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ANTIGUA ........Founded in 1543, Antigua served as the colonial capital of Guatemala for over 200 years. And, it was only due the resilience of the citizens of this beautiful city that it was the number one "must see" destination in the country. (I, of course, would argue that it should be Tikal, but the guide book said Antigua. It was probably true because Antigua certainly did have a whole lot more traffic.)

The city which survived earthquakes, volcanoes and floods was still a jewel to behold. A walk down any street included colonial style buildings, terra cotta roof tops, cobblestone streets, pastel buildings, flowers and so, so many people.

MARTIN
MARTIN
Arrival in Antigua was late. It was dark. I never like to be out on the streets in a strange location in the dark. That was only compounded since I had all of my luggage with me. I quickly realized that Antigua really was Guatemala's number one tourist destination when I went to four hotels. The first one shocked me with a price of $50. The next two were full. By the fourth one, I was willing to pay $45 simply to have a room. You always have to pay for ambiance, and Antigua certainly had that!
MARTIN
MARTIN

The city of Antigua was a beautiful stroll. Cobblestone streets, which were extremely beautiful and equally hard to walk, were everywhere. There were a lot of indigenous women in such colorful costumes. Most wouldn't allow photographs unless you bought something or paid them. I told a couple of women that I didn't buy souvenirs. I only took photographs. My conversation was in Spanish, but a young girl quickly replied in English, "In your dreams!"

I never take photos of people who give me bad memories.

MARTIN
MARTIN

In the back corner of one market, I met Fernanda and her daughter Priscilla. They wore beautiful woven clothing and were so very charming! I sat down with them on the floor and drew a cartoon for Priscilla. Before leaving, I asked if I could take a photo. They so willingly posed for me. It was my best moment of the day.

MARTIN
MARTIN
MARTIN
Copyright 2014 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.

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