Sunday, August 31, 2014

August blog:

Well after a whole week of Spanish lessons, we know tons of words but not really great at putting sentences together and every time I say something to someone in Spanish, they look at me like I have 2 heads.  Then Harry repeats it and they understand so I am feeling a bit self-conscious but I keep trying.  We left Lake Atitlan with heavy hearts.  The place is just drop dead gorgeous. 

The palapas where we took Spanish lessons

My instructor, Veronica

Harry's instructor, Louis next to him and then 2 students behind him
 We have been back on the boat for a while now and working on our next trip.  We are trying to do a Spanish lesson with each other over coffee each morning.  It’s a bit of a comedy scene and I am glad no one can hear us.  Other than that, all we do are boat projects, swim, read and play games with the other cruisers.   All it does is rain.  We had a really huge storm a week ago losing electricity on the entire Rio Dulce  area for 48 hours.   When these storms arrive, boy, hold on to your heads!! 

Harry and I did go horseback riding in the country side.  It is a fundraiser for an animal rescue shelter.  The people own a ranch with 6 horses and a menagerie of rescued animals including 22 cats, 2 gray foxes, a weasel, dogs, and other assorted animals.  She also rescued a 25 pd pig who had been run over by a truck.  His name is Freddy and his back legs are paralyzed.  You will see in the picture how ugly he is and now weighs huge amount.  He drags his legs along and waddles over to a swim hole.  Amazing.  It is quite a place. Pam heals and feeds all these animals with the money she makes fundraising.  It is quite an operation they have going.  So we rode horses for 2 hours up and down trails, across a river, and through a small town while all the children waved to us.  See pictures below.
Harry trying to get his horse out of the stable

The motley group as we start out

Hank and me.  Not quite ready for prime time

Pam, who runs the rescue program and was for many years a cowgirl in Texas, winning national rope throwing contests. She reminds me a very good friend of mine, Terry

Freddy, the paralzed hog.  He really is ugly but sweet.

We ended up having to move out of Mario’s Marina because after 30 years, it is closing.  The owner of the property wants to sell it.  Marios is a bit of a legend and has been the mainstay marina for many years for the cruisers.  It was always the one everyone wanted to go to because of all the social stuff going on.  So it is very sad.  We are now at MAR marina which is     quite modern and very large.  The big benefit is we can now walk all over and into town.  I am getting Harry back into power walks in the morning.
We have just bought our flight tickets for Peru.  Hugely expensive but we figure we might never get to do it again so we leave Sept 12 (our wedding anniversary) and will be gone until Oct 7th.  We fly to Lima and then bus it south through lots of dessert, Lake Titicaca and the Sacred valley at Machu Picchu.  When we get back to Guatemala City, I will fly directly to Pittsburgh to see Karla and go to my 50th class reunion in Ohio. (Ok, so I am old and now you all know my age).  Harry will bus it home.  It is going to be a very adventurous 2 months.  

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