Travel Photography Isthmus
San Ignacio sort of slants into a river; a lopsided town with lots of lopsided streets. The lopsided streets are narrow, and dimly lit by popping neon lights. Many of the restaurants around here are Chinese, or Lebanese, or Indian. We had met some New Yorkers - Lisa and her triplets - in Southern Belize and agreed to meet at a Lebanese-owned bar just down from the Casa Blanca.
Vance and I stayed at the Casa Blanca because, well, we both needed a shower. Which is why I was rattled when the shower didn't work. I yelled. The hotel attendant heard this and yelled back through the walls that the San Ignacio main had just burst.
We met Lisa and the triplets at Eva's to talk about sharing the cost of the ride into Guatemala over beer and tortillas. It seemed appropriate to join a single mother and her children to Guatemala. It was a sense of safety for her, and cost-splitting for us. We sat at that light-flickering bar for hours talking about Woodstock, Los Angeles, and San Ignacio. Had I not noticed that the triplets were vigilantly keeping up with the conversation? Later, it would seem strange. Fourteen year old Americans are so often jack-ass stupid. What was different?
There is something about the triplets that reminded me of the Mayan children of Toledo. At fourteen, each is unusually inquisitive. Of a party they attended in their hometown of Woodstock; 'those guys were fried.' Of the patrons at Eva's, "barely human." At that age, I couldn't tell the difference between a heroin addict and blue-suit trash.
Lisa explained about taking her children to different parts of the country, and to Rome, and after that to Canada and Mexico. Was Lisa a wealthy mother who could afford the luxury? Not if she was splitting the taxi ride to Guatemala with us. Lisa was interested in her children's education, and she took it with a kind of hands-on ferocity.
We taxied in the morning to the border, with Lisa and her triplets, and crossed into Guatemala where some guy's cousin was waiting for us with a van.