Monday, February 22, 2010

Would You Like to Go to Our Private Beach House for the Weekend?

Um, YES.

In our first few weeks at NPH, we met and made friends with some friends of friends of NPH -- one of those weird acquaintance connection kind of things. We've seen them a few times in the past few months, and this past weekend, Sam, Tressa, and I received an invite to tag along on a weekend to the beach.

It was described to us like this: "Our family has this house on the Pacific. It's on a private beach, and we can only access it by boat. We can go water skiing, hang out, and maybe even see whales if the timing is right. Wanna come?"

We would have been idiots to say no.

So, Friday night, Tressa, Sam and I hopped in our friend's car with no real idea of what we were in for. We met up with another car-full of friends and drove a couple hours to the beaches of Las Lisas, Guatemala. I didn't know at the time, but I've since done some Googling, and Las Lisas is considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Guatemala.

Everything they told us was true too. When we got there, we parked the car, loaded all of our stuff into a small lancha (boat), and took a 20-minute boat ride to the house. The water glowed in the dark from the plankton the whales feed off of, and every single person in the boat -- Americans and Guatemalans -- spent the majority of the 20-minute ride with eyes fixed on the sky. I have never, ever, seen that many stars in my life.

The house was a simple but great beach house. It had a thatched roof, kitchen and common rooms, and 4 bedrooms. The rooms were only partially divided from one another by lattice windows, and they didn't have ceilings, just the thatched roof overhead. There were tons of windows and doors that we kept open the entire weekend, so the whole effect was constant beach breeze in and out of the house, day and night. At night, we fell asleep to the sound of the waves crashing on the beach. The bathroom was a separate building outside, and there was no fresh water anywhere in the house (minus the giant jug we brought with us). The shower and all the taps had salt water from the ocean. So, no one actually showered a real shower (since salt water showers just make you feel even more gross, eww), and let me say, brushing your teeth with salt water is not the most pleasant experience.

But the weekend was incredible. The house was on a peninsula about 10 miles away from the El Salvador border. If we walked out the front door of the house, we were on a gorgeous black sand beach along the Pacific. The water was so warm, and the waves were so perfect. We swam like crazy. If we walked out the back door of the house, we were on the Canal de Chiquimulilla, which looked like something out of the Amazon. We spent the entire weekend swimming in the ocean, tanning on the beach, water skiing on the canal, relaxing, playing cards, watching the sunset over the ocean and opposite the volcanoes, and just hanging out (sadly, we saw no whales). The weekend seemed to go on forever, and the three of us honestly couldn't believe we were really there.

Today, the weekend has caught up with us and we are exhausted and sore from sunburns and too much waterskiing. I've been basically worthless all day at work, but it was sooo worth it. The whole weekend reminded me of trips to Lake Cumberland -- if any of you Kentuckians are reading. It was two carloads of friends, in the middle of nowhere (even by Guatemala standards), a few bags of chips and some burgers, a case of beer, a deck of cards, sun, sand, and amazing water everywhere we looked.

This is the life.

The house.

Backyard patio/party area right on the beach. Amazing.

Welcome to Las Lisas!

And now to the backyard...

About to take a peek at the canal...

Backyard canal! To access the house, we took a boat along this for about 20 minutes, and the canal is also where we went water skiing!

Thatched roof of the house. Not sure why I thought this deserved a photo.

Sam, me and Tressa!

Sam and me, loving life on this Guatemalan beach. :)

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