Yesterday we spent a long day on the infamous “chicken busses” of Guatemala, known locally as a camioneta. While their first experience on the camionetas was a quick hop from San Lucas to Santiago de Atitlan, but yesterday was a whole different beast. We spent 8 hours on three different busses, three people to a seat with Guatemalans who travel this way on a daily basis. We ate lunch at the comedores that feed hungry Guatemalan travelers. At the bus station in Quiché we witnessed traveling sales men trying to sell their medicines that claim to cure nearly everything. On our final bus we were overrun with vendors selling snacks of popcorn balls and cut fruit. This loud commercial invasion ended abruptly ten minutes down the road when they disembarked to wait for the next bus heading in the opposite direction.
For some of the students this trip was a first look at another side of normal Guatemalan life. It was a successful trip aside from a few bouts of motion sickness on the windy roads of the Guatemalan highlands, and it has brought us to our final homestays in San Juan Cotzal.