Volcan’ de Pacaya erupts at sunset

 

Guatemala is a country of severe contrast and I simply love it here. Although I don’t speak the language, I am managing to get around pretty well. I learn at least 10 new words per day and the maid who comes in a few afternoons per week is a true Godsend. She has helped me with my spanish tremendously.  Today she went to the grocery store with me and selected the items she needed for cooking and cleaning. When you say your prayers tonight, please think of her and send her blessings. She is such a kind and happy woman AND a great cook! Her name is Connie.

This morning around 1:00am I thought I was hearing loud music from a neighbor, I never hear ANYTHING from anyone, it was mariachi music, then I realized that it was an actual mariachi band that was down on the street in the plaza where mass is held on Sundays. There were about 15 musicians dressed up in the mariachi garb including hats and it was wonderful!  I couldn’t help myself…I went out on the balcony and started shouting “Bravo!!!!” and they all moved toward me on the plaza and played a song. I’m sure my neighbors really appreciated that! I have no idea why they were playing at that hour. It lasted about an hour and then all 15 of the musicians piled into an old van and drove off. There was one other car and it left too. 

We are trying  to get all our errands done by tomorrow, we are already well known at Paiz.  Maria and her family return  from vacation and we have been using their car…another incredible act of generosity. I’m not sure what we will do for transportation until we buy a car. I checked into renting one for three weeks and the cost was over $700, so we won’t be doing that. I might have to take a taxi to and from the office until we can get a vehicle. I am told that Taxi Amarillo (yellow–but they’re white) is the safest but it still makes me a little nervous. I’m sure it will be okay and it will only be for a few weeks, so I’m looking at it as another adventure!

Jerry is a little bored. There’s nothing to fix and no one to help and chat it up with 😦 But, he did find out where to find food samples, so that made him happy. He has always read the morning newspaper thoroughly, but I have never seen him read a book before now. He finished Nelson DeMille’s The Gold Coast in just a few days and is now deep into James Stewart’s Den of Theives, which is about the insider trading scandal of the 1980’s Wall Street. 

Right now, however, he is watching the sooners enter the field in the 2009 BCS game. He’s pumped that we get the broadcast of the game. But, again, the play by play is entirely in espanol. It’s funny really. And, yes, it’s another good opportunity to learn spanish. For me, I am going to settle in with one eye on the game and one eye on my book. 

Keep scrolling for some magnificent photos I took this evening at sunset.

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Pacaya is an active complex volcano in Guatemala, which first erupted approximately 23,000 years ago and has erupted at least 23 times since the Spanish conquest of Guatemala. After being dormant for a century, it erupted violently in 1965 and has been erupting continuously since then. Much of its activity is Strombolian, but occasional Plinian eruptions also occur, sometimes showering the nearby city of Antiguawith ash.Pacaya lies approximately 25 to 30 km south of Guatemala City.

The first image below and the above text provided by Wikipedia

 

Pacaya erupting in 1976

Pacaya erupting in 1976

 

 

 

 

These photos were taken by Mary from the apartment patio on January 8, 2009. 

Pacaya erupts at sunset

Pacaya erupts at sunset

Volcan' de Pacaya erupts at sunset

Pacaya-look for the smoke in the center of the image

Pacaya-look for the smoke in the center of the image

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