An unforgettable time in San Pedro, Lago Atitlan

Written by Nadine Zangerle on . Posted in Guatemala

Five weeks of hard studying is over but let me explain you a bit about our all day routine.

On Sunday we arrived to San Pedro and went straight to Orbita School. Our guest families were already waiting. Plan was to stay in two different families to avoid speaking German with each other.

My guest family was a 3 minute walk away from school with a nice view over the lake. I had a private bathroom and big clean accommodation. Michael’s room looked a bit different.

Next to the church a narrow road went directly towards his room. Without a key everybody from the road could just walk into the room and his room smelled like bad, wet dog. For the bathroom you had to go on the road and follow stairs up through the kitchen. The family had a dog which didn’t like the students and snarled all the time.

So we arranged that Michael moved in with me. Every morning we enjoyed breakfast with Hermelinda and Helene and the self-produced coffee and honey. Domingo and Hermelinda are married and she is doing all the cooking, cleaning and washing, which is a lot. I am not talking about supermarket sauces and tortillas. Everything is self-made, everything!

Domingo goes studying and afterwards with his father Juan into the mountains to take care of the coffee plants and the bees for the honey. Helene is Domingo’s mom and she is doing all the shopping. Every morning she goes to the market and buys fresh produce. Lollo, Domingo’s cousin, is TukTuk driver no. 86 and so funny.

On weekends Domingo organized some great tours for us and we went up with him and his cousin to the Indian Nose (la nariz del indio). With Boris and Maria, two other students, we drove on the back of a truck to Santa Clara. On the market we bought some bananas for our 4 hours trip.

The way up was steep and after our massive and long cold our heart raced like trumpets. But after a short and strenuous hike up we had a fantastic view over Lake Atitlan.

From Monday till Friday we had 4 hours school every morning. Our teachers Celeste and Juan-Carlos where extremely young with their 19 and 22 years but really experienced teachers. We had such a great time with them and learned a lot. In 5 weeks we almost finished book no. 6 and 11 times. Thanks for the patience guys!

Why does Spanish have so many different times? Those applications and irregular verbs floating freely in our hippocampus. But Becki, our new student companion in the family, experienced the same brain jogging and we kept us motivated.

Before we left, we celebrated Domingo’s birthday. After all this time we have to get ready and it is hard to say good-bye. We will miss the family and our teachers. For sure we had to treat ourselves a bit with fresh juices from our friends tienda Josefina. 

We had such a great time instead of staying two weeks with a family and two weeks in a hostel, we stayed five weeks with our Guatemalan family. Thank you all for this unforgettable experience. We miss already the Tortilla clapping at 6 o’clock in the morning.

Homestay: Family Isaac (Domingo, Hermelinda, Helena, Juan and Lollo)