Friday, March 14, 2014 we snuck away with our good friends the Burbidges. They needed to make arrangements for a Christmas gift for one of their family members so we were off to Antigua. Antigua was once the capital of Guatemala but after all the earthquakes and such...the city was left behind and Guatemala City became the main attraction. Antigua has remained a favorite tourist site and the streets were full of North Americans walking and shopping and touring the favorite spots. We traveled first through the city into Jocotenango for a wood shop that the Burbidges were familiar with, Noah's Ark and the Apple Factory. ( Jocote is a special fruit that is grown in the area. They were out of season so I was not able to try one but Hna Herrera from the office says they are delicious with lime,salt and pepino, so I will have to try this delicacy at a later date(Oct-January).
For the most part, Antigua is just like my favorite stomping ground.....Guanajuato, Mexico. So you know how Presidente Cox felt about this trip. There was a Central plaza where people gather outside a big Catholic Church, unique shopping that is catered to North Americans, colorful buildings with barred windows
and ugly outside facades but beautiful interiors, street vendors everywhere peddling their wares. We ate lunch on the rooftop of La Posada de Don Rodrigo. The view was amazing, we could see the back side of volcan Agua and the surrounding mountains. But the best part was the view of the rooftops of Antigua.
This restaurant is famous for their marimba players. We enjoyed our serenade during our lunch and Hna Burbidge and I even had opportunity to try out our musical talents.
It was an enjoyable trip that needed to come to an end before I was ready but interviews were waiting at the CCM. So home we went.
These are pictures of our exercise facilities.
We have 2 groups or districts, one exercises for 30 minutes at 7am and the other takes the 3pm slot. Basketball is a favorite sport here and volleyball has replaced soccer because of all the injuries and the competitive nature of the sport. I love the early morning hours. I walk the premises of the CCM and pick up trash from the day before.....ride my bike and then finish up with the illiptical.....It is great fun to share this time of day with the missionaries. The weather is perfect and I leave every morning with this incredible sense of gratitude in my heart for the beauty of the earth.
Okay, Bob gave me permission today to take whatever pictures I want so here comes the blog with a little more personality. Today is the last day before departures. These sweet Hermanas needed ziplock baggies for some of their personal items that needed to be packed so up to our apt we went and then took pictures in my office together. They were so delighted as we created this little secret picture ......(Hna Lopez is taking the picture with me and Hna Viera, Hna Quinteros and Hna Granadas) Oh how we love our missionaries.
We have created a fun tradition for birthday celebrations. I spoke with Hno Burbidge about developing somesort of birthday culture for us and this is what he came up with. Today was Hna Ayala's 23rd birthday so the Commissioner Cumpleanos Misional(Hno Burbidge) delivered a birthday cupcake to her followed by Hna Burbidge on the flute and Pte Cox and I singing .....Of course the missionaries join in and it has become a fun little birthday culture. This is our second week and we have already celebrated 2 teachers, a kitchen staff and 3 missionaries. We try to do whatever we can to create a little family fun.