We expected and planned to visit Antigua today, although we hadn’t figured out how to get there. Yesterday, we decided that would be a problem for this morning.
Somehow, Scott managed to convince Mark, who runs Hope Haven here in Guatemala, to bring us to Antigua early this morning. We were all roused unexpectedly and packed into Mark’s van. On our way, we stopped at a shop to see if there were any interesting cowboy boots. Emily bought a pair of handmade leather shoes, built right in the back of the shop from locally-sourced leather. We made our way into central Antigua a few minutes later, parking just outside a huge open market filled with more handmade goods. Mark brought us to his favorite local joint, Toko Baru. We ate a mixture of Indonesian, Mediterranean, and Central American dishes at a restaurant run by a Dutch man. We shared our most interesting stories with Mark, who enraptured us all with his own accounts of his youth. Our next stop was a hike above the city. Mark brought us up to an overlook of Antigua and even gave us all an in-depth history lesson about Central America and its history in Antigua.
Mark ended his morning chaperoning shift and dropped us off in central Antigua. We waited out the rain in a small restaurant. After waiting much too long, we decided to venture into the town square. Within about 15 minutes of leaving the safety of the restaurant, the downpour began. We found refuge in a nearby Wendy’s for the duration of the rain. Next, we picked up a quick dinner before catching a ride on some chicken buses, the local public transport. The buses got us near the factory quickly, but we did have to walk the last mile home. Back at the factory, we only managed to watch half of Disney’s Hercules before we absolutely had to get to bed.