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Memorable Moments of Guatemala – Despite without a cent

Goodbye Guatemala!

Tal vez, toda la pobreza necesita en este momento, es simplemente “El Permiso Por Un Sueño” para restaurar su dignidad. Perhaps, what poverty needs right now, is simply “The Permission To Dream” to restore its dignity. — from our first post in Guatemala We shall start our Guatemala story right at the end, when we were […]

Sharing at Quetzalroo

Guatemala Dream 081

Our last stop in Guatemala – the city. We met our host, Manuel, the owner of hostel Quetzalroo during our second week in Guatemala, at our retreat in Isla Verde. Manuel and his partner were putting up flyers all over Lake Atitlan to promote hostel Quetzalroo. We walked past each other 3 times and Manuel […]

Of “Uncles” and “Aunties” in Antigua

It was like a "family gathering"!

Once in Villahermosa, Tabasco, Mexico, our host, Angelina said to the couple who were giving us a ride to Palenque, “It’s from my hands to yours. Please take good care of them.” And when we reached the house of our host in Palenque, the couple said to her, “It’s from our hands to yours. Please […]

Sharing at Rainbow Cafe in Antigua – “Listening” to the Universe

Paola's photo of the dreams in their hands

It felt like most of our sharing sessions – we shared from our hearts, and set an intention for people to open their hearts and truly “listen”… We collected hands at the end of the sharing, just like we did at every sharing in Latin America… A few days later, we received an unexpected email […]

To Val

Finally...lost in the song

“你只要相信什麽 你就一直去做 有一天就會成真。” — 田馥甄 (Hebe) “If there’s something you believe in, Just keep doing it It (Your dream) will come true one day.” — Hebe (Taiwanese Singer) She was talking about her first solo album, “To Hebe”. First spotted in a singing competition and then recruited to be part of a girl band “S.H.E.”, it took […]

“Aunty” Arlaine

her blessings

We first met Arlaine through Niños del Lago, an NGO we “stumbled upon” at Chinitas’. Some weeks later, after we returned to Pana from the lake and Xela, Arlaine invited us to her cottage for lunch, “I will buy, and you will cook.” We love connecting and exchanging stories with people over home-cooked meals, so […]

Niños del Lago – When we pause and give attention

Standing amidst her dream, Arlaine was radiating joy from within

We walked into Niños del Lago’s office upon seeing “Inspiring the Dreams of Guatemalan Children” on a banner inside the office. How apt – we thought. And we were hoping we could co-organise a sharing session for the children they work with. The staff in the office, Armando, spent some time with us to explain […]

Local Markets – One of the best ways to know a place and its people

The nostalgia of "live" chickens for sale - no longer allowed in Singapore

*a pictorial story At 8AM in the morning (which is considered late by Guatemalan standards), we set off from Uncle Robert’s house to Mercado Sololá: Our “harvests” for the day: Help us share one more story – Your spare change, even if it’s just $1, will go a long way

Uncle Robert – Expecting Magic (over lots of good food and beer)

"Uncle Robert, we miss you!"

This is us. We had just spent 60Q (~USD8) on ferry tickets to and fro Santa Cruz, thinking we got ourselves a much needed house-sitting job, only to find out that they were asking for USD800/month of rent. We should be disappointed, deluded, despaired…and maybe even a little desperate at that moment. But you if […]

Sharing at Casa Cakchiquel – the house of many fires

The fire of Casa Cakchiquel

“I’d like you to meet my friend, Robert. He is making his dream come true by restoring an old house. It is his dream house.” Helga said to us one morning. On first thoughts, we were like “Uhh… dream house? Some rich man buying over an old house and restoring its extravagance so that he […]

Helga and The Kids – Our Family in Guatemala

"I want you to keep this key. This is your home. It will always be."

This is a story of how two Couchsurfers met, fell in love, and became family… The Meeting – A Fiasco Beetroot Dinner When we wrote to Helga our couchsurfng request, we told her that “We love sharing stories over home-cooked meals; and certainly would love sharing our grandmother’s recipes with you and the family! On […]

Casa San Bartolomé – Allow us to share

Guatemala Dream 054 and 055

We received a warm reply for our email to Casa San Bartolomé to ask for a sponsorship stay for 5 nights. When we met Anabella, the owner, she said, “This is a nice project. And my husband and I want to be a part of it; even it’s just supporting you through hosting you. We […]

Cross the line – Get “Out Of Bounds”

Set off - trekking shoes, headlamp, 2 litres of water & sleeping bag checked

A week before my birthday, Val asked me, “What present do you want for your birthday?” I thought for a while and whispered back, “Can I have anything I want?” Val’s head nodded an affirmative nod. I took a deep breadth and said, “I want to do the Santa Maria Volcano Full Moon Hike.” I […]

Momostenango – In Search of Blessings

The Mayan Ceremonial Fire

We found out about Abuelo Rigoberto during one of our internet research sessions. We call him Abuelo, which means “Grandfather”, because it is a term of respect, a way for us to show reverence… for the “wise men” of every culture. After connecting with Abuelo via several emails, we finally confirmed arrangements to visit him, […]

33! Celebrate An Appetite for Life!

We sat on the pavement outside The Bake Shop and finished BOTH the blueberry and strawberry buns at one go!

A week before my birthday, Val asked me, “How do you want to celebrate your birthday?” Without even thinking, I (Tay) said, “No need to celebrate. It’s just another day, which is no different from any other day.” Val insisted and the night before my birthday, she gave me an instruction, “We have to wake […]

Sharing in Cafe RED Xela – “Aprovechar” The Guatemalan Dream

Sign #2: Projector Cable Broken

The thought of stopping had been in our minds for a while. Not stopping as in packing up and going home (tho’ we sometimes do entertain that thought); but rather, to *pause* and really catch up on the writing and videos. We had wanted to do so on Molokai, Hawaii; and the turn of events […]

Casa Renaissance Guesthouse – Warm Hospitality in Cold Xela

Guatemala Dream 049

During one of our online research sessions, we stumbled upon an elder who runs a Mayan school to teach young Mayan children – Mayan math, astrology, medicine and spirituality. The school is his dream; and part of his continuing efforts to pass on the Mayan culture and teachings from his abuelos (grandfathers) to his grandchildren. […]

Lisa’s Birthday Dinner – Bcos Sharing Makes Us Feel Rich

Happy Birthday Lisa!

“肚子餓嗎?我買你們吃飯!(literally meaning: Are you hungry? I’ll buy you lunch!)” Lisa asked in Mandarin (she’d spent a couple of years in China before this) after we returned to Pana from our sharing session in Santiago. And so we headed to one of Lisa’s favorite eateries for lunch together: There were many-a-times We frustrate ourselves at the […]

Sharing with local students at Santiago – “El sueño que tienes en tu mano…”

Group Photo with everyone from the Santiago Atitlan School Sharing

Lisa was introduced to us by our Panajachel Couchsurfing host, Helga. She is in Guatemala working with a program called Access as a teacher trainer with English classes in certain small towns around Lake Atitlan. When she heard about our project and our school visits, she sent us an email invitation to ask if we’d […]

Sacred Art Teahouse Sharing – Walking the 3 Worlds, Finding Myself, I have LOVE

"We want to give these to you!"

Sarah connected us to Ajna, the owner of Sacred Art Teahouse and we co-organised a sharing session at her place during our stay in San Marcos. And this post’s title is basically sums up our experiences at the sharing. Walking the 3 Worlds “Tell them what your dream is, Robin. I like what you said […]

San Marcos with Sarah – Everything in its own perfect timing

And there were 4!

We met Sarah, a midwife cum doula from New York, en route her dream in Guatemala, at our IslaVerde sharing session. When we asked the people who came to the sharing to share their dreams with us on their hands, Sarah wrote: A school for midwives that will inspire a local and global shift in […]

Mikaso Hotel – Space for Nourishment

Guatemala Dream 022

We left IslaVerde, restored and ready for to continue on our journey. Waiting for us on San Pedro de la Laguna, was our hostess, Laurence from Mikaso Hotel. At the beginning of this journey, we found it difficult for us to reach out and ask for help – be it in sponsorship for our gear, […]

Hiking Tzununá with Nile – Drenched in Abundance

Soaking every bit of it up

During our Retreat on IslaVerde, we met a resident living in the neighbouring pueblo, Jaibalito. His name is Nile; and he attended our sharing session at IslaVerde. After the session, he invited us to hike the “Tzununá falls” with him. “It was where I wrote my book. There used to be a trail there, but […]

IslaVerde – the island where we “came ashore”

Collected thoughts, Restored souls

Cyanobacteria. The blue-green algae choking up Lake Atitlan due to pollution from the people living around the lake. This was the sight that greeted us throughout our 15 minute boat-ride across the lake from Panajachel to Santa Cruz de la Laguna, where our new host, IslaVerde awaits. And it perfectly reflected our state of being […]