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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011


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I never thought that I would feel the Dragons mantra of "packing light" the most when I came back home. Now that I'm here in the United States, here in St. Louis again, I feel... heavy. Not physically, of course--but mentally, very much so. I am not used to doing different things here in St. Louis. I pretty much never spend that much time outdoors here in St. Louis. I was light, free, and ready to do anything that was planned out for me in Guatemala. Now, I am tied down by the lack of opportunities to do new things every day, and the overwhelming feeling that eating, sleeping, and spending time in the house are the things that I spend 99% of my time on.

My thoughts are essentially in this one question: How do I figure out how to deal with, and even how to change, how I've been living for 16 years? I know that this weighed-down lifestyle is the lifestyle that I had before. It is the lifestyle that I chose. Now, I have the option to become a different person, because it has become much more clear to me the kind of person that I always have been. I see that, for the most part, I was lazy. I liked to spend my time on Facebook and hanging out with my friends. Now I see all the opportunities I have to become someone else--now I see the promisein becoming a different person, in taking advantage of other opportunities. Maybe my lifestyle doesn't have to be so heavy in comparison to my life in Guatemala. I can spend less time grounded in my house; I can donate any stuff in my room that I don't really need; I can spend less time doing the same thing, day after day.

But I'm just starting to figure this out. Coming home from Guatemala began a long process. Traveling around that amazing country stirred up all my thoughts and feelings about life; now I have to decide how to guide all those thoughts and feelings as they start to drift back down into place, in order to be in a slightly different position than it was in before. How can I change how the pieces fall, and consequently, how I will lead my life from now on? Can I become closer to the person that I want to be?

I guess we'll see.

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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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Drifting down back into place

Catherine Von Holt,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

I never thought that I would feel the Dragons mantra of "packing light" the most when I came back home. Now that I’m here in the United States, here in St. Louis again, I feel… heavy. Not physically, of course–but mentally, very much so. I am not used to doing different things here in St. […]

Posted On

08/2/11

Author

Catherine Von Holt

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As my dad put it, I'm going through withdrawal. Withdrawal from a continuously overstimulating way of life. Both my body and my brain were almost "addicted" to that level of intimacy and adventure, so when I returned home, it's like I had been thrown off a rollercoaster, and like my mom said, l landed in a field isolated and confused. I would say that's a very accurate way of putting my experience, except that there have been about a thousand other emotions that have come along with that; one of the biggest challenges today has been to sort them out.

The way I see it, the weird part isn't "being home", it's "being home". I know that sounds contradictory, and on some level it represents how my brain feels right now, and on another level, there is an explanation. Walking into my house last night wasn't as crazy of a feeling as I had expected. The color of the kitchen walls and the wooden staircase didn't feel foreign to me. Everything felt normal. That's what I mean: being inside my house seeing my bed and the tv wasn't weird because those things have been engrained into my memory for 17 years. The weird part was being home: physically being in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in the United States of America. It wasn't a good-weird feeling either, it was a "Oh my god what am I doing here?" type of reaction. Stepping into the comfort of my two-story house made the memory of living in a one-room house with a mayan family feel like something I made up; like it never happened.

I feel like a fish out of water, I can't breath and I'm constantly disoriented. Though I am with my family, I feel somewhat alone. Going from living with 14 other people 24/7 for a month, to living in my bedroom waking up to only 3 other people in the house makes me feel lonely.

This morning I woke up crying. I didn't have words to explain it; all I knew was that I wasn't with my dragons family anymore and I definitely wasn't in Guatemala anymore. I think the overwhelming emotion was loss. I am grieving because the adventure I had anticipated for so many months is over. I am also grieving the loss of my dragons family. And I am facing the realization that it will take time to re-adjust to being at home and that it may not be an easy or pain-free process.

Living in Guatemala, traveling everyday with 14 other people became my normal life, though it was far from ordinary, so coming home is what feels new and uncomfortable.

Today, I didn't leave the house. I've been too afraid to face the real "American" world. I haven't even told anyone I'm home.

I didn't know what to do with myself today. It's like I've forgotten how to act at home. I was a mess. I cried every time I re-lived the goodbyes. It was painful, but at the same time I fear that if I stop feeling sad, what am I going to feel? Will I stop feeling anything at all? I am so afraid of forgetting the adventure, my host families, my dragons family. It seems the more seconds that pass while I am home, the more unreal the trip seems. Being in Guatemala felt so real, why does it feel so distant to me now? I hate this feeling, and the feeling of not knowing. I want to be back in Guatemala with everyone anticipating a new day, a new adventure. But I am home.

Even though I am very upset, I don't think culture shock has hit me yet, probably because I still haven't stepped out into reality yet.

I'm afraid that all the things I learned and the motivation to make changes at home aren't coming with me from Guatemala because I don't feel motivated right now. I feel like moping around the house because I miss everyone and am overwhelmed by emotions. I want to feel inspired and I want to feel the way I did during our deep discussions in Guatemala. I hope I will soon and that this is only the intense adjustment period that is preventing me from doing so. I am incredibly sad to be done with dragons and not be in the beautiful country of Guatemala. It will be a hard process of letting go of the experience and allowing myself to move forward while, hopefully, taking with me the important lessons I learned. I'm not sure when I will be ready to take off my friendship bracelets or bead necklace from our dragons ceremonies, or put away the items from Guatemala. I'm not sure when I will be ready to accept that what happened in Guatemala is no longer happening; it's only memories.

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Best Notes From The Field, Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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Withdrawal

Emma Share,Best Notes From The Field, Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

As my dad put it, I’m going through withdrawal. Withdrawal from a continuously overstimulating way of life. Both my body and my brain were almost "addicted" to that level of intimacy and adventure, so when I returned home, it’s like I had been thrown off a rollercoaster, and like my mom said, l landed in […]

Posted On

07/30/11

Author

Emma Share

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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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Home?

Rachel Lieberman,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

Two days ago, thinking about the inevitable plane-ride home, I was just as nervous as the night before I left my home one month ago at 5:00 in the morning to catch a plane to Guatemala. Everything I was heading towards seemed unknown and intimidating once again. I wasn’t sure how I was going to […]

Posted On

07/30/11

Author

Rachel Lieberman

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We just wanted to take a moment to notify everyone that the Guatemala 4 Week Group B group has safelyembarked on their trip home after an amazing experience. In many ways the biggest adventure of the coursebegins now as students work to carry their experiences into their home communities and country. We thank you all foreverythingyou did to make these past 4 weeks such an inspiring success. On the part of our instructor team it has truly been a gift to have been able to travel, teach and learn along side this phenominal group of young adults. We ask that you all welcome these returning travellers with open arms,patiently encourage them to share their stories and be sure to share yours as well. Over the next weeks they will likely be internally piecing the learning and transformation they experienced.

Thanks you again from the bottom of our hearts.

Emanuel, Regina and Steve

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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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The next adventure begins

Streman,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

We just wanted to take a moment to notify everyone that the Guatemala 4 Week Group B group has safelyembarked on their trip home after an amazing experience. In many ways the biggest adventure of the coursebegins now as students work to carry their experiences into their home communities and country. We thank you all […]

Posted On

07/28/11

Author

Streman

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    [post_content] => We have very succefully finished the 3 day trek. We are very busy enjoying Lago Atitlan and wrapping up the last few days of our course... Just wanted to send a quick hello all of your ways and there shall be more to come shortly. 
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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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We have successfully finished the 3 day trek!

Streman,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

We have very succefully finished the 3 day trek. We are very busy enjoying Lago Atitlan and wrapping up the last few days of our course… Just wanted to send a quick hello all of your ways and there shall be more to come shortly.

Posted On

07/25/11

Author

Streman

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After another bittersweet departure from a town with which everyone felt connected and close, I write now from a small internet cafe in Xela. Upon our arrival in Pachaj, where we would find our third and final homestays, our instructors asked us to enter this experience with an "empty cup". In other words, we were being asked to hold on to all our memories in Guatemala up to that point, but put them aside during our five days in Pachaj. During those five days alone, we were not to compare our homestays to our first two or take this last one lightly, assuming that we had already experienced all there is to experience living with a Guatemalan family. I cannot express how happy I am now that I listened to the instructors then.

Comparing all my memories now, I know that my house in Pachaj was not nearly the size of that in San Antonio, nor was the view from the roof as beautiful. I didn´t have as many excited ând welcoming siblings and family members in general as in Chajul (my Pachaj family had hosted another Dragons student just two weeks earlier as opposed to my being the first homestay student ever in Chajul). Nevertheless, my experiences in Pachaj were unforgettable. One in particular that comes to my mind now is set in the local Evangelical Church. On Saturday night, my mom, Rosa, and my little brother Joshue, invited me to accompany them for mass. As in many churches, the mass began with songs and hymns in which everyone participated, along with a very uncomfortable hello to me, the only "gringo" in the Church, from the priest. But about 15 mintues later, the room was filled with loud prayers, mounringsand cries to los dios. I cannot forget the torutued voice of a man, who throughout the rest of the mass, would scream "Gloria, Gloria, Gloria". It was a very spiritual, indescribable experience to be in the Church that night. This was just one of the many experiences in Pachaj, which I would not have had without completely emptying my cup.

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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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End of Pachaj homestay

Brigitte Desnoes,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

After another bittersweet departure from a town with which everyone felt connected and close, I write now from a small internet cafe in Xela. Upon our arrival in Pachaj, where we would find our third and final homestays, our instructors asked us to enter this experience with an "empty cup". In other words, we were […]

Posted On

07/21/11

Author

Brigitte Desnoes

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Journal Entry from Pachaj:

I never thought that i would hear the morning call of a rooster in person, nor did I consider the possibility of it being right outside my bedroom. Even beyond that, I was under the impression that roosters called at sunrise, 6 or 7 in the morning. Well, I was wrong about everything. This morning, meaning 3:30 am I awoke to the loud, very clear, sound of the rooster sitting outside my bedroom window. At first it was cool, but after ten minutes of the redundant call I realized I wasn´t going to be able to fall back asleep, and it stopped being so interesting.

Having pet roosters and chickens is very common in Guatemala, especially in Pachaj because the houses are spread out among endless cornfields. The fields of corn, milpas, rise above head-height and line all roads in Pachaj. They create a maze-like feeling in the town; many students have gotten lost on the way to school. Yet, the fields offer comfort as well. I feel safe in this community, partially because it is protected by maiz but more importantly because of the warm people who live here. Dragones felt the warmth the moment we got off the bus. 12 maestras in traditional dress greeted us and led introduction games. After the games, the maestras performed a folk dance for us. It was clear that everyone was excited to host us in their town and to teach us their native tongue.

Before dinner today, I was invited to play futbol with my host siblings, host dad and a boy who lives next door. We played in the yard of a church and though it was small and covered in cow maneur, it served its purpose perfectly. Playing with the locals reminded me of what community means back home. Until coming here, I had a pathetic idea of what a community can be. In EEUU, for the most part, families keep to themselves and have limited relations with neighbors and other community members. Many interactions are done over the phone, but here there are no house phones and cell phones are everywhere but not abused like in the states. Kids are constantly playing ball in the street and occupying themselves with something other than television. The kids are a major part of communities in Guatemala and are given responsibilities that only young adults or adults have in the U.S. I reckon that the word ¨grown-ups¨doesn´t translate into spanish-- kids grow up the moment they can hold a machete or make tortillas.

After playing with many Guatemalan kids, I got to see the other end of Guatemala life during my third spanish class. Though my entire body and brain was exhausted from planting trees with Chico Mendez, I still learned a lot from this spanish class, even if it wasn´t the lesson my teacher had in mind. We walked about 40 minutes to my teacher´s grandfather´s house to hear the history of the region of Cantel, of which I understood almost nothing. He is an man of 84 years who speaks with a lisp because of a lack of teeth and changes the subject every two seconds. However frustrating it was to struggle to make out words, i am appreciative of him because he made an effort to speak spanish, not his native tongue, and was enthusiastic about having me in his home. It was powerful to be in his home, which consisted of one room with no light and the only chair was the seat of an old car. He told me that his house is made of adobe and is very strong and very old. The most memorable part was when he told me how content he is living in his adobe house with very few possessions. It makes me question the american way of life-- always needing more material objects to make life easier-- when this man is content with his way of life and his small, strong home. It makes me wish I had grown up with a less priveleged life so that it would be easier to let the ¨comfortable life¨go.

[post_title] => I Rose with the Rooster [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => i-rose-with-the-rooster [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-07-21 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=43474 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 322 [name] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 [slug] => guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 322 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 251 [count] => 83 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 18.1 [cat_ID] => 322 [category_count] => 83 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 [category_nicename] => guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011 [category_parent] => 251 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2011/guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 )

Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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I Rose with the Rooster

Emma Share,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

Journal Entry from Pachaj: I never thought that i would hear the morning call of a rooster in person, nor did I consider the possibility of it being right outside my bedroom. Even beyond that, I was under the impression that roosters called at sunrise, 6 or 7 in the morning. Well, I was wrong […]

Posted On

07/21/11

Author

Emma Share

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Entering Pachaj, I didn't really know what to expect. I thought I did, since our other homestay in San Antonio was also five days and I was guessing that it would be somewhat similar. And in many ways, Pachaj has been like San Antonio, but I also learned that usually, no matter how often you repeat something, each instance of really anything you do is unique. We don't have any more homestays, but I know that the upcoming trek and our disorientation days will be a new experience, and I'm looking forward to it.

When we first met our host families in Pachaj, it took me half an hour or so after meeting my host mom Leonza to realize that my host sister, Evelin, was deaf; and it didn't really change things as much as one might think it would. I was still able to communicate with her fairly well by indicating things and showing my meaning through body language. And, like all host family members I've had so far in the trip, the easiest way to communicate was through laughing. Laughing at silly things that I did, or if my Spanish was particularly pathetic at one point when I tried to talk to Leonza and she could see the confusion on her mom's face.

On Tuesday night, Evelin's friend Luisa came over, and we sat on my bed for an hour or two, and I communicated with both of them to the best of my ability, challenging my Spanish and my soundless communication, as well. Evelin suddenly got a bright look in her eyes and pulled out a t-shirt with the ASL alphabet on it, and she and Luisa tutored me with that, and a few things like "me gusta" and "mucho" and "gracias" in ASL, and every time I signed something, they would just laugh and laugh even if I had done it right.

The Chico Mendez Project is also something in Pachaj that I have thought about a lot. Armando, the incredible guy we've been working with in Pachaj, has very admirable courage and dedication to his cause. I've always thought/known that reforestation is important, but I've never really had an emotional connection to it like I do now. More than once, Armando has received death threats for supporting tree planting and the rights of the indigenous Mayan people to those trees because of the political implications that the government is not doing its job in complying with acts that administer funds for work like his (which, and it may be forward to say, it's not). I hope my friends will be patient with me for a little when I get home when I encourage them to support this cause. The moment when I had planted trees with my dirty hands and started to walk back down the mountain, and Armando talked to us about the history of the project, I realized the significance of what we had just done. It may seem so innocent, just planting a tree on a mountain, but it continues to put Hermando at risk. I hope that our trees will survive and Hermando will stay well.

Guatemala has been awesome so far. Thanks Mom and Dad for sending me on this trip, and thanks to all my new friends for being super cool. :)

- Catherine

P.S. I planted 10 trees on our first day of planting, and I dedicated each one to a friend/family member at home. :D

[post_title] => On the mountains by Pachaj [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => on-the-mountains-by-pachaj [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-07-21 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=43475 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 322 [name] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 [slug] => guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 322 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 251 [count] => 83 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 18.1 [cat_ID] => 322 [category_count] => 83 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 [category_nicename] => guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011 [category_parent] => 251 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2011/guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 )

Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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On the mountains by Pachaj

Catherine Von Holt,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

Entering Pachaj, I didn’t really know what to expect. I thought I did, since our other homestay in San Antonio was also five days and I was guessing that it would be somewhat similar. And in many ways, Pachaj has been like San Antonio, but I also learned that usually, no matter how often you […]

Posted On

07/21/11

Author

Catherine Von Holt

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It is pretty much a fact that the best thing about anywhere you visit is the food. At least it is for me. though i have always loved learning about a cutlure through museums and arcitecture, there is nothing like being given a plate of completely different food and being told ´buen provecho´. At first i was just an observer to the world of guatemalan cuisene. i would be handed a whole crab and be instructed to eat its lungs. i would do so willingly, but with little knowlage as to what i was actually eating and how long it took to make. And when i was given shrimp as a special birthday dinner i thanked them profusely, but had no idea what they thought of this food and how special it was to them. However, this week i got a small glipse into the kitchen of guatemala, with the help of my spanish teacher, Cati. We had started talking about cooking earlier this week. she asked me what i like to bake and i told her that i mostly make desserts. Thus i was introduced to tamales de cambrey. Let me explain: mostly everyone knows what tamales are. they are ground up corn, wrapped in a husk and cooked until they are slightly gummy. Anyone could see that Cati´s tamales were completely different. the first difference one would notice was the color. Tipically tamales they are a soft yellow, very close to white even, but not these. in her pacient and slow spanish Cati explained to me that the sugar we were using was pink because it is a tradition. it would make the tamales beatiful. sure enough, when we pulled the tamales out the pink sugar had turnd into fusia goop, visable even throught the pale yellow of the corn husk. the stupendousness of this dessert would become even more apparant as you took your first bite. the pink sugar was not only beautiful, but delisious as well. the raisins (or pasas) seemed sweeter than back home and you could taste the butter in the corn. For me these were not only a superb way to end my time in pichaj, but the first Guatemalan food i´ve made so far (besides tortillas, which don´t really count). i can´t wait to try more food and see more kitchens.

adios and buen provecho,

-sarah

[post_title] => Food, Glorious Food [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => food-glorious-food [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-07-21 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=43476 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 322 [name] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 [slug] => guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 322 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 251 [count] => 83 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 18.1 [cat_ID] => 322 [category_count] => 83 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 [category_nicename] => guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011 [category_parent] => 251 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2011/guatemala-mundo-maya-4-week-b-summer-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011 )

Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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Food, Glorious Food

sarah pratt,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

It is pretty much a fact that the best thing about anywhere you visit is the food. At least it is for me. though i have always loved learning about a cutlure through museums and arcitecture, there is nothing like being given a plate of completely different food and being told ´buen provecho´. At first […]

Posted On

07/21/11

Author

sarah pratt

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    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-07-21 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => A few days ago I was sitting on top of San Andres, a sacred mountain top  overlooking the tiny rooftops, ant-sized people, and rows of corn all  in the beautiful town of Chajul. The majority of people in Chajul only  speak Ixil, a Mayan language only spoken in three towns now, rather than  Spanish. On top of San Andres I was sitting near smoky, charred rocks  and melted candle wax used in Mayan ceremonies. People have been hiking  up to the space for years to perform rituals, praying to different gods  for specific desires: good harvest, rain, love, wealth, etc, refusing to  give in to ideals and pressures from the spanish. The people of Chajul  have struggled to maintain their traditions and culture. I was able to  stay for two nights with a wonerful family of eight open, friendly, and  extremely intelligent people. This large family lives with three beds no  plumbing, and a few lightbulbs that work some of the time. Every day  the mother of the family gets up at 4:30 to begin the long day of work,  along with the the help of her three older daughters to assist with the  cooking, cleaning, and care-taking of younger siblings. All of the women  wear beautifully embroidered, deep red clothing, hair wrapped up in  woven ties adorned with colorful pom poms, keeping it off their necks,  sweating in the heat of the open-flame stove that they are constantly  tending to keep their families fed. People in Chajul live a life that is  in a lot of ways very difficult and strenuous, but they live a life  full of tradition, ritual, and a rich history that dates back much  farther thatn that of the United States. It is a life that is truly  theirs: seprate from outside influence and pressure. Walking silently  past ornate, carved, religious figures and a magnitude of old wooden  benches in an old beautiful old church , we came upon an older lady  praying in the front. In the middle of the bright and sunny day she was  sobbing loudly; grasping the coat of the large Jesus figure. I felt  really out of place, innapropriately staring at a women I did not know,  pouring out her emotions. I do not know what she was saying, but despite  the language barrier, I felt as if I knew exactly what she meant. As  much as I felt like an awkward, outside observer, I felt the pain and  the desperation that she was releasing. Maybe it is much healthier, and  much more natirual to be able to express yourself out loud in a public  church without being bothered by who is listening, rather than being  locked up alone in a room at home, as it seems that so many people to in  the United States. Sitting on sacred Mayan terrain on top of San  Andres, I realized how incredibly thankful I am that the people of  Chajul have accepted me into their town, and into their homes. I was  able to catch a glimpse of a beatiful, wonderfully open people. I slept  comfortably on the cement floor, not worrying about beetles I saw  crawling in and out of torn pieces of blanket, and using my host-sisters  jacket as a pillow. I do not mis my bed at home, food from home, or  anything else I had thought I might. It is not about that. I love the  authenticity, and the rich history here. I keep thinking about huge  cities and factories and cars, and although I understand, it makes me  sad to hear people wanting to come to the United States. I want to tell  them that here are the huge, mystefying clouds, original languages, and  deep roots that hold such a high value to me. 							 							
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Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

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Chajul

Rachel Lieberman,Guatemala: Mundo Maya 4 week "B", Summer 2011

Description

A few days ago I was sitting on top of San Andres, a sacred mountain top overlooking the tiny rooftops, ant-sized people, and rows of corn all in the beautiful town of Chajul. The majority of people in Chajul only speak Ixil, a Mayan language only spoken in three towns now, rather than Spanish. On […]

Posted On

07/21/11

Author

Rachel Lieberman

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