So I realize it's been almost 2 months since we got back from Guatemala. I have a really good reason for being so delayed... I promise... Anyway I've forgotten a lot, so this will be pretty short.
We drove down the very windy road all the way from Xela to Malacatan. Driving in Guatemala is a different experience. It is one of the most mentally draining things I've ever done. You will be driving down a 2 lane highway, through the mountains, dodging buses and trucks that are trying to pass someone in your lane, also dodging the people on the side of the road and sometimes walking or standing in the middle of the road selling goods, dodging potholes and speed bumps that are BLACK and of varying sizes that you can't see until you are right about to go over them ( A slight miracle our rental car came back in one piece, no?) and then you throw in rain like this:
We arrived though and stayed in a decent little hotel. It was honestly the nicest one around. What would be considered a dive in the States was our nicest hotel in the area. The real kicker for the hotel was that it had air conditioning. A huge plus when you are in a place that is near a 100 degrees and 100% humidity. We had a good time. Visited some of the families that Jon knew on his mission. The other nice thing about our hotel was that it had a little restaurant on site. It was one of the few places that Jon and I ate where we didn't end up with a serious case of what the missionaries down there refer to as boo. So we stayed there both nights because of the air conditioning and the great, sanitary cook. (TMI?)
We arrived in the evening that first day and ate dinner, found a little store where we bought a whole bunch of candy (Most of which is sitting in my cupboard as we speak) and laid low for the night. We had just come from the temple that morning. Jon gave me a car tour of Malacatan and we found the LDS chapel. It was one of the largest buildings in the city, so pretty hard to miss!
The next day we drove down to the beach, it was about a 45 minute drive. It was HOT, HOT, HOT, I have never been somewhere so hot in my life. It was a black sand beach so the water looked grey but when you got in the water it was so warm.
Look at us, aren't we hot:
Here are some pictures of the beach. It was kind of dumpy, very third world, but beautiful in it's own way.
We headed to Coatepeque after the beach and visited some of Jon's favorite people he taught there. We were glad we did, because their family is facing some serious trials right now and I think it meant a lot to them to see Elder Laudie and have someone care about what they were going through.
This is Lucy and her Dog. She sat on my foot and wouldn't let me leave when we tried to go. She also would switch between Jon and I having us scratch her ears. She loved to be loved! She was a great guard dog too. Every time someone came by the place she was on full alert until they were safely past and she knew her home was safe.
This was our only ride in a tuk-tuk during our trip. a little cab that is attached to a motorcycle looking thing. It was an experience!