Sunday, September 28, 2008

Life with the Roesch Familia

We arrived in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala (or Xela as most people call it) late Saturday afternoon, after a 5 hour ride on a economy bus with a seat that wouldn't recline and a rough road most of the trip. We were dropped off at the Minerva terminal with our bags, among a plethora of "chicken buses" (old US school buses, painted wild colors) and stray dogs. Dragging our suitcases along, we look and look for a terminal building and soon find out that no actual building exists. Ben spotted a payphone and with a little help we call our contact from ICA (our language school), who speaks very little English. He directs us to meet him at a Pizza Hut that turns out to be quite an uphill hike from the terminal. We must have been quite a site - 2 gringos, 4 suitcases, and 1 guide book among 20 or so chicken buses!

After a few phone calls to find out where to take us, our driver drops us off at the home of Lillian, Elvira & Isabel Roesch, 3 sisters who live in their family home with a teenage boy, Eric, the son of Elvira. The Roesch home is small, but has a room for students in the back with 2 beds....and that's about it. While the accommodations aren't really very pleasing to us (we're sleeping in a saggy double bed and have a cold shower), the family is great. Lillian seems to spend the entire day in the kitchen preparing meals. Ben absolutely loves the Guatemalan cuisine. I don't think it is all that bad either, but I seem to have gotten a stomach bug, so eating isn't all that pleasant for me.

A lot of other extended family members come and go, including an older son, grandson, other sisters, cousins and neighbors. One night this week we (like 10 of us) were all sitting around the table for cena (dinner around 8pm) when Jose (the older son) jumps up and flicks off the lights. Apparently he saw the overhead light short out. So we found a candle and a flashlight and dined in the dark. It was kind of nice. After dinner Jose crawled up into the ceiling and wearing my headlamp (that I brought just in case of an electricity outage) repaired the short. It was a funny family bonding experience.

So far these are our only photos of the family, but stay tuned for more.


Donna and Laurel said...

Hi, Just found...and love your blog! Is "Colfax", Colfax, WA?

Krista & Ben Lengacher said...

No, it´s Colfax Avenue in Denver, CO. Thanks for following us on our adventure.