ay Jamaica in soccer.The game was rowdy to say the least. After the game was tied 1-1 in the second half, Guatemala scored in the last few minutes. The crowd went wild, using drums, horns, vuvuzuelas and jumping up and down in their white and blue jerseys. The good news is that Guatemala won the game 2-1, leaving them in the running for the World Cup. The bad news is that their next game is against the United States.Apart from the soccer game on Oct. 12, the group of students from SAU has been able to experience other differences in culture. One event was a “blessing of the animals,” when people brought lizards, monkeys, turtles, dogs and kittens to one of the many local Catholic churches to be blessed.We have been attending various churches in Antigua, including Catholic mass either at San Francisco, which is the oldest functioning church in Guatemala (about 500 years old), the cathedral in downtown Parque Central (Central Park) or Escuela de Cristo, a church about a block away from many of our houses.
We also went to the beach on Saturday, Oct. 13, where we attempted to swim in the brutal, 10 foot waves. Paul Nemecek, director of the SAU Guatemala program, said the beach at Monterrico in Guatemala has the biggest waves he has ever seen.
Of course, we are still learning Spanish. We have started learning local phrases like “echar un cuaje,” which means to take a power nap, and “Que onda, vos?” which means, “What’s up, man?”
For more information on studying abroad in Guatemala or other semester abroad programs, visit the Cross Cultural Studies Office behind the library on Ogle Street or the Gilman Scholarship homepage at http://www.iie.org/en/Programs/Gilman-Scholarship-Program. You can also check out my blog at dshinabarger.wordpress.com.