    [post_content] => 

After enjoying a tasty pizza dinner paired with live music at a restaurant in Xela on Monday night, the boys returned to their hotel rooms and, based on their smiles and attitudes on Tuesday morning, they all received their well-deserved rest.  A few of us had experienced some issues up until now adjusting to the elevation increase and the constant ritual of hydration, but by mid-morning, we all seemed to be more acclimated and balanced.  We did have a few cases of nausea during the first couple of days, but the first rule of the Yak Yak Board is: You do not talk about Yakking.

 

However, I’m pleased to report that we are all back to our normal selves and after loading our bus, we headed on a short drive to Pachaj which is about 30 minutes north of Xela.  The very first thing our boys did upon arrival was play fútbol with some local boys…a scrimmage (chamusca)…with the first half being our guys versus the local boys and the second being played by two teams created by mixing up all of the boys.  The games were very spirited and while the local Pachaj team had some home field and footwork advantages, Los Halcones played strong.  All of the boys would have played longer but the Pachaj boys had school in the afternoon and as our guys would soon find out—so did they!

 

After a welcome lunch in the home of Armando, the local man responsible for organizing the Pachaj homestays (as well as the reforestation service project we begin tomorrow), we all walked a short distance to the local escuela. Before we left for Pachaj, the boys were divided into homestay pairs and these pairs will receive private language instruction from a local teacher each afternoon. Most of the boys were thrilled to have the opportunity to practice their Spanish, but there was an ‘a-ha’ (or ‘uh-oh’) moment for them when they learned that the teachers only spoke Spanish or K’iche’ (a Mayan language).  

 

At the school, each pair of boys were introduced to their individual teacher and moved to a school room to begin their first lesson.  The teachers were obviously quickly able to assess each pair’s language skills and adapted their lessons accordingly using a variety of juegos (games) to engage their new pupils.  I find it quite fitting that the word for a pre-school, elementary or middle school teacher in Spanish-speaking countries is maestro/maestra, as these teachers were indeed masters of engaging our boys.  (We were told that one of the female teachers is only 16!)  After walking around the rooms and eavesdropping on the individualized lessons, Mr. V and I were inspired to pair up and will join our own teacher tomorrow afternoon.

 

Around 4PM, the boys returned from school ready to meet their homestay “mothers” and walk with them to their temporary “homes away from home”.  We are looking forward to hearing about the boys’ first night experiences on Wednesday after breakfast.  As Armando introduced the boys to their homestay families, he said, “Tenemos solo una regla … Antes de que se vayan, tienen que hacer una tortilla.  Si no aprenden hacer una tortilla, se tienen que quedar en Guatemala.”  (We only have one rule…Before you leave, you have to be able to make a tortilla.  If you don’t learn how to make a tortilla, you have to stay in Guatemala.)

 

At which point, one of our guys said, “Está bien.  I’ll stay.”

[post_title] => The Rules [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-rules [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-02-13 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-02-13 07:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16622 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 274 [name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [slug] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 274 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 238 [count] => 22 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 9.1 [cat_ID] => 274 [category_count] => 22 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week [category_nicename] => cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013 [category_parent] => 238 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2014/cathedral-school-for-boys-winter-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week )

Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

View post

The Rules

Jim Schmidt,Guatemala Cathedral School for Boys - 2 week

Description

After enjoying a tasty pizza dinner paired with live music at a restaurant in Xela on Monday night, the boys returned to their hotel rooms and, based on their smiles and attitudes on Tuesday morning, they all received their well-deserved rest.  A few of us had experienced some issues up until now adjusting to the […]

Posted On

02/13/13

Author

Jim Schmidt

1 2 3