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The Sounds and Sights of Guatemala

A rooster rises at 4 in the morning making the painfully loud sound of cock-a-doodle-doo, and waking up the whole entire block. This sound then causes barking from multiple dogs. This cycle of noises repeats every hour until finally it is time to get up.

Waking up to these sounds and not being annoyed is something that takes time. Although these sounds are quite annoying when you are trying to sleep (especially after a 8 hour hike), they are much better than the harsh sound of my alarm clock. Being without the constant beeping of my phone and technology has made me more aware of the sights and sounds around me.

At the beginning of this trip in Antigua I had woken up to the sound of laughter. Personally I am not a morning person, so laughing at 6 in the morning does not happen very much or at all. This sound was a pleasant way to wake up, and as I woke up it showed me there is no bad time to laugh.

Additionally, while trekking I was able to hear the cows welcoming us in with their beautiful moos, and smell the piles of poop on the ground. If I had my phone during this situation I probably would have walked right into the poop or not realized just how loud cows can be. Additionally, we had the opportunity to take a solo hike, and doing so allowed me to take in the breathtaking views and appreciate the beauty of nature. At home if I had taken a walk alone I probably would have had my headphones in with music playing at full blast to distract from how long the hike was. Not having music to listen to forced me to slow down and pay attention to the little things like my breath. Also, I am now able to remember the different feelings I had as I walked. Additionally, if I were to have a camera with me I would have been trying to capture all of nature´s beauty, and I would have not remembered much. Without a camera I was able to see everything for myself, and am now able to remember the sights more clearly.

My senses have heightened from being away from technology and it has taught me that travelling somewhere is not always about getting there, but about what one sees along the way. I am so excited to share what I have learned with my familly, and take everything a little bit slower at home.

-Rachael