In Search of America

Guatemala Dia Nueve


Benadryl is a lifesaver. I slept like a baby, and my bug bites aren’t as obnoxiously itchy. My legs are tired, but tired in a good way. I am not so sore I can’t walk, but I am thinking it will be a rest day.

Today is our last full day in San Pedro. I feel ready to move on. It is stunningly beautiful and relaxing, but I feel as though I have seen what I came to see. This morning I soaked in the sun while sitting in the hammock out front of our Airbnb. It was nice to have an easy start to the morning. 

We headed to a coffee shop on the main street for a big breakfast. My omelet had sweet plantains in it and now I am obsessed. After our breakfast, we walked down to the dock to take a ferry to San Marcos for a cacao ceremony. 

Coco has heard a lot about cacoa ceremony’s in the past few weeks and we decided to try it out. The cacao plant is native to this region and it is a ritual to drink it in a group and talk. Keith’s Cacao is a well known place all around the world. He is known as the cacao shaman. He happens to be across the river in San Marcos.

We arrived to the island an hour and a half before our ceremony; so to kill time we grabbed a snack at Circles Cafe. They had a lovely back garden where we enjoyed sharing a pastry, while reading our books. An older gentleman from Holland came and joined us for a few moments before we left to find Keith’s place. As we got up to leave, he kindly pointed us in the direction he thought it would be. 

We found Keith’s place with out too much trouble because when you walked by you are hit by the aroma of chocolate. We arrived twenty minutes early, so we sat out front chatting with a regular attendee named, Brenda. She told us a little about what to expect. She also told us she had been coming off and on for the last 8 years. We nervously asked her how much it would cost, since they hadn’t replied to our email from a few days before. She told us and we looked in our wallets only to find we only had enough for one of us to attend. Everyone had warned us to not use the ATMs. She kindly went inside to as if we could pay the returning customer rate. They laughed and agreed to let us in at the discounted rate. 

It took a while to make the cacao for everyone, but when we all had a cup Keith explained we could add sugar or chili to our cups to make it drinkable. I tasted it before adding anything and it was bitter. It reminded me of when I went on the tour of Scharffen Berger Chocolate as a kid. I added a little sugar (I should have added more I later realized) and chili. I slowly sipped away at the drink. I can’t say I loved the taste and I can’t say I hated it. 

Keith started talking about things he believes are going on in the world. I’m not sure I believe what he believes, but it is good to expand your knowledge of others believe. He asked people what they were feeling. Brenda, the lady who we had talked to out front asked him for some guidance on things she was going through. She seemed to be caring a lot of hurt. 

Some how a few minutes later, I was being put on the spot to help heal her. He told me I have healing energy. I know that we as humans can help others heal. I know that we have the ability to love on those around us. But I am not sure I believe that my hands can heal someone. Keith talked to me for twenty minutes about how powerful I was. I kind of shut down a though. I didn’t have much of an idea of what I was walking into. And I felt very uncomfortable being put on the spot. After having some time to process the whole ceremony, I can’t say I wouldn’t do one again. But I think I would prefer, to drink with people I know well. Maybe my experience would have been a little different. 

About three hours into the ceremony though, I started getting antsy. Cacao has caffeine and I had been sitting criss cross apple sauce for three hours. I looked at Coco and gave her the signal I was ready to leave. 

We quietly left Keith’s place and started our walk to the pier. During the cacao ceremony we had learned there was a gelato place in town that all the proceeds towards the owner opening up an orphanage in San Marcos. We each grabbed a scoop to support the lady’s dream. After enjoying our treat, we headed to the ferry. We sat on the boat for a while talking to Anthony, the driver. He started chatting because he was a warriors fan and had a knee brace on. We all swapped stories about our knee injuries. 

When we got back to San Pedro, both Coco and I ran straight to Fifth Dimension, for one last vegetarian meal. We got there ten minutes to close. We asked the owner if it was still ok to order food. He smiled and nodded. We both enjoyed black bean burgers and split a choco chia pudding. 

Shortly into our meal, it started to rain outside. We had yet to see a downpour in Guatemala. It is their rainy season, but it’s towards the end of it. By the time we were done with our meals, it was a downpour. We booked it and ran for our Airbnb. We laughed as we trudged through the rivers running through the streets. It was the one day both of us had taken our rain jackets out of our backpacks.

We got back to our place and quickly changed out of our wet clothes. We decide for the rest of the night, we would just relax and play cribbage at our place before our big travel day tomorrow. 

Tomorrow we head to Mexico.

Buenos Noches.

Sarah TumaComment