Welcome Chicks and Pupusas

(A pretty typical landmark in Antigua, both the tower and the Coca Cola truck…)

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My first day in Antigua is a relatively good one, marked most splendidly by the birth of these two little guys –


Remember Osso the rooster? Yeah, he’s been busy shacking up with his lady friend who lives in the apartment above him and Julio and Carolina, my host family, say it’s good luck for my trip. How can I argue with that? Also in the good to great category on my first day is breakfast – huevoes con frijoles – served at a real table with the whole host family in tow – Carolina and Julio and their sons Juan and Julio junior and junior’s girlfriend. A real family breakfast! There is also the killer house I am moving into for six days with the big windows and the basil and chamomile plants and the bunny rabbit, two dogs, and lovely little Guatemalan family to keep me company. Oh, the house comes complete with a full kitchen. Or there’s the adorable little señora who runs the home stay I am staying in when I go to school. And let’s not forget that there’s school!! Spanish school!! Spanish!!

(My friend Osso, the proud papa)

Not everything is falling in that good category, for instance I am bone tired. Keeping my head up and my eyes open has been a challenge since I arrived. I don’t know if I have ever been this tired in my life and it’s quite unexpected seeing as that I just spent the whole month of July sleeping at Cindy and Bob’s house and just spent a relatively relaxing week at the beach. It’s hard to shake and makes me just want to curl up in bed and not explore this lovely city. I am trying to overcome this.

I am also trying to overcome the fact that I am alone here. Granted, that’s kind of what I was going for with this whole pick-up-and-move-to-Guatemala thing, but still, friends would be nice. Don’t get me wrong, I am working on the friend front. Carolina has gone above and beyond the call of duty for a pesky house guest and I love speaking with her – she speaks damn fine English and I speak dismal Spanish, hence school! I also suspect that when I have some more Spanish under my belt, Julio with be quite chatty. In fact, he already is quite chatty, I just can’t make out most of what he says (again, SCHOOL!!). I am anxious to get to know her sons; the younger is studying to become a veterinarian and has promised me a field trip to the dairy farm he works at. And who are we kidding – that little señora, Hilda, does not stand a chance against my oncoming friend advances. I will have her as my friend, I just will. And did I mention I am going to Spanish school, where there will no doubt be lots of interesting and eager people who are also elated to be in school. Future friends abound. But at the moment it’s just me. A solo.

Oh, and lest I forget, one other thing for the very good category – lunch! I was trying to eat lunch at home as I had just bought a bounty of veggies (more on that later) but this roadside stall had everything I wanted – friendly proprietors, a line out the door and an unforgettable aroma wafting out of the 2×3 service window. I really didn’t even care what they were actually serving, which turned out to be pupusa, I could tell by just the line that this was the spot for lunch. A pupusa is a  typical Guatemala street food that consists of corn dough pocket stuffed with cheese or chicharrón, the former being the better option in my humble opinion. Served with a tiny bit of guacamole, pickled cabbage and salsa picante, this basically equals the best grilled cheese / cheese crisp one could ever want. I will figure out how to make these, but not today. Until then, enjoy some photos!


6 thoughts on “Welcome Chicks and Pupusas

  1. Ooooh. Lovely. I know what chicharrons are. Crispy grasshopper like things. They are tasty but dry. I think they might be good in that wrap. Anyway…the picture of the two cooks is WONDERFUL. You caught them as they are without awkwardness. Love your blog, love you. Josie

    1. Bofis, it is almost but not quite the same thing. A arepa is made from corn dough and a pupusa is made from nixtamal. It’s almost the same thing, the only difference is the alkaline soak for the maiz in nixtamal dough. Sooooo close, but not quite the same thing.

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