Saturday, January 17, 2015

Good bye Guatemala

Good-bye beautiful Guatemala.  We have loved our stay here in this lush green jungle and beautiful mountains but it’s time to go.  If we stay here any longer we will have moss all over us and we will mildew!!  We have had loads of fun in the Rio and have met some very special people, making lasting friendships that I hope we will meet again along the way. Unfortunately, I have not taken many pictures of the local activities but if anyone is really interested in what goes on, go to WWW. and you will see tons of pictures of all the events.  Harry and I happen to be in quite a few of them.  I had a new experience last week attending a baby shower for a young waitress at our marina.  Carina is a delightful girl carrying a boy due in February.  Not sure she will make the date.  Anyway, it was a lot like in USA. Showers with games, food, cake, opening of presents but much more lively. Another new experience was learning Mahjong.  We actually played quite a bit so we know the game but I am worthless at really making points.

I have to put in a word about the saga of the pool at our marina that we never got to swim in.  Last blog I sent pictures of the drama of finally getting it in the hole.  They had all the pump system installed and were filling the pool with great hopes that we would all get to swim and then suddenly a huge slit in the bottom where two parts of the fiberglass meet came apart.  All the water is gone and the pool a wreck.  So out it came and is still out.  See the pictures below.  The guys are now trying to put concrete on the bottom for the pool to sit on.  What a drama.  It will be another year before the pool is in and we are now gone. So our promise of swimming by Sept 8th was a fairytale.  We forgot it was in Guatemala time.

The pool being propped up with poles out of the water.  They are putting cement under it

Big crack all along the bottom where 2 parts meet
 I won’t miss Frontera, the town.  It is dirty, noisy and you have to go to 10 different stores each time you want to grocery shop.  The little tiendas have things you need and want but each one has just a few of those things.  I needed a Walmart fix where I can get everything at once.  There are many vegetable stands along the street and extremely cheap.  I can fill a basket with much fruits and vegetables and walk out paying $3-4.  Unbelievable!!!.
December was a very busy month for us but a good one.  We finished a bunch of boat projects.  I managed to buy a beautiful $225 sewing machine for $50 from a sailor who is selling his boat.  I was very excited and started sewing like mad. I made a cover for our grill, 4 new settee pillows and altered some other stuff.  

I was using pieces of material that I had to make these
We left for the states on Dec 19th and came back Dec 31.  We fly to Phoenix to have Christmas with Jenny and Karla.  Jenny and Jon just moved into a newly built house, which is just beautiful.  Karla flew in from Pittsburgh and Jon’s parents were there for the month in a rental house.  So we had a great time.  Harry was just getting over a cold and I caught it.  I tried not to let it get me down but it was a doozy and on top of that I developed conjunctivitis.  The day before we left, both girls had sore throats and stuffy noses.  As hard as I tried not to spread the cold, I am afraid I did.  We didn’t do anything real special but just spent quality time together, playing games and catching up.  We did do a lot of Christmas shopping and saw “Unbroken”.  It was good but not as good as the book.

Harry and behind him is Jenny and next to him is Karla.  Jon and parents are at the other end of the table.
I was taking the picture.  Not the greatest but ok.  Mr. Mountain man still has his beard
Our daughter, Karla, cut her finger very badly while trying to cut bandages for a first aid class.  How ironic is that.  She ended up in the emergency room because it would not stop bleeding.  She has been sending me update pictures of the finger (the nurse and Mom in me needs to see them).  Anyway, it is looking pretty bad so of course I have something new to worry about.  We’ll see what happens.

We left today after many goodbyes last night and this morning.  We anchored in Texan Bay about 12 miles down the river.  Tomorrow we go the rest of the way to Livingston where we check out of the country. Then we have to cross a big sandbar at high tide on Saturday afternoon.   We will then anchor out at a beautiful bay and then head for Belize on Sunday if the weather behaves.  It is only 40 miles but if the winds are high it could be a challenge.  We hope to do a lot of snorkeling in Belize and just hang out for a month.  The best part is, the sun finally came out today.  We were all wondering what that big yellow ball was in the sky.  We haven’t seen sun since we got back from Arizona.  As my daughter keeps reminding me, we are in a rain forest.  It’s nice to be out of it.

Not a great picture but very pretty view of the moutains as we were leaving the Rio

We had some hitchhikers all the way up the Rio on our safety lines.

Just another view of the beautiful Rio Dulce River

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