It was some journey getting here but so worth it.
Flew from Cork to Amsterdam at 6am Sunday morning (after no sleep the night before -everyone all excited and hoping we all packed the necessities in as little space as possible) then onto Panama (which I must try find some fotos from some of our teenagers). The views as we approached the city were just incredible-soo much greenery and fields and surrounded by seemingly endless mountains and then sooo many skyscrapers on the waters edge! Then onto Guatemala with a brief stop-off in Nicaragua-only two luggage bags didnt make it (while one extra one did!..long story but we miss you Theresa!)
Finally we are here in the wonderful La Cambalacha up in the hills overlooking the volcanic mountains that surround Lake Atitlan. It feels like paradise in the jungle here. It is a very different world! But the teenagers are embracing it and laughing all the way-what a great bunch to be sharing this experience with!
There have been so many games that they/we play in our free time and co-ordinated as part of workshops-their energy is contagious-I havent played Donkey, Stop the Bus (which we used to call scategories in primary school) and Ludo for yonkers years-what a laugh!
We all have our chores which help us learn about the running of such an important place that LA CAmbalacha is -recycling is used first hand again almost immediately for example; plastic bottles are stuffed to make the insides of walls! There is also an organic toilet that I wont go into too much detail....
The people here are ridiculously friendly-everytime you pass someone they greet and smile. The pace of life is much slower here-another brief example-we planned lunch in a beautiful restaurant overlooking The Lake days in advance and still waited a good while before it came out-(someone ordered food before the group of 16 of us sat down we all ate and were leaving when his meal was being served!) But soo worth it-possible the tastiest burrito I've ever had.
We have an amazing cook here in La Cambalacha -Anjela (An-kh-ala) who has been spoiling us, my Christmas gluttony has been replaced with fresh fruit!!!!! homemade bread, huevos, frijoles, tortillas, lots of different types of chilies! jams, coffeee!!!
Ok soooo much has happened that this feels like just a brief lowdown so far I will be posting again soon as long as we don't have internet problems etc!