Sep 26

Day One in Guatemala

Celebrating crossing the Guatemalan border with none other that Gallo beer.

It felt good to be crossing the border into Guatemala after my short stint in Belize.  I was back in Latin America as I knew it, back into speaking Spanish, and back into eating cheap delicious food.  I had been looking forward to returning to Guatemala ever since my cheeky weekend trip there 3 months earlier.  That trip had been a nice surprise: driving to Flores with a buddy of mine from D.F. , exploring the pyramids in Tikal slightly stoned with a bunch of Mexican hippies, and enjoying a brief moment of passion with a gorgeous and charming English girl.  So suffice to say that Guatemala was already in my good books when my passport got stamped and Tony and I rolled through.

Sometimes people are too friendly.

Is it rainy season yet?

Once in Guatemala, I soon found myself riding on a hilly dirt track heading through the middle of ranch country.  It would be dirt, rain, and mud for the next 70 km.  I met and chatted with a lot of friendly people that day, but in the afternoon I met one young man on a scooter who was a little too friendly for my liking.

He had stopped his scooter half way down a hill so that he could have a chat with me.  I never stop halfway down a hill though, so all we could exchange were a couple of quick holas before I whizzed by.  He was not deterred and soon he drove by again and stopped at the top of the next hill at a bend in the road.  This time I too stopped to chat.

The conversation started normal enough.  Where are you from?  Where are you going?  It’s raining a lot.  Then, without any preamble the boy reached over, grabbed my crotch and gave the goods a soft squeeze.  I was slow to react.  I looked down at his hand and gently grabbed his wrist and removed his arm from my private parts.

Road turns into river. Is it rainy season yet?

“Que estas haciendo?!” What are you doing?! , I asked him.  More confused than alarmed.  He was being very forward.

“Me gusta esto.  Me gusta mamada” I like this.  I like to suck cock.  He said, in a decidedly saucy tone.  He then tried to move his hand back in the direction of my genitalia.  I was not having that, and I pushed his hand away.

“A mi, no me gusta” I don’t like that, I told him firmly, but politely.  “Que tengas buen dia” Have a nice day.  And with that I rode off.

Moments later the boy drove by me again and kept going, I gave him my best blank expression as he looked back and winked at me.  I figured that was the end of that.  It wasn’t.

The kid gets top marks for persistence, because maybe 30 minutes later down the road, there he was again, waiting for me.  I ignored him as I rode past him, but he started up his scooter again and soon caught up with me.  I could only hear half of what he was saying to me over the sound of the wind and his engine, but it was clear that he was having another go.  “I like girls”, I told him, and then because I feared chicas might sound too similar to chicos, I clarified by saying, “I like women, I have a girlfriend.”  He didn’t seem to think this explained my lack of interest, and so he started asking questions like “No tienes berga?” Don’t you have a dick?.  


I was losing my patience with this kid, I’d been nice, I’d been clear, and still his scooter was buzzing around me like a big annoying wasp that wouldn’t go away.

“Dejeme in paz! Vete!” Leave me alone, go away! I finally yelled at him.

The boy gave me a hurt expression and explained that he only liked me and wanted to give me pleasure.  I ignored him.  He kept talking, but I kept ignoring him.  Eventually he drove off and shouted something back about how I was being unreasonable and rude, and that fortunately was the end of it.

As I rode down the rode – after preparing a few choice Spanish explicatives in my mind in case the boy came back yet again – I couldn’t help but wonder how often women have to put up with that kind of behaviour…

Biro’s House

A good first night.

The rest of the day was relatively uneventful, and soon it was 4:30 in the afternoon, and time to starting thinking about finding a place to stay the night.  There were no towns on the road, just the occasional schoolhouse and mom and pop shop, the rest of it was barbed wire and fields and the houses of the ranchers and people who worked said fields.  Camping on the sly didn’t seem a very appealing option.  It had been rainy all day so the ground everywhere would be soggy, and I would likely have to climb over some barbed wire to find a reasonably hidden spot.  Plus, I had been warned several times already that I should get off the road before dark for my own safety.

So I pulled over at random house to strike up a conversation about the road ahead, and very quickly I was invited to camp out on their front porch.  I just as quickly accepted.

Biro’s House

Biro’s family was a nice family with 5 kids.  The were one of those “upper-lower class” Guatemalan families, meaning that they weren’t impoverished, but they also didn’t have much more than the essentials.  Their house was a concrete box with a tin-roof.  They had electricity and a tap with running water that came from a nearby river.  The kitchen was a typical outdoor kitchen where Biro’s wife and daughter cooked up corn tortilla and beans over a wood fire.  There was one bed for biro and his wife, whilst the kids slept in some old hammocks slung up around the house.  Biro and his two oldest sons worked clearing the fields, which they got to by piling onto the family motorcycle and driving to wherever the work was.

Though I was happy enough just sleeping on the porch, they of course insisted on feeding my dinner and breakfast which consisted of fresh warm corn tortillas, beans, and some fresh cow’s cheese.  We chatted well into the night about a wide variety of subjects, ranging from Christianity, to Biro’s kids, to US politics.

When I went to bed that night, I lay there marveling once again over the generosity of the people I had met along the road on this trip.  Guatemala, I decided, was going to be OK.


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  1. Kanoe

    Zack, your blog is awesome. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Kili

    Just read this entry and had a good laugh! Love your blog.

  3. JC

    This is to funny… I loved the beginning of the post by the way.

  4. william

    hey man william from guatemala city here sorry about how was you start in guatemala hahahahaha so funny story i know in the moment dont was funny but now im sure, i leave you a meessage in couch surfing
    if you come to visit or just pass trought guatemala city letme know and lets go for a couple beers in a cool places i know here, i hope you are well and if you need someting just letme know in couch surfing, have fun and have safe travels.

    facebook: cardoza05@yahoo.com

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