Descendants of shipwrecked slaves from Nigeria; Jerry Garcia’s rumored Caribbean seaside bungalow hideout; warrior dances (see video below) and turtle shell drums; echoes of an accented
pigeon pidgin English that smacks of Jamaica; and a remarkable coconut seafood soup called tapado.
This is Livingston, home of the Garifuna. This is the other side of Guatemala.
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Some friends have suggested that we attach helmet cameras to our heads to give viewers the unabridged full monty version of our lives.
Trust us, you really don’t want to see all of it. Continue Reading »
There we were at the dock in San Pedro bargaining for a boat to Santiago. The price seemed prohibitively high for a whimsical afternoon side trip on Lake Atitlan. Natasha, another traveler hoping to take the same boat, also questioned the price.
“You know, I have a car here. We could drive. You can just give me some gas money.”
Sounded like a reasonable alternative.
Just as we turned to leave, the boat ticket salesman’s voice rose, “Carretera. Banditos. Peligroso.” (Highway. Bandits. Dangerous.) Continue Reading »
Sawdust carpets adorned with brightly-colored designs and cut fruit line the streets, giant carved floats sway on the backs of local men and women, and depressing dirges creep out of battered horns. Ceremony is high with marching Roman soldiers and elaborate crucifixion ceremonies as Guatemalan communities come together to mourn Jesus’ crucifixion and celebrate his resurrection and the close of Lent.
This is Semana Santa (Holy Week). And in Guatemala, no place takes to the occasion like the town of Antigua. We’ve never experienced a lead-up to Easter quite like it. The slideshow and video below show why. Continue Reading »
A Guatemalan cooking class? Aren’t you supposed to be learning Spanish?
Learning a new language is great, but doing so through the lens of food and markets strikes us as ideal. So when the topic of Guatemalan cuisine came up during our Spanish lessons (day two, as we steered each of our instructors there fairly quickly), we seized the opportunity and asked if one of our sessions could double as a cooking class. You’ll see the results in the video and recipe below. Continue Reading »
In case our Chinese market video turned your stomach, we offer something a bit more tasteful.
From the friendly Gansu bread man to the the giggling Qingdao dumpling ladies, China unfolds in a video montage of street food and kitchen scenes.
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Where can you find pig face manicures, dog steaks, gambling novice Buddhist monks, snake oil laxatives, and locals getting their teeth replaced on the street? How about dazzling embroidered traditional clothing, mountains of fresh greens, and meat so fresh that it still moves?
Only in China and only in this video.
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Bearded men, women in headscarves, pulled laghman noodles, pressed pomegranates, a boy who prepares his own vinegar sauce, and two Hoshang dumpling makers doing a dance around a traditional ceramic oven. This is China’s Kashgar night market. Continue Reading »
I sat down today to sift through our video footage from China with the intent of making a Chinese market video; I barely made it past the town of Kashgar (Xinjiang). What an incredible place.
Buried in the footage, I laughed my way through a procession of wooly camels, stubborn donkeys, cowboys and sheep at the old world Sunday livestock market. Continue Reading »
Welcome to the view inside the Shanghai Maglev (magnetic levitation) train once it reaches its maximum speed of 431 kilometers per hour. No typo there – that’s 268 miles per hour for the conversionally challenged. The trip from the center of Shanghai to the airport takes a cool 8 minutes and costs an even cooler 50 Y ($7.00).
Wonder what 260+ mph looks like in full motion? Check out the short video below and experience the Shanghai Maglev train from the comfort of your own home. This is modern Chinese development at its best. Continue Reading »