Back to cold weather
Trip Start Mar 14, 2004
285Trip End Ongoing
Xela is the second largest city in Guatemala and is relatively clean, surprisingly safe, and has all the modern conveniences of any large city including crowing roosters that compete with howling stray dogs at all hours of the night.
OK, that's not a convenience, it's a complaint, but otherwise it's a nice place. And like anywhere else, it isn't perfectly clean either. I took these directions to a restaurant word for word out of an english newspaper... turn right at the garbage pile by the no dumping sign on 16th street and head east for two blocks... you get the idea. Xela is located in the mountains of the western highlands and sits at an elevation of about 8000 feet which I think is equivalent to Aspen, Colorado
Xela rivals Antigua for spanish language schools and that's why I'm here. To go back to school and advance my spanish skills from that of a 2 year old to hopefully a four year old level. The learning system here is an immersion process where you are thrown into the culture head on. A few hours ago, I moved in with a middle class Guatemalan family that speaks almost no english where I will stay while I attend school. I get my own room about half the size of your walk-in closet and they cook 3 meals a day for me.
Spanish lessons are one on one instruction, Mon-Fri for 5 hours a day. Excursions to volcanoes and the beach and some other things I don't even know about yet are included in the price, which is $140 US per week (that's $20 per day for you non-math majors). Tonight's activity is at the school ... some kind of international food and beer thing ... I wonder if they will have Genny Cream Ale to proudly represent the USA?
Ñ ñ ... I get these letters on the spanish keyboard but I haven't found any use for them except to show you they exist.