Fun, Food and Friends

The patchwork bridge we crossed over the river.
Saturday morning greeted me with a whopping headache - probably a mixture of insufficient sleep and days of stress and work. The first thing I did was take migraine medicine to try and stave off the full brutality of a migraine, which worked. Around 9:30am I started back at the work of unpacking and cleaning up, and then Leiane told me that someone in town that was moving had a pedestal fan for sale for Q150 (about $20 USD). (She found it in a facebook group for residents of Lake Atitlán for buying, selling and trading.) You may not need air conditioning here, but on warm days, it is nice to have some moving air if there is no breeze.

Evie and I set out to find the seller's home, which meant trekking paths in town neither of us had been before. The first picture above shows the bridge we had to cross, and the two pictures below show the view upriver and then downriver to the lake. We're currently in the rainy/wet season, so the river is flowing a bit heavier than it was 3-4 weeks ago. 

The view of Rio Panajachel upriver. You can see Friendship Bridge (yellow) in the distance. It is the main bridge into town.
The view of Rio Panajachel downriver as it flows into Lake Atitlán. The volcanos are cloud-masked today.
 After acquiring the fan, I took Evie into town to get her some art supplies, as I had promised. We walked through town and talked as we explored, probably looking a little crazy as I carried around our newly purchased pedestal fan. When passing by a hardware store, I was ecstatic to see that they had the exact same model fan and were selling it for twice what I just paid!

We made our way down Calle Principal and in one of the shops Evie picked out some paintbrushes, a paint set and some paper. She was beamingly happy. After that, we quickly made our way through the mercado and picked out a few fresh mangos and avocados.

For the trip back to the house I asked Evie if she wanted to go the scenic route (down the back of Panajachel and across the metal bridge, which was longer), or the shorter route. We opted to go down Calle Navidad so she could see where the Kingdom Hall is, and then, if the river wasn't too high, perhaps the walkboard would still be down and we could cross it to get home. Well, the river was much higher than I anticipated, and though I was ready to turn and walk down to the bridge to cross, Evie was up for the challenge, so we rolled up our pants and meandered back and forth trying to find the easiest way to cross. We can only imagine what the locals were thinking as they watched us from above, me carrying a pedestal fan as I tried not to fall into the water.

We safely made it across the river and back home; as we walked, Evie told me how much fun she was having. The whole trip gave us a good opportunity to talk, and it was great to see how she opened up and seemed to be adjusting well – better than I had expected.

As soon as we got back to the house, Leiane told me that we were meeting the Eisenhauer family for lunch in town at La Palapa (a restaurant we had yet to try). Evie and I cleaned up as fast as we could and the family was quickly in a couple tuks on our way to the restaurant. I knew this would be particularly exciting for the girls, as this was the first time they would meet Loren (14) and Attie (11).

On Saturdays at La Palapa, from 12:00pm to 4:00pm, an American cooks barbecue pork and chicken, so we got to enjoy a nice taste of home. Then, we shared a couple brownies ala mode to finish up.

Brownie ala mode at La Palapa restaurant.
Julene, Loren and Attie's mom, had a Bible study scheduled right afterward, so the kids were coming home with us, and we enjoyed a leisurely walk back across the bridge and up Calle Los Manos to our house.

Madi and Attie were fast friends (as we predicted).
Attie, Madi, Evie, Izabel and Loren (L to R) as we walk up Calle Los Manos to our house.

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