Books Worth a Look

  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave - This book is a must read. Better than anything else I've read, it takes you vividly into the life of a person in the 3rd world who has no choice but to escape. It is brilliantly written & works well as an audio book. Often I've sent info about the wonderful refugees I've met in Europe. We know only so much of their plight as it is painful for them to recall much less live through again by recounting it. But over time it is clear what they've lived through. This book is excellent as you discover the horrors of their world. Somewhat how to me, it is like being in Europe near a Concentration Camp. One has an obligation to visit it. 'Never to Forget.' In this case, to have our eyes opened.
  • Garbage King by Eliz Laird - The book is set on the streets on Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia and here lives Mamo and his sister Tiggist. When Mamo's "uncle" offers a job, he soon sets out on a bus to work. Little does he know that he is actually being sold into slavery...

Monday, August 16, 2010

Hola de Antigua, Guatemala

What a wonderful first 24 hours!

Upon arriving in Guatemala City, I rode to Antigua with a family from Connecticut. It's a blended family: mom with two sons, 16 & 14 and dad with a daughter 17 and son 16. Dad's a patent attorney & mom is an anesthesiologist. They are very inclusive & I spent a delightful evening out to dinner with them. The teens are delightful, at least I think so - so far! We are at the same homestay so it's company & insight into what to see & do.

The family brings used soccer balls - about 150- each summer & goes out to poor villages to donate them. I'm going with them one afternoon this week.

I had my first morning of classes. Taking the advice of a former student, I was able to request a specific teacher. Based on the first day, I'd say he may be one of the best I've had in Latin America & at 1/2 the cost of Mexico! He's been at the school for 21 years, married with two children, a girl 13 & a boy 4.

The school building is relatively small but fine. The city of Antigua is the smallest Latin American city I've been in - the size makes for lovely panoramic views in all directions, including 3 volcanoes - two of which are still active.

The homestay is pleasant & has a lovely inner garden. My room overlooks the veranda. After amuerzo (lunch - main meal) I'm taking the school sponsored walking tour.

And gratefully as I see it's about 90 at home, it's in the mid 70's here & cooler at night! Mercifully low humidity.

Off to Lake Atitlan Saturday. Monday, the young man & his parents I sponsor through CFCA come for a visit.

1 comment:

Jim and Nancy Forest said...

Your pilgrim life never ceases to amaze me, Phil!


Thoughts on the amazing people I get to meet.

Rich, my 19 year old friend, soon to be Franciscan and recent community member at Haley House in Boston. An article he wrote.