Search This Blog

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Trip to Guatemala

A few months back I decided to surprise my best friend Tiana by showing up in Guatemala a few days before her 30th birthday. She has been living there since last October and she was a little sad that she wouldn't be able to spend her 30th with her close friends or family. For my 30th birthday, she made me the most unbelievable YouTube video and I decided immediately after watching it that I needed to go to Guatemala and surprise her.

Tiana had some slight suspicions but I called her the day before my arrival and threw her off my scent. She was totally surprised when I showed was perfect! We spent the next few days hanging out in Quetzaltenango (Xela), walking through the town, picking up food for dinner in the markets, drinking "atol" (hot, sweet, corn drink), going on hikes, and just catching up. 

At 6:00 am, on the day of her birthday, we hiked up a mountain with Don Carlos, a Mayan spiritual guide. We discovered that morning that based on the day I was born, my Mayan spirit (nahaul) is "Aj" and it was actually that day, Tiana's birthday! A coincidence? I think not! The ceremony was awesome and I could write pages and pages on it. I actually journaled almost every detail of my trip and I'm going to create a book with photos. We ate cheese and crackers and wine, then went to a spa for 3 hours, got ready and went to her friend Willy's opening night of his new restaurant. It was a perfect day and night and I was so happy to be able to celebrate with her. 

We spent a few days at Lago Atitlan, which took 3 "chicken buses" and 3.5 hours to get to. The buses are so named because there are often animals accompanying the passengers. We stayed in a really nice hotel the first night and spent the next day taking a boat ride around the lake and visiting 3 different villages. It was awesome! The night before I left we decided to stay in a cheaper hotel...not the best decision! We discovered a huge spider problem and at 2:30-6:00 in the morning, about every 30 minutes, we were abruptly woken up to cackling roosters. If I didn't physically see them in the courtyard, I would have bet my life they were actually in our room! Hahah! It was a great trip and I had sooo much fun...even the roosters just add to the story!

Take a look at a few of may favorite photos from the trip and Tiana's birthday video:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Surprise Trip to Ocracoke Island, Outer Banks, NC

A few weeks back Teddy surprised me with a trip to Ocracoke Island. I had no clue where we were going so I packed a little bit of everything. Even when I pulled out the map and saw which direction we were going, it still didn't help.

Once we got to Ocracoke, I was really excited. We were going to spend the next few days doing nothing! We both brought our laptops because realistically, there was no way we could not do any work. We stayed at a really nice bed and breakfast and after the first night, we moved upstairs into a really nice room.

Each day we had breakfast, did a hour or two of work, grabbed lunch, and then headed to the beach once the sun started to go down. The great thing about the Outer Banks and Ocracoke in particular is the unbelievably beautiful beaches. We would drive miles down the road until we couldn't see any cars and then park, climb over a sand dune, and basically have a private beach to ourselves. We saw tons of dolphins and took full advantage of relaxing. Here are a few of my favorite images from the trip.