Normally I will most likely not update my blog twice in one day, but since it is the day of arrival, I thought I would let everyone know that I am safe. I appreciate all prayers I received on the way down. My nerves left as quickly as they came. Once I got to my gate at the airport, I was distracted by writing my first blog. And then, of course, I love taking off in airplanes so that was fun. We were then given movies to watch. One of the best things, aside from prayer (if you believe in God, that is), is distractions when you are nervous. The end of the flight was beautiful. You could see the volcanoes!
I don’t really feel nervous anymore, like I said. It wore off and I impressed myself at the Guatemala City airport when I found out that barely any employees spoke English. I’ve been nervous about my VISA all day because I’ve been told and have read that Guatemala doesn’t require a VISA for 90 days (But I will be here longer than that- in which case I will have to leave the country or apply for an extended VISA), but last night when I checked in for my flight, it said I DID need a VISA. (I don’t, but this made me doubt myself). The lady asked me (in spanish) how long I would be here for. To me, although maybe it was just me assuming the worst again, I thought she was looking at me like I was suspicious. So I said “Estoy en Guatemala por seis meses, pero voy a viajar al Mexico despues de noventa dias.” And I didn’t stutter. After this, I was quickly in the hands of Máximo Nivel’s team members (who are super nice by the way) and got a lot of my questions answered (like if I brought too much luggage or not- He said I didn’t bring a lot for someone staying 6 months. Yay!) and then I felt as I do on any comfortable trip I take: Happy and excited.
Although, I quickly found out that my host family SPEAKS NO ENGLISH! Nada. They know “dinner” and that’s about it. This will be a lot harder than I thought! It’s a little intimidating to not be able to communicate at all, but at least they seem very nice. It’s definitely going to be challenging not being able to use English with them. However, the team members at Máximo Nivel speak English and I got placed at a house only a block away from there! How blessed am I? At the home stay there is a mom and dad, two kids and some other volunteers (They will only be there a few weeks though and I have my own room with 3 choices of twin beds. I also can choose to move rooms once the other volunteers leave if I like- How I understood all that, I don’t know! But that’s what I interpreted!). You have to put your toilet paper in the trashcan and not the toilet (Hey, it’s like a trip to Camp at Lake Sunset in NY!). The house is really cute, but no AC! AHHhhhh. At least I have 70’s weather and not 90’s. Oh, and you won’t believe the view I get from their roof. I wish I had a hammock hanger to put up there! Pics to come later.
I do also want to touch on more of what brought me to the decision to take this trip and write this blog, but I don’t want to do an overwhelming amount of posts in one day. I know everyone has their lives to attend to. So I will talk more about that in a later post.
In a nutshell, I’m safe. My evil “wait turn around now go home” nerves are gone. I am still going to miss people, but I feel comfortable enough to not worry for the moment. Besides, I’ve always had a thing for 7’s and I left on the 7th. I think that must mean it’s the start of an excellent adventure. Just have to get through the first few weeks of being uncomfortable! I am meeting a girl I rode in with hopefully soon, but since phones aren’t set up yet- I won’t know until she gets here.
¡Que tengas un buen dia!