Monday, April 28, 2008

10 Things That Drive Me Crazy About Guatemala

Guatemala is a land of contradictions, and things that really don't make sense.
I've compiled a list of some of these, which either make you want to scream with frustration or laugh hysterically:
*Much of the country is starving, yet there seems to be an oversupply of ¨Pan de banano¨ (Banana bread) sellers, waiting to pounce at any moment.
*Signs advertising ¨Agua caliente¨ (¨Hot Water¨) at hostels and hotels are never accurate. I think I have only truly had hot water once.
*¨Happy Hour¨ is the biggest myth to hit Central America. It doesnt exist.
**The Nescafe conspiracy**(see below) means that every morning, without fail, one is woken by either one or a combination of howling dogs, crowing roosters or loud music.
*Religion is everywhere. Really. You cant escape it.
*When paying, no one ever has change.
*Sidewalks present a constant danger to pedestrians thanks to uneven paving and random holes. It's safer to walk on the roads.
*There is an oversupply of pharmacys, yet the only things they seem to sell are gauze and Pepto Bismo.
*Most big stores, including Subway and McDonalds, have private security guards armed with rifles. I am yet to figure out what they are really guarding--- hamburgers?
*¨Guatemalan time¨ is a unique phenomenom in which buses are always late and a group food order is never delivered as a group.
*The @ sign on Guatemalan keyboards is never universal. Its produced as a result of random combinations such as ALT G + 2; and my all time favourite, ALT + 6 4.
**The Nescafe Conspiracy is a global conspiracy by Nescafe to sell copious amounts of its coffee to sleep deprivated tourists. It does this in Central America via its secret breeding program aimed at producing an oversupply of loud, barking dogs and crazed roosters which wake up tourists extremely early in the morning. The outcome of this is a huge increase in the amount of coffee bought by tourists in the morning to combat fatigue.

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