Guatemala Day 10
My morning began with my hour-long ritual of coffee, dog-feeding and writing at Casa de Benjamin. I warmed up the water heater for a morning shower today and hopped in at the end of my normal routine.
The shower – rub is really quite extraordinary. Built into the ground, you step down into an over-sized tub area, built of flat-sided slate-like rocks, with cement mortar keeping the shape. Then there is a border of garden area surrounding the tub with various plants growing. On one side of the wall there is a formation of boulders roughly 4 feet high that actually makes up the wall and extends outdoors.
As soon as I had the shampoo lathered in what little hair I have, the water began to spurt and went dry, leaving me there naked and cold. Not the morning I was hoping for, but at least I can be grateful I had already had my coffee!
There was enough water in the pipes leading to the kitchen sink to rinse out my hair. I went outside in my towel, to the outdoor sink area, where the water pump is situated. i examined it as if I knew what I was looking at, but soon gave up, seeking a sympathetic ear with the dogs.
I made my way to LaPaz, where there was already quite a morning crew gathered. Comila, Randi, BeDontin and some of the other yogis. I ordered my usual Ensalada de Fruito with only bananas and a caffe. Then I used all my wits to pull together what little Spanish I know, in combination with pointing and sign language, and finally resorting to English when necessary, to explain that the water was out at Casa de Benjamin. After a couple of exchanges they figured out what I was trying to say and made a phone call, presumably to Sebastian.
I sat and chatted with some of the yogis and enjoyed my breakfast. Some of the yoga crew had already departed for their next destination or Guatemala City for the airport to return home. Those remaining either hadnÂ´t left yet, or were visiting the yoga farm near Santiago today.
I made my way for the Internet Cafe up the path to make my daily blog post and make sure that Facebook was still running without my regular updates. It was!
Katey, JoshÂ´s friend who teaches at the Waldorf school in town, stopped by the cafe. She recognized Zeus and Shanti waiting for me on the path and I had discussed with Andy perhaps sharing my shuttle on Thursday morning with her.
Zeus, Shanti and myself headed up the hill into town. I watched the soccer match for a bit and then decided to see if I could find Andy and AnnieÂ´s house on my own. I knew it was somewhere near the school, which was directly up the hill from the stage, so I ventured westward on the road. I tried a couple of paths continuing up the hill, as I knew Andy and AnnieÂ´s house to be, but I was unsuccessful. I walked through a short maze of local neighborhood, with a few townspeople and their dogs, all barking at Zeus and Shanti, who simply walked by with their tails wagging at a pace that spoke their comfort level. We ended up near Blind Lemons, giving me a frame of reference to return home.
It was around noon and I stopped back at BenjaminÂ´s to check the water. Still none, so I headed back to LaPaz to check their status. The lady in the kitchen made another call and said that somebody would be over by 2:00. I sat for a hwile and ordered a smoothie – banana, papaya, strawberry and pineapple. ItÂ´s really hard to go wrong with all the fruit in this village!
I went back to Casa de Benjamin for my afternoon siesta, hoping that the water would be back online by the time I woke. I got up an hour or so later, and the water was working again! I was ecstatic and prepped the shower and enjoyed an extra long time under the hot water.
I went for a walk and stopped in at Blue Lili to chat with Christina for a bit. We talked about her 6 weeks in Mexico living in an artistsÂ´commune, playing soccer and learning English. She talked of feeling sad that so many friends had recently departed and the nature of living in a transient area like San Marcos. SheÂ´s been here several weeks so far and seems determined to make this her home for at least the near term.
I stopped with the path-side ladies who sell fruits and vegetables from their garden. TheyÂ´re always friendly and smiling and I always say hello and “Benuos Tarde” or “Benuos Dias” depending on the time of day. This time, however, they had dragon fruit! IÂ´ve only been told of it, but itÂ´s rumored to be spectacular. I purchased a couple along with a couple of bananas. It felt good to finally buy something from them.
I also had to make a trip up to the town centre to purchase some toilet paper. They sell it by the roll and it comes in a brown, non-bleached color. ItÂ´s sort of like the texture you find in public restroom paper towels. I purchased two rolls at a cost of 3 Q.
I stopped at home to drop off my purchases and read for a bit, then headed over to LaPaz a little early to socialize and get dinner. The yogis were gathering and had just returned from their trip to the yoga farm. They talked of the farm and how nice it felt to be done with their training course. Guya, the little pup, continued to torment Zeus and Shanti, but Zeus has snapped at her with less frequency.
I sat down and chatted with a new hotel resident, Brenda. SheÂ´s from a small town in Wisconsin between Madison and Milwaukee. Her travel mate arrived and the two of them departed. Shortly after the yogis left for a planned dinner at Fe. Around the same time, Sol arrived and sat with me.
Sol is the French Canadian from Montreal whoÂ´s been living here in San Marcos for 15 years. Tall with long hair and a beard, I think of him as Jesus, though I keep this to myself! He tells me he likes my energy and asks about my spiritual life. I tell him about my recovery and how IÂ´ve been spirtually-based since I got clean 6 years ago. I had asked him the other night at the going-away gathering at Il Gardino what sort of body work he does, as I knew he did massage. He tells me that he specializes in water massage and Thai massage. He explains that the water massage is really a great meditation, as well as physical relaxation. ItÂ´s performed in the lake, floating on your back, with the masseur performing the work while standing on their feet. HeÂ´d like me to try it, but diving into the lake seems like too big a step for me and I tell him I would probably be more comfortable with the Thai massage. We set a tentative time for the following day, depending on a class heÂ´s teaching and how many participants attend.
Sol also talks of society and problems as a human race. He thinks there may be a change in 2012 or sometime soon, in which the system will crash and we, as humans, will have to evolve. If not physically, evolve as a race in the way we treat each other, how things are governed, etc. He tells me that he thinks we may evolve mentally in the form of ESP, telepathy and / or energy manipulation. Sounds far out, and I am open to his ideas, but I doubt weÂ´re all going to become telepathic at one moment in time.
Sol departs and my dinner arrives. Soup and veggie pizza with the standard LaPaz salad. They have some cake made tonight, so I enjoy that as well with some green tea. While eating I read a WIRED magazine article that a friend passed along. It profiles AA for itÂ´s 75th birthday and talks of various brain chemistry studies that may correlate to successful sobriety found in AA. ItÂ´s interesting, but I think weÂ´re a long ways from determining the actual chemistry of God.