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Peter and Terry's Adventures
15th Feb 2015 - 7th Mar 2015
To the Lake (Not the Pacific)

Our trip to the Aeroclub on the Pacific coast was rescheduled, rescheduled again, and finally cancelled.  So we have no account of the drive, the stay, the food or the Pacific Ocean.  Perhaps another year.

Peter's "significant" birthday was in February, but we decided to postpone a celebration until our Canadian guests arrived in March.  Terry organized a catered dinner for ten people - including several of our very good friends here in Antigua.  Two chefs, a kitchen helper and a waitress prepared and served a four course dinner in our house.  The event was deemed a great success!

The next day we headed to Lake Atitlán for a couple of days. At 9:00 we were on the road to Panajachel on the north side of the lake.  As in other years we were planning to stay at the Posada de Santiago, on the south side of the lake.  As the road to Santiago is considerably longer and rougher than the road to Pana we had to organize a boat to take us to the private dock at the Posada.  Immediately on arrival at Pana we were accosted by boat drivers wanting our business.  After much negotiation we settled on a price, only to discover that Oscar (our driver) had said we were going to San Marcos, a much shorter trip.  So we began the negotiations again with Santiago as the destination.  The trip across the lake took about 25 minutes, and the lake was very calm at the outset.  The lake is known for the breeze that picks up by early afternoon, and we had aimed to get to Santiago by noon.  That day the winds were a little early, and a good chop developed as we approached Santiago.

We lunched, rested, swam and explored for the afternoon.  Our guests joined Dolores Ratzan for a tour of the city the next day, and we walked into town, getting completely turned around but finally finding the road from the dock with all the craft shops.  A tuk-tuk whisked us back to the Posada for lunch with Dolores, while our guests enjoyed lunch in the town.

Overnight the winds piped up and became very gusty.  I kept thinking "It's going to be a fun trip back across the lake."  And it was!  We pounded into a heavy chop almost all the way, and the trip took over 40 minutes compared with the 25 minutes the day before. Fortunately we were going straight into it, so although there was a lot of spray not much water actually came aboard. Oliver collected us shortly after we arrived in Pana,  he had been delayed by gusty winds and some light rain on the highway, and lots of traffic in Solola, the town just before Pana.  Once we got back to the Pan American Highway, we found ourselves in mist and cloud for long stretches and it became quite cool.  This is very unusual for this time of year.  We stopped for lunch at the Katok restaurant in Tecpan, then continued in improving weather, arriving in Antigua about 3:30 pm.

Just to put it into perspective, the Lake is about 45 kilometers from Antigua as the crow flies, but with the twisting roads and boat ride, it was almost 5 hours for the return!  Google Maps shows that it is 111 km from Antigua to Pana by road!

Next: Return to Winter
Previous: Volcan Fuego Erupts

Diary Photos

The Catering Crew

The Table

Dining Room

The Menu

View of Lake Atitlán


Flowers and Pottery on the roadside

Behind a "Chicken Bus"

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