Friday, April 2, 2010


So for those of you have keep up with my random blog posts know that they are just that: random.  Partly because I like to share a bit of everything that's going on in my life here, from work projects to family, adventures to daily life stuff.  And partly because I feel like that makes this mode of communication more never know if you're going to get a brief on work in the park, photos from a trip to who knows where, stories from rural Guatemala or thoughts on life.  To not disappoint now, I thought I'd share a sad (but in a funny way) story from last week.

So I was at the park in the morning when I got a text message from Tigo (the main cellphone company here) saying it was triple day (this means that when you buy x number of credit for calls/msgs, they give you triple the amount you actually gets a bit complicated when you factor in how much that credit is worth on certain days, experation, etc, but I do my best to work the system).  Anyways, so I decide to head in to El Novillero to get some credit when I run in to the little old chicken lady as I'm exiting the corn fields.  As usual she's barefoot, her smiling face overflowing with wrinkles and carrying a basket with 3 creole (cage-free?) chickens inside.  She asks me as usual in a mix of K'iche' and Spanish if I want to take one home.  Now I always say no, that's there's no money but that day I had some extra besides paying Tigo and thought it would be a great thing to have in time for Semana Santa (holy week).  So we do some bartering and I end up with this nice black chicken for Q50 ($6).  He had a good weight, and I just love pollo criollo (it may not be as juicy or tender as normal chicken but that's because normal chicken isn't really many hormones!) so I walked home with my chicken pretty content.  Oh and I should mention that although I've witnessed many chicken purchases, this was the first one I had done all by myself and half in K'iche' :)  I untied my chicken, put it in the pen out back and headed to work.  Imagine my distress when the next day Doña Oralia informs me that my chicken has a cough and she had to quarantine it!  When I went to go see, sure enough he was coughing just like heavy smoker.  We fed it tomato, hoping this old remedy would help....but alas my chicken did not make it.  I'm sure most of you know you can't eat chickens that die from sickness so my excitement and money were all for not.  To make matters worse, he had infected another chicken in the pen and she died too!  Sigh.  Such is life.  To end on a happier note, we got a hold of some more chickens and ate them at lunch yesterday to celebrate holy thursday (delicious!)

There's a lot to mention regarding holy week, but I'll have to wait to post on that (along with updates from the past few weeks).  Had a fun mass last night, after lunch today we have a procession and mass, tomorrow there's another mass in the afternoon and Sunday too.  Inbetween all that time at church we eat lots of good food, watch reenactments, visit people, make arches out of fruits and plants, create amazing "rugs" from colored sawdust and flowers and watch old movies like The 10 Commandments and Quo Vadis.  Fun times!

Hope everyone's having a good Easter!


  1. Alas!
    Pobre pollo...
    Fun activities.
    Gracias por compartir tus aventuras!
    (to be read switching languages every other line)

  2. I love to buy local chickens too, although mine come already butchered. We have been thinking about getting some chickens of our own to raise and eat but haven't done it yet. I agree, so much better than the store-bought but the chicken cough thing doesn't sound very fun.

    Enjoy your busy weekend!