Guatemala Travel Stories, Page 7

I Should Talk About What I Love

I am writing this book, whereby I will explain what I love, and the other day someone made an assumption saying,
"It is a travel book."
I said,
"No, it is a book about living."

I moved from Panajachel, Guatemala to San Pedro with one major goal, to be able to eat this Beef Burrito for 22 Quetzals daily at the Burrito Factory.

I love my life, I love how I live.
(I could have put a picture of a girl there.)

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Wednesday, June 9, 2010
By Andy Graham of


I thought Blogging was cathartic, able to elicit epiphanies on demand, well writing a book is "epiphany machine." When writing a book, I am forced to tie together all these thoughts and explain or relate them, when I Blog, I can have a start, middle and end, and they do not have to gel, they do not need to be enmeshed, no need for congruency, I can be normal human.

What do I Love
I love that I can sit here and muse for hours, weeks, or days, I have escaped the USA culture, there is no social pressure pushing me to buy a car. I can live in locations and situations that do not need to conform. I can move across a lake just to eat Burritos.

However, the true benefit is when I am forced to find something to do everyday, because I have no, "I need to do this." I am free to explore, and even more important, I can work on projects that are fun, and a trivial benefit, I make more money that insure I never leave paradise.

I am more than happy to explain how to go live in places all over the world for months on end wonderful apartments on the edge of lakes, with views of Volcanoes. I am not that excited to explain to you how to traipse across Africa or South America where I know many of you will be robbed and have an "ordeal" as my friend Robin from says.

Travel, Tours, and Vacations are Ordeals; living in Paradise is an insult to you. I was talking to Boy Genius yesterday, and I said,
"I get embarrassed explaining some of my rooms, for one, they are off theme, I keep telling people I am Hobo, but I live in Luxury, this just is going to throw up red flags. But even worst, I feel as if I am bragging, my Mother does not want me to rub this into peoples faces."
"I living in Paradise in a Hobo Budget."

The bottom line, I work less than retired people do, I do only want I like to do, and I thrive and prosper, the world is my playground. I travel across countries for enjoyable challenges, but if I want to, I can live in Paradise and Luxury, but just renting rooms by the month. It is moving that makes this confusing, travel is chaos and I like that, but I cannot get passionate about telling people to follow me, it is not for everyone, but this living in Paradise by the month is for the people smart enough to understand, there are rooms on planet earth for 2-8 dollars per day. When I explain these rooms, the reader assumes I am lying, go figure, well, that is ok, some of know, there are tens of thousands people living outside the same as me, and some need to stay inside the box.

I love it outside the box.

I Should Talk About What I Love

Watching Young and Restless Outside USA

I was thinking, I would like to invite my Mother and Father to live in Paradise as I jump form Paradise location to location.

Melody Thomas Scott stars as Nikki

Oops, I asked myself,
"How will they watch the Young and the Restless?"

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Tuesday, June 8, 2010
By Andy Graham of


The Philippines has a little more USA orientated television, I wrote a friend there Jan and she says, I read books; I do not think I can watch Soap Operas.

Eric Braeden stars as Victor Newman in The Young and the Restless on CBS

I talked with Boy Genius in India, my tech, he says go to

I go to , and it says to me, I will translate,
"We do not sell enough advertising in your country, therefore we will show you, sign up and when the advertising arrives, we will tell you."

I got to CBS

I think my parents can watch in the USA where they do not need this link, and they cannot watch here in Paradise where it is needed.

I am Good Son
Ok, yes, maybe I am not so excited my Mother and Father watch the "You and the Restless" everyday, I know they tape it, etc, and I often am asked to help them do the electronics when I am home to help them. This is not about me, it is about them, and it makes them happy.

How can I make them happy in Paradise? I can I allow people who want to watch their Soap to come and live here? (Many parents come down here to smoke dope, I am the lucky one, they only watch Soap Operas.)

I am told a VPN would work, but how can I do this, I do not want to pay 15 dollars per month. I have two designate servers, I should be able to set this up and give to my friends, or charge something reasonable like 15 dollars per year.

I tried to go download on Torrents, it does not seem to work, and I can download my version of Soaps called "24" or "Lost," but not my Parents, where do I go from here…?

Watching Young and Restless Outside USA

Too Many Choices Makes Me Crazy

I must share this with my friends; this video is excellent, even better than excellent, because it tells me why sometimes I am unhappy.

Watch the video below called:
"Barry Schwartz on the paradox of choice

I have two hammocks on my Hotel Balcony, the choice is simple, and I am happier.

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Sunday, June 6, 2010
By Andy Graham of


Video Below

If you do not see a video above these words, it is because you are reading by email, Click Here Videos

Video Above

I am studying a paradox of my own, I have lived in about 700 hotel rooms in my last 12 years of travel, and there is one premise that is false.
"The more you pay, the better the room." or maybe said,
"You get what you pay for."

The reason is this, a Hotel owner does not enter all the Hotels, truthfully, they have no idea the quality of the Hotel next door, they prices rooms according to what they feel is correct. A person who is from the USA will price the same room 10 times more than a local, there is almost an irrelevant relation between price and quality.

There is a placebo effect on rooms though, and I am not sure it is possible to explain this away, the person who pays the most, generally feels they were in great room. Hotels are like this, the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing, or the Hotel on the left, does not know what the Hotel on the right is doing.

Too Many Choices Makes Me Crazy

Pacaya Volcano Photos

A great photo of the eruption in May of 2010, a great one for a screensaver or to forward to friends.

On May 27, 2010, the Pacaya volcano erupted, followed by several tremors. At approximately 20:00 hours there was a strong eruption ejecting debris and ash columns up to 1500 meters. Ash rained down in many Guatemalan cities to the northwest of the volcano, including Guatemala City. The volcanic ash fall has been pelting Guatemala City, and the international airport, La Aurora. The National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) declared a red alert for the communities near the volcano, and recommended the evacuation of some of them. Noti7 reporter Anibal Archila, one of the first to cover the event, was reported killed by volcanic debris.

President Álvaro Colom declared a state of calamity in the region adjacent to the volcano, and the Ministry of Education closed the schools in the departments of Guatemala, Escuintla and Sacatepequez. Heavy rainfall from Tropical Storm Agatha worsened the emergency situation, causing lahars, landslides and widespread flooding across the country. However, people working in coffee fields considered the rain brought by the storm to be helpful, removing ash from their trees.

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Saturday, June 5, 2010
By Andy Graham of


1976 Eruption

Pacaya is an active complex volcano in Guatemala, which first erupted approximately 23,000 years ago and has erupted at least 23 times since the Spanish conquest of Guatemala. Pacaya rises to an elevation of 2,552 metres (8,373 ft).After being dormant for a century, it erupted violently in 1965 and has been erupting continuously since then. Much of its activity is Strombolian, but occasional Plinian eruptions also occur, sometimes showering the nearby city of Antigua with ash.

Pacaya is a popular tourist attraction. Pacaya lies 30 kilometres (19 mi) southwest of Guatemala City and close to Antigua. The volcano sits inside the Escuintla Department.

In the late 1990s, there were frequent armed robberies on its slopes, which negatively affected tourism. However, by 2006, reports of violence decreased in line with increased security efforts by the government. Guatemalan and foreign tourism have increased.[citation needed]

So far, the last activity reported has been the eruption that peaked on May 27, 2010, causing ash to rain down in Guatemala City, Antigua and Escuintla.

Geological history
The Pacaya volcano is a part of the Central American Volcanic Arc, a chain of volcanoes stretching from the northwest to the southeast along the Pacific coast of Central America, formed by the tectonic subduction of the Cocos Tectonic Plate beneath the Caribbean Plate. Pacaya lies on the southern edge of a sizable volcanic caldera formed in the Pleistocene age which contains Lago de Amatitlán. This caldera has been the source of at least nine very large explosions over the past 300,000 years, erupting a total of about 70 cubic kilometres (17 cu mi) of magma.

After the last caldera-forming eruption 23,000 years ago, several smaller vents within and around the caldera have seen eruptive activity. Pacaya is the largest post-caldera volcano, and has been one of Central America's most active volcanoes over the last 500 years. It has erupted at least 23 times since the Spanish conquest, producing basalt and basaltic andesite.

About 1,100 years ago, the volcano's edifice collapsed, causing a huge landslide. Deposits from the landslide travelled about 25 kilometres (16 mi) from the volcano down to the Pacific coastal plain. The landslide left a large crater, within which the current active cone has grown. The presence of a magma chamber at shallow depths beneath Pacaya means that distortion of the cone leading to instability and future landslides remains a hazard to the surrounding areas.

Pacaya VolcanoWith its almost continuous activity, the volcano has been a popular location for tourism. Pacaya is easily accessible from Guatemala City and from Antigua. The volcano and surrounding area now lie within the Pacaya National Park, which was created to supervise and protect tourism in this region. The Pacaya Park generates its income from tour groups who are charged a small fee to enter the park.

In 1998, several explosive eruptions emitted lava, debris and ash columns with a height of 1500 m - 5000 m. Ash fall affected nearby cities including Guatemala city and La Aurora airport.

During 2006, a slight increase in Pacaya's volcanic activity brought about the creation of several lava rivers that slowly flow down its slope. Word about these phenomena spread, and local tourism increased significantly.

Pacaya Volcano Photos

Ebay is Possible with Slow Travel

I would like to discourage Travel, and maybe offer up the term "Mobile HouseHolders," if we stop acting like we are hoboes, vagabonds, nomads, and adventurers, we could see the wood for all the trees.

If you do the Sequential Travel or Serial Travel at a slow pace, maybe moving every two months, then people could earn money selling products on or

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Friday, June 4, 2010
By Andy Graham of

I tried one time to sell items on, and for sure this does not work for a traveler, a person needs to constantly monitor activity and reply.

Just a thought, now to find a list of products people can sell from anywhere, that somehow restocks itself, and ships itself.

Ebay is Possible with Slow Travel

Agatha Guatemala Photos

Photos of Tropical Storm called Agatha, in June of 2010. Lake Atitlan in Guatemala is surrounded by large mountains covered with vegetation; the rains started on Thursday or Friday last week and fell almost continuously ending on Monday.

The rills grew to become gullies, they turned into streams, and then formed rivers, and then unfortunately the waters became dangerous as they:

1. Changed Course
2. Became bigger
3. Meandered
4. Flooded

Panajachel River next to the city of Panajachel on the shores of Lake Atitlan, this river feeds into Lake Atitlan.

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Thursday, June 3, 2010
By Andy Graham of


Photos of the Storm Damage
If you go to this link, you can start to choose thumbnails and share them on Facebook.
Guatemala Photos of Agatha

Follow the Photos
You can follow all the new daily photos by Andy Graham, by subscribing to this travel journal and you will receive a link in your e-mail box. I will be taking more photos as I travel by boat to the other villages around Lake Atitlan.

Agatha Guatemala Photos

Lake Atitlan Who Will Stop the Rain

8:50 PM, Monday night, I can hear the rain, and I cannot avoid thinking about this anymore, I am safe, dry, and again I have avoided disaster. And yet I hear there is over 100 dead around the lake from land slides caused by the rains.

People Die

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Monday, May 31, 2010
By Andy Graham of


It rained constantly for 2-3 days, and then stopped today, and I hear stories, I have not gone and investigated, I do not want to see, know or feel this, but I will say a prayer.

Who will stop the rain?

The rain has stopped, it is 9:02 PM, please stop, I not want to hear the rain, this sound makes reality creep into my brain.

I know I am safe, even when I am not, that is my lucky star.

Lake Atitlan Who Will Stop the Rain

Oops I Maybe I Work More Than 4-Hours

I purchased the book "The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss," from to read on my Kindle PC, I do NOT own a Kindle, and I read on my computer. Well, that did not work, so I went to the Torrent Systems and downloaded a PDF file of the book so I could work.

Is this work, it needed to be done?

Guatemala has this trend; they are using people dressed up like characters to advertise, I enjoy this type of advertising more than their Tigo Cell phone vans with incredibly noisy loudspeaker systems.

San Pedro, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala --- Monday, May 31, 2010
By Andy Graham of


Have to Work
I am calling up tons of people using and asking their opinions, I am working on this book and I know the more opinions I have, the more confusion I am able to work on, and the more clarifications I can explain.

I think I am doing something almost the same as Timothy Ferris in the 4-Hour workweek, so I decided; I need to read his book. Nevertheless, I have got many opinions and here was a dialog.

I would like to talk to you about the 4-hour workweek and my book I am writing
Hey Andy. When would be a good time?
I do not work... hehehe
When you can?
James: I will be home later this morning and I can call via Skype.

Ironic Conversations
Almost everyone I respect and has read this book is probably works too much, they all love the book and I am sitting here writing this post thinking. (I have not talked to James yet...)

"Gee, I am 100 percent sure this book has some great ideas."
For example:

The New Rich: (Defined by Timothy Ferris)
"The New Rich (NR) are those who abandon the deferred-life plan and create luxury lifestyles in the present using the currency of the New Rich: time and mobility."

Ok, I admit, I have an over-abundance of time and mobility; I must be the "Super Rich."

Ok, I lie, can I really say reading a book is work? I think in reality, I cannot remember the last time I worked, I cannot remember the last time I did something I did not want to do.

I mean, work could be defined as doing something we do not want to do, and everything we want to do is fun, hobbies, projects, enjoyable pastimes or luxury.

I have been having this truly cathartic moment, I have slowly realized, I sort of enjoy washing my clothes, I enjoy doing small things around my room, even though I can easily afford to pay to have my clothes cleaned, it is enjoyable, what is not enjoyable to me is getting bad values. I enjoy doing well at things, I enjoy buying well.

Talking with these many people on Skype, I also realized, oops, I have this secret life, because the name of this site is "Hobo," I leave out my luxury, I do not talk about it, I hide it, then I get sort of angry when people think I live like a pig, but I never truly explain how I live. Well, that is going to change, I am going to stop pretending I am living like a Hobo. This is the joke of writing this book, I realized I went out truly believing I was going to be poor traveler, and really, I have become part of the "Super Rich." Hmm, I would get an ugly feeling calling this the "New Rich" with the (NR) thing for trendy ideas. There are 1000’s of people doing what I do, I am for sure not the new one to figure out how to live this (NR) lifestyle, there is nothing new about it, there are tons of ex-draft dodgers from the Vietnam war here, that never stopped.

Ok, what is real, I have learned how to make money, and not work. I mean, I make money and never do something I do not want to do, or something like that.

I am trudging my way through this book, I am on page 17, I am not going to give my true feeling or opinions, this is one of them books, where maybe you should read, I do not think it can hurt you. I am sure I will harvest some good idea, but then again, this is work for me.

Oops I Maybe I Work More Than 4-Hours

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