return of the traveller

It's been just over a week since my Guatemala-traveller returned, a little thin & worn-out, but very excited about all he'd seen and done. We've rested him & fed him up and he's about ready to take off again.

His blog is in my list of links, Jungle Jim Journeys, and it's an interesting (if poorly spelled) saga, with just a few of his many excellent pictures.

As a projected 10-15 cm of fluffy snow descends, I find myself wishing for the warm, although not in Guatemala, please & thanks.


one trip done, one progressing

I did eventually hear from my traveller, who had some difficulties with his connection in Guatemala, but has been emailing regularly ever since, mainly from Xela, where they have been building cooking/heating stoves in the highland villages, in partnership with AMMID, a local women's organization. It isn't all hard labour though, since they've also been touring a bit, both in the mountains and the tropics on the Pacific coast, and have the last few days for a bit more sightseeing and shopping. My curiosity as to what he'll return with is growing daily. Guatemalans are famed for colorful weaving and other Mayan crafts, and their coffee is superb. I also have it on good authority that they make excellent rum, and plan to drop a few hints for his shopping bag!

He reports that they have had good weather and wonderful food, but that all of the coffee must go for export since the local version is of the Nescafe variety. Too bad that the locals can't enjoy their own produce. It's a crazy world. Their team, many of whom have been doing this for several years, gets a warm welcome and amazing hospitality from the local communities. I really like hands-on aid organizations, they're the best.

My own trip, to Jacksonville FL, went extremely well. I managed the 2.5 hour drive from & back to Orlando quite well, although it was a little stressful. I'm not accustomed to driving such a long time, and the rest stops weren't frequent enough on the interstate highways. A couple of times I didn't think I'd make it to the next one, but I did. Drove a Toyota Yaris, not bad but I wouldn't buy one. Uncomfortable.

Visited friends I don't get to see nearly often enough, although we email regularly. They've got a place to the south of Jacksonville, also a beach house above Daytona. I spent the week with my friend as she shuttled kids to & from events, we saw a couple of films (The King's Speech & Black Swan), visited the beach house, toured parks & museums, and just spent time together chatting. It was lovely. I wish she lived down the road instead of hundreds of miles away.

Meanwhile, all was well at home on my return, and I'm awaiting the return of my traveller on Saturday. I hope his connections are good, and on time.


no news is good news?

Haven't yet heard from my traveller, who should be in Guatemala & well on his way by now. None of the other bloggers have posted since arriving though, so I'm assuming that they've all got there ok & are (a) too busy (b) not in the vicinity of an interente cafe (c) not thinking about blogging!

The other traveller is a little nervous about tomorrow's trip, but once on the plane the jitters will no doubt vanish.

And as I said above, no news is good news!


rattling around

My house feels very big and empty today. I'm used to being the one who goes away!