Saturday, June 26, 2010

Monterrico, Guatemala

The trip was short. Inferno heat. Dripping sweat. Dangerous waves. Hungry mosquitoes. Expensive drinks. And, it was the ocean. There's something special about the ocean, no matter where you go. The strength, the power, the calm. It produces a breed of people that have a different attitude on life. More laid if the the belief in the ocean allows a deep knowing that everything will work out - it always does. Perhaps that's just how it makes me feel. Monterrico, Guatemala:
There is one main road in Monterrico. This photos is not it. The Calle Principal is paved and has little tiendas, hotels and restaurants lining it. Curving to the right, passing a gym full of weights and sweaty men, the road ends at the boat docks on the river/mangroves. It is a ghost town this time of year. Generally, the place fills up on the weekend, as locals and tourists alike come to take a break from Antigua or the Capital.
We stayed at Johnny's Place, a Canadian owned, but locally run hostel right on the beach. The location on the beach was the saving grace, cause it is HOT. Usually, it pours every night and cools things off, but while we were there, it hadn't rained for two days and the humidity was as high as it could go. The wind picks up around 9am or so, which is the only way to tolerate the daytime heat.
Johnny's Place has a number of other fabulous attributes too: lots of lounging areas, little pools outside each bungalow, hammocks, music, friendly staff, and enough areas for passing time that you could move every hour of the day and find somewhere new. Oh, they also have Saturday night parties. I can't imagine the sweat while dancing. Dance, jump in the ocean. Dance, jump in the ocean. That's how I would deal.
The bar/restaurant. Everyone is watching the World Cup.
Lounge area across from the restaurant. Further down is a bar and stool area and a dance floor that runs into another bar that serves only on Saturday during the fiesta.
Another lounge area right on the sand. I actually preferred this area. Any time you have a lounge area with cloth and pillows in a humid climate (like the one above), you inevitably get mold and bugs. Note the hammocks to the left. This is where Sarah and I spent a lot of time. A LOT!
Every night the wind died down, the mozzies came to feast, and cause it was too hot to do anything else, we drank and safely frolicked in the ocean.
H-O-Double T!
Everyone flocks to the beach for sunset.
Including these dogs, one of which wanted to play with us and kept biting our skirts and holding on...then biting Sarah's arm...all playfully, but she (the dog, not Sarah) took it too far and it became a little alarming.
Sunset, Monterrico.
Sunrise, Monterrico.

There weren't many people on the beach at 5:30am, which I suppose makes it something special. Ultimately though, we both had sleepless nights of stagnant air, mosquitoes giving us too much lovin', sweat drenched bed sheets, and 4:45am beach time. We couldn't handle it another we headed back north to Antigua.

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