The Charm of Street Vendor Culture: Antigua, Guatemala transforms for Holy Week

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In the weeks leading up to Semana Santa, entrepreneurs from all over Guatemala have been eagerly anticipating the explosion of local and foreign tourism that occurs in Antigua every year during the Lent celebrations. As the population rises in Antigua with each passing day, vendors flock to the city in search of potential customers. With nothing but a small pile of charcoal, a rusty grill and a slab of cast-iron, women begin preparing food in the streets. Over open fire they make fresh tortillas, grilled meats, guacamole, rice and beat-salads which they market to passers-by from the side of the road. Observing the incredible resourcefulness of Guatemalans is nothing short of impressive.  Small cash businesses seem to emerge overnight as vendors flood the streets marketing heaps of textiles, elaborate rosaries, small toy sized replicas of the cucuruchos, and of course, typical Guatemalan food and candy. Continue reading

The First 24 Hours: Arriving in Guatemala

Part II of The First 24 Hours

* To read Part I first click here

 

6am or something like that

The terminal is beginning to fill with passengers who have absolutely no respect for all the bums hugging backpacks in the corner. Try to keep sleeping as I remind myself that every dollar I save is one more day of exploring the world. One more day before I have to go back to work.

9am

View of Volcan de Agua from Volcan Pacaya, Guatemala -- Karina Noriega

View of Volcan de Agua from Volcan Pacaya, Guatemala — Karina Noriega

My body is absolutely stiff. Even just a year ago I could handle these kind of nights with more grace and flexibility. I hate to play the ‘getting old’ but I am already feeling it. My body simply does not bounce back the way it used to. It behaves as if 20 years older than my true age thanks to a lifetime of pushing my physical limits as an athlete and adrenaline enthusiast. Another reminder of why I am not putting off chasing my dreams for another moment.

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