That's Panajachel, Guatemala, my sweet little chickadees. And this little tutu is a goin'!
I'm heading back to the land of the Mayans next week, my third trip in eight months, to see my people in Antigua and then head out to Ati (the local slang for Lake Atitlan) to see some people and places. I have a dream. That's about all you need to know for now...
Ah, Panajachel. Some call it Gringotenango (place of the foreigners) as there are so many former hippies and expats from around the world living there. It's the main town on Lake Atitlan and it is where all the boats depart from to head out to the smaller towns on the lake like San Marcos la Laguna, the town I settled into back in January. Pana has some good energy to it. I'm going to sink my teeth in and see what flavors it brings me.
It's hot there right now so I'm looking forward to some light and heat and acting like a big fat cat lazing about in the sun, taking my daily naps and eating and drinking whenever I see fit. I also just found out that a lovely man who I met when I was there in January will be back on the lake when I'm there. Someone to play with! Happy little me...
I'll be staying at my usual haunt in Antigua, Casa Cristina, and my beautiful friend Rosario, who owns the joint with her husband, sent me the loveliest e-mail today welcoming my return and telling me I am more than a guest to them. She even gave me the Queen's discount! And she referred to room number 12, that sweet little slice of heaven on the top floor overlooking the rooftops and the room I always stay in as "your room." LOVE HER!
I'm flirting with the idea of splurging and staying at Hotel Dos Mundos in Panajachel as they have a fabulous pool and are right by the lake. Have bikini, will travel... And I could use some chill time right about now. Yuppity yup yup yup.
Did I mention my splurge hotel will be, like, $50 a night? That's my idea of a splurge! You can really have the most amazing experience there and have it be so incredibly affordable. My room in Antigua is about $25 a night. This little tutu is a smart traveler. Pay attention my lovelies as you might just learn a thing or two about how about to get the most bang for your buck. And with the falling dollar and sky rocketing euro making that lovely smile of yours turn upside down, couldn't you use a little fun for less? Mais oui!
I'm looking forward to my $13 massage with my ever colorful and utterly wonderful friend Deet in Antigua and my $2.50 lunch at Gringo's that fills me up for the entire day and requires a serious siesta after the fact due to the mass amounts of food they bring you. Think half a chicken, veggies, plantains, homemade tortillas, homemade banana bread and a delightful fresh fruity drink. Yeah, it's like THAT. Oh, and a latte or two at Fernando's caffe as well! That man roasts his own beans and is always a pleasure to chat with. He's damn good people.
Life, eh? Sometimes the yumminess just kind of finds you...
Roundtrip ticket to Guatemala City non-stop from Los Angeles: $342
Average price of hotels in Guatemala: $35
Shuttle ride out to Panajachel from Antigua with the Atitrans, the company that reserves a seat for me next to the driver so I don't get car sick: $12 (so worth it)
Opportunity to live, explore, reconnect and recenter? Priceless...