Guatemala doesn’t seem to have many Asian tourists yet, so I got a lot of attention wherever I went. When I walked around the streets, I found most people stopped to look at me! Especially when I was browsing the local market in Coban, I heard a Mayan lady, holding her little baby on her chest, was educating her baby by pointing me “A la Chino!” haha! Was I annoyed? Never! Every mom wants her child to grow up to be an intelligent person. : )
Here are the markets that I visited and shopped and some good scenery photos.
If I had more crowded eyebrows, do we look a little alike, right? : ) I bought some dried fresh oregano and colorful beans from her in Chichicastenango market. When I looked back after taking this photo, she was laughing quietly covering her face with both hands. She was shy! I wished we had exchanged our clothes for fun, but gave up because we could not understand each other’s language. How could it be possible to explain my suggestion with only body language!
(one of my blog readers Hanna gave me the answer. “Those little bitty spicy chilies are called chiltepe, or chile tepin. In Texas, they’re also known as “bird’s eye peppers”. Tepins are my favorite because of their heat. I miss them!”
Thank you Hanna! : )
hoho, check the mischievous looking catfish! One day I bought all these ingredients to throw a party for my fellow backpackers. The hostel had a kitchen on the rooftop, so I could cook this. I made rice and stir-fried fish and vegetables. The red shrimp behind the fish is very interesting because it is fermented and salty! It reminded me of Korean saewoojeot (fermented salted shrimp). The difference is that Korean saewoojeot contains some liquid, and tiny shrimp are used to make it, but Guatemalan salted shrimp are large and they have no liquid. The seller treated his shrimp like gold! When he weighed it using his small hand scale, his hands were shaking! : )
I minced this shrimp to salt the dish. Several lucky backpackers who tasted my food for free were very surprised to see all these ingredients I bought. : ) They enjoyed the food and one of the guys said, “oh, it’s been a long time to have this kind of homemade food!”
In the corner of Chichicastenango market, this man was surrounded by many people. Check the huge snake coiled around his left hand. He sometimes put the snake under his shirt so that the snake could crawl all over his upper body! Soon he took out a huge eyeball (I guess it’s a cow’s eyeball) from his bag and cut the edge of the eyeball with his razor a little by little while he kept speaking! Everybody looked so nervous!
I watched him about 30 minutes with those people. He eventually opened another bag and took out small bottles filled with yellowish liquid to sell! He used the poor snake, the huge eyeball, and the razor as tools to stop the people going away!
I felt sorry for the snake! There was no way to escape from him!
All the roads in Antigua are made of cobblestones. The man riding the bike looks ok in this photo, but actually he was barely managing to keep going forward. It was funny to watch he was almost falling off the bike!