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Peter and Terry's Adventures
24th Dec 2014 - 14th Jan 2015
And now it's 2015

We were pleased to be invited to a Christmas Eve Dinner with friends. We had a pleasant time, saw some old friends and met some new ones.  Christmas Day was just another day, as we hadn't planned any particular festivities.  

On New Year's Eve we attended the fund-raiser for the Open Windows Foundation, which supports a learning centre just outside Antigua.  This is a very popular event with wonderful appetizers and an inexpensive cash bar.  There's a silent auction and a hefty contribution to attend.  It is also the place where everybody comes, so we were able to meet and greet a number of folks we had not seen so far.  Later in the evening we walked over to the Panza Verde, an upscale hotel restaurant near us.  They have an open patio on the roof which was a good place to watch the fireworks.  And what a show it was!  Like last year, there was a big display in Antigua's Parque Central, numerous other neighbourhood displays, and each town around the valley also had its own fireworks, so for a couple of hours we were surrounded by fireworks. Regrettably we were unable to take pictures. We also saw a large number of Globos drifting in the sky.  The Globos are small paper hot air baloons, about 4 feet tall, with a small burner inside.  They lift off and float until the fire burns out then fall to the ground.  I am assured that there is no danger as the fire is out by the time they land, but you have to wonder!

Peter started off the new year with a week of Spanish tutoring - 4 hours a day for a whole week.  After a couple of frustrating days trying to make small talk with a teacher who talked too fast, he asked for a new tutor…  Rebecca was more in tune with his requirements and they had good conversations about cooking, ingredients and techniques.  (The previous tutor was a man who seemed to know nothing about being in a kitchen!)  She also helped him sort out some common expressions, verbs and pronounciation.  A long way from fluent, but he did understand 80-90% of what she was saying (thanks to slow and simple speech, no doubt).  The thing is that we can easily manouvre in the market, the stores, the restaurants, but most of the time we don't know what is being said to us, even though we can guess the context and respond appropriately.

Bridge started up with one trip to the city and another at a private home in San Pedro Las Huertas. We are hoping for a few more games during the week.  Peter has established a regular partnership with another Canadian (from Alberta) for Saturdays, and with a local friend for weekly games in the city.  Still working on local games...

Next: Volcan Fuego Erupts
Previous: And On To Guatemala

Diary Photos
9th Jan 2015  My "Classroom" at the School
All instruction at the schools here is one-on-one, and this large school had many cubicles like this.

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