Archive for October, 2010

Copan and Volcano

Author: Kristi

We got to the bus station to grab the bus to Copan. Little did we know what adventures this bus ride would have in store for us. While we were in the jungle it had rained heavily every night, making the roads very unstable. I was looking out the window at the gorgeous lightening storm that was in effect when one of the lightning bolts struck a tree right outside my window. It made an extremely loud cracking sound and sparks went flying, absolutely amazing. Further down the road we came to a stop, an awfully long stop. I looked at the window and saw buses and other vehicles turning around. Turns out there had been a mudslide that was now blocking the road. It was starting to look like we’d have to spend the night on the bus, and none of us had eaten. So, in the dark rainy night we ventured to a corner store and bought an exceptionally nutritious dinner. Jalapeno chips, hot dog buns, cheese, cookies and mini sausages of only God knows what kind of meat (I did not partake in eating the sausages).
Finally the bus made some movement and we were on our way again, some workers had cleared the path making it so we could continue on our way. Once in Copan at one o’clock in the morning, in the pouring rain, we tried to find a place to sleep. Most hostels we tried were full, but we managed to find one. The next day we changed locations to another hostel and decided to book a horseback riding tour. The horses looked more like donkeys and the tour guide only spoke Spanish. I don’t know what came over me that day but I was in the giggliest of moods. Watching Rich’s loco horse jerking him around and him freaking out was bringing tears of laughter to my eyes. Then looking to the other side and seeing Imran leaned back and talking to his horse like they had been mates for life, I was hysterical. I chatted with the tour guide who was babbling away and I was merely smiling and nodding understanding only a few words per sentence. By the end of the tour we had all gotten very comfortable on our horses and we were racing and cutting each other off (yes, I was still laughing).
Rich and I woke up early one morning to climb, the recently erupted, volcano Pacaya. We managed to get a great group and an insane guide, who suited us just fine. Once we hiked the hard part we were running and sliding down hills of loose volcanic gravel down to the volcano’s crater. We walked across hot coals to a large hole in the ground exposing glowing red hot lava. We took the marshmallows we had bought earlier and threw a couple in and watched them catch fire before even hitting the lava. Once we had all taken a few pictures we made our way back in a cloud of steam from the heat of the sharp lava rocks beneath our feet. We made a quick stop to roast some marshmallows on the rocks and our guide just used the rocks to light his cigarette. The way down was much faster than the way up, we all charged through the gravel and slid down the side of the volcano until we reached the bottom. We all stopped before getting into the bus to empty our shoes. Little piles of gravel formed from what had accumulated in our shoes.

So It’s Been A Year

Author: Kyle

A year ago today I left Canada hoping to escape my old life and start new. To get away from the constant work of my job and try to build a business I could run from the road. In my mind I know what criteria would make it work and I have a good idea of what it would look like when it is done, but actually getting it going, well that has been another story.

It is true the dollar goes further here, and that really does help, but it is also harder to work with no fixed address. And with debts back home and obligations to others my year of working abroad has been a very difficult and grueling challenge. I have been gone from living a dream to living in a constant challenge waiting or hoping money will arrive so I can pay my bills and then myself.

Certainly this experience has come with its ups and downs. I have been to several countries I have never been to before, I have started learning Spanish and had fun going on long hikes, white water rafting, exercising in ancient military playgrounds and scuba diving. I have eaten more variety of Mexican food then I even thought existed. I have met wonderful people from all over the world and right next door. My girlfriend, Soraya, is showing me a side of Mexico I never would have otherwise seen, I am truly grateful for her.

I have also been to the point of eating just rice and beans for weeks while working 10+ hour days. I have been cast back into the role I tried so hard to get away from. Routine is the order of the day and there often feels like no escape. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel, as there always has been, but for now it feels like my hard work, sweat and tears are going to be required to get me out of my shackles back home. I just want something, anything, that would help me build residual income. I suppose many people are looking for that, and few people actually find it. In the meantime I owe, I owe, so its off to work I go.