Thursday, September 27, 2007

I Can See Clearly Now

In Mexico City, we are surrounded by mountains that we can never see because, sadly, the smog is just so thick. So we never get tired of incredible views, like of this volcano, in Antigua, Guatemala.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Who needs clocks?

This sundial near downtown Antigua, Guatemala, gave us the exact time.

Monday, September 24, 2007

On the Job

Jeremy cruises through the milpa crops in the Guatemalan Highlands, near Panajachel.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Feliz 16 de Septiembre

We got back to Mexico City just in time to celebrate Mexican Independence Day. And, what a party it was. It is a great weekend to be in the megalopolis. We started the night by heading to downtown Coyoacan for the famous Grito de Independencia with our friend Sarah from Guatemala. Then, we ended the night at a goodbye party for another friend who will leave Mexico soon. Of course, Jeremy and I were sporting our outrageous Viva Mexico hats. I wish I had a picture of that.

p.s. there is still more to blog about Guatemala, so stay tuned.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Mothers en la Lucha

LAGO DE ATITLAN, Guatemala-- Strong, warrior women surrounded the Highlands of Guatemala. We were fortunate enough to visit these indigenous communities along the Lake of Atitlan, with its breathtaking volcanoes perfectly visible from almost all points of the villages. In our visit there, I couldn't help but notice that these fierce women, struggling every day to survive, were also soft and tender-- they way only a mother could be.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Beep, Beep!

ANTIGUA, Guatemala--I remember hopping into a taxi in San Jose, California, this past June and thinking, "Oh my God, this feels like I'm in a big ol' boat."

When it comes to taxis in Mexico and Guatemala, bigger is not always better.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Getting Hooked Up

ANTIGUA, Guatemala-- It seems like the World Wide Web sneaks in almost every crazy nook throughout Latin America. As reporters on assignment, we are always looking for places where we can hook up to the Internet during our travels. We've seen some interesting set ups along the way.

Here's one place where you can get a haircut, and then check your e-mail.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Baby Fever in Guatemala

GUATEMALA CITY-- As we are jumping from hotel to hotel within Guatemala, one thing has really stood out for me-- A LOT of couples staying at these hotels have come to adopt babies. I have read articles about foreigners coming to Central America to adopt babies, but seeing the baby frenzy first hand really blew me away.

Hotels here really cater to these couples who are going through the process of adopting. Baby business is done in the lobby of hotels, and parents-to-be can be seen giving the babies back at the end of the day after their visitation hours are up. It is sort of a surreal scene.

While having breakfast one morning in the hotel restaurant, I noticed one British adoptive mom carry her little Guatemalan baby over her shoulders. My mind just started racing. My husband and I then began discussing our thoughts as outsiders looking in: Does the baby have other siblings here? Will this baby ever remember the cultural richness of their home country? Will the new parents keep their Guatemalan names? If the baby comes back as an adult, will Guatemala ever feel like home to them? Will the new parents ever bring them back to visit? Do some people view these parents as foreigners swooping in, like always, taking something for a cheaper price? Will the baby get to graduate college now because of this? Will the baby ever learn to speak Spanish or will they ever enjoy marimba music?

There are so many challenging questions and inner struggles that all these adoptive parents who I see checking in and out of these hotels must have asked themselves. And who knows if there even is a right answer for any of them. But one thing is certain, there is no doubt that the life of these babies is dramatically going to change once they leave these hotel doors.