The Chicken Bus

Our Guatemala trip started with quite an adventure, to say the least!

We arrived here pretty late at night and stayed in a hotel close to the airport. Our trip started off pretty good with a good night’s sleep and a great breakfast at the hotel to start off the day. We needed to catch a bus to the town Stan used to live in to meet up with Rocsana and Paola and to pick up the car we were using for our trip. That is when the adventure really took off! We quickly hopped on a “chicken bus” (pictured here) because they were leaving as we got there and as soon as we stepped in the doorway the driver took off. The bus was crammed with three people per seat that was made to fit two people. Pretty tight quarters to say the least. On the way we ran into a traffic jam that turned out to be a demonstration against the government that blocked the whole national highway, no one was going anywhere. Our bus driver decided that he wasn’t going to wait around so he took the back roads up and down the mountain that was so narrow, it should have been made only for cars going one way. But no, it was two way, with every kind of vehicle traveling on it and with cars parked on the side of the road to boot, quite an obstacle course. To top it off, he was going so fast around the curves that it took all of our strength to hang on so we didn’t end up piling up on the floor. He was going so fast that it felt like we were only on two wheels going around some of them and there was a constant smell of burnt rubber from the tires squealing around the curves. It was the first time I ever felt like I had put my life in the hands of someone that felt like today was a good day to die!!!

Because of the detour, our 3 hour bus ride turned into a 5 1/2 hour thrill ride that left us absolutely exhausted. I almost knelt down and kissed the ground once I got off the bus! We went straight to the hotel to check in. Once the hotel manager saw us, she said she was dealing with a big problem and will be right with us. I felt something was up… About 10 minutes later she came over to us and told us that a mistake was made and that they had our reservation on the wrong day and that they were completely full. After going back and forth between a couple hotels and an hour or so later, we finally got a room for the night and crashed.

We praised the Lord that we got to Quiché safely and that we didn’t have to sleep in the hotel lobby that night! We could have let these issues bother us but spirits stayed high because we reasoned that every trip has hiccups and we were just getting ours out of the way in the beginning!

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