Today we woke up early and enjoyed our last breakfast at the Puente Viejo Hotel in Jalapa. After breakfast it was off for about a three and a half hour bus ride to Antigua. Antigua is a beautiful historical city of Guatemala near the capital that’s nestled in a beautiful valley surrounded by mountains that are around 4000 feet above sea level.
Antigua has an old world feel to it, with cobblestone streets and buildings painted with bright colors that contrast with the rain forest feel of the mountains that surround it on all sides. We arrived at almost noon and had about four hours to take in the culture, the shops, and the food. Most of our group ended up eating at McDonald’s ironically enough… It was our first taste of home in quite some time and a welcome one as we begin to turn our thoughts to traveling…
Everyone had a blast bartering for some neat Guatemalan handi-crafts. Doug Boodt wins the prize for best bartering technique. If you wanted a deal you were best off to let Doug do the heavy lifting for you and then come in at then end once he’d pulled out all the stops. We found out later in the afternoon that McDonald’s didn’t agree with a few of our team members… Funny what a little grease will do to shock the system after a week of eating pretty healthy.
As we were winding down our time in Antigua it began to monsoon rain. Almost everyone god completely soaked as we made a run for it through the flooded streets back to our buses, where we shared in the stories of the victory of our bargain hunting and bartering.
What was supposed to be a short ride back to the hotel (30 minutes) turned into about an hour and a half because of a mudslide and a couple of broken down cars along the mountain road out of Antigua. We arrived at the Conquistador Hotel and after getting checked in had a great last dinner in Guatemala City. We also shared in an evening time of worship and communion together. It was neat to share together as an entire team representing dozens of churches from five different states and prayerfully thank God for all He has done and will continue to do through His people here in Guatemala.
Tomorrow (Monday) we have an early breakfast at 6:15 AM and then we’re off to the airport. Please pray for safe travel. We look forward to seeing everyone when we arrive home in the evening.
There will be lots more stories, video, and pictures to come as we continue to unpack all of the memories and lessons that God’s been teaching our team through this experience. Thanks for journeying with us and for your thoughts, prayers and encouragement along the way.