I flew out of San Francisco around noon; six hours and one $8 box of nuts and crackers later, I landed in Guatemala City. The plane touched down on a wet runway, with clear skies and sparkling lights. Immigration and customs were easy – no complications, no visa necessary for this welcoming country. The hotel van driver was waiting, looking professional in black suit and red tie.
Next morning, Julio (great driver) met me and we picked up the shiny black Pathfinder we’ll use for this small group of friends. Traffic is awful in Guatemala City yet he manages to dodge trucks and brake for dashing pedestrians. Some ancient buses spew out black clouds and Julio says there are pollution laws…but nobody enforces them. We head for nearby Antigua, only __ miles away, and it takes almost two hours, most of that spent getting out of the city!