Saturday, January 12, 2013

Live, from Guatemala, it's Michelle Brahen and Carrie Hall!! (Ayy bayy bay)

Hola, buenas noches everyone ;)
       Michelle and Carrie will be your bloggers for this fine evening. After a week full of strenuous work, our time of relaxation consisted of waking up for a 9 AM hike further up the volcano to pick more coffee beans. This hike was a vast improvement over the last one as Carrie did not taste her breakfast coming back up. We hiked this volcano like champs and still beat the farmer even though he rode a poor, old, hard working horse. Once we arrived to our destination, we again got our baskets and began to pick beans for a few hours. Last time we picked beans, we collected 62Ibs (which Michelle guessed correctly before being weighed) and this time we collected 93Ibs! During this time, we got to try all kinds of fruits from the trees such as Loquats which were DELICIOUS! 
      After descending down the scenic volcano, we went back to the farmer’s house for a fine lunch consisting of beets, rice, stuffed peppers, and of course, more tortillas. The real treat was a bottle of Coca-Cola and Pepsi, made with real sugar ;). After lunch, we stayed at the farmer’s house to start the processing of the coffee beans. One group gathered all the beans and picked out all of the red and yellow ones, the other group pitted with the work-out bicycle, and the last group took the batch of dried, fermented beans and separated good from bad ones. Once we finished up this task, it was time for some of us to head home to relax for a little, while others continued their adventure on the chicken bus to Antigua to exchange some moolah. Carrie's trip on the chicken bus was much better than our previous ride as there was an opportunity to actually sit. If you have never rode a chicken bus, just think of an elementary school bus painted in mad crazy colors flying down the road at high speeds, racing other buses, passing other vehicles in dangerous zones, with doors open and citizens packed inside with our lives at risk. Luckily we have survived and actually got our money. Anyways, as they made their journey to Antigua, the other part of the group just hung out in the living room singing some lovely tunes and enjoying everyone's company. 
      Around 6:30 PM, we heading towards the farmers house again and on our way, we ran into a precession. Devon, our guide, was not sure if it was for a holiday or funeral. It turns out they were celebrating the 15th of January? lol. Anyways, we also ran into many homes with bumpin music, fireworks, and people all over the streets. At the farmer’s house, we had some chicken, rice, and of course, everyone's favorite, especially Lisa and Kya's, TORTILLAS! 
      After one of our last farmer's meal with everyone, we all packed into small taxi cabs and made our way to Antigua for an adventurous night. Our first stop was the Whiskey Den, which Franklin, our new friend owns. We were given a complementary coffee of our choice...yumm ;). This is where we ran into familiar faces who have joined our previous adventures this past week, Geairmo and Jaunmaun (spelling?)  We all sat together and had a great time and got to hang out with our friend Jaunmaun! After our delicious, warm, scrumptious cups of nutella latte's, we walked around Antigua's town square and enjoyed the scenery and music playing from all around. 
      Wow, it's been a wild and crazy time this past week and it seems like just yesterday we were getting off the plane. Even though there is only 2 full days left here in this bonito (beautiful) country, we still do have 2 fantastic, adventurous days ahead of us that we are looking forward to. Words cannot describe all that we have learned and experienced this past week and the friendships we have made and will always cherish. (A special thank you to our leaders Jess, Alyssa, and Hannah) As much as we love it here and want to continue helping this country and its people, we cannot wait to come home and share all that we have observed and learned with everyone. This has really been a life changing experience one we wish to continue as we go on with our lives.

Carrie Hall and Michelle Brahen


  1. You guys are awesome - I'm so proud of the contributions you have made and envious of your once in a life time experience! Enjoy every moment!!
    Darla (aka Hannah's Mom)

  2. It's good to know Carrie is having a good time. We were wondering if she ever got past Miami.
    Hope you had packed your Pepto!
    Love Mom and Dad