Slowing Down

I didn’t take my laptop along to Guatemala, knowing that with Olivia along and so much to see and do, I likely wouldn’t have much time to write. This was true. In Guatemala, we walked everywhere, or, if the distance was too great, hailed a tuk-tuk, a small, three-wheeled vehicle that will never break any land-speed records. At breakfast, we lingered over coffee and fresh orange juice. When a hammock looked inviting, we hopped in. The pace was necessarily slower; nothing was instant. Even taking a drink of water required a trip to a local tienda to buy it bottled.

In Panajachel, we stayed in a hotel that offered guests a single computer, one that sometimes got Internet access and sometimes didn’t. On the few occasions I was lucky enough to log on, other travelers loitered behind me, shuffling their feet as they checked their watches.  I felt too guilty to type for more than ten minutes. I was in Guatemala. It didn’t make sense to rush.  

In my life here and now, I’m aware, it’s naive and probably impossible to ignore the instant nature of just about everything.  But after this last trip, I’m going to do my best to try.


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