The road from Toto was still pleasant for a while but one could sense its drawing near the panamerican highway. The density of chickenbuses grew, sometimes blocking whole junctions while letting off people or taking on new passengers while the exhausts and the sounds of their horns filled the air.

Just outside the city, i saw a peloton on their racing bikes complete with jerseys and later another group of riders dressed in a similar fashion overtaking me on the way towards the center. It was nice for a change to get in one of the bigger cities with still a couple of hours of daylight to spend. I visited one of the three spanish schools i had contacted. It was a friday afternoon and not much happening around the school. Ilsy from the staff showed me around, a quircky and lively person, sadly no one of us spoke the others tounge very well. The main advantage was, that the school has a couple of rooms for students, i didn’t want to have to walk far to school when the class would start the next week at eight in the morning. And i didn’t want to crash at a guest family with my two words of spanish a day before christmas. Here’s the view from the room.


Almost every morning it looks different. The light changes, sometimes the mountains are covered in mist and the clouds never run out of new shapes and forms. Dusk lasts only a short while but has its charme too.


Xela seems to have quite a bit to offer. A bit of a music scene, places which show movies, some bicycle culture, vegetarian eating options and nice surroundings for daytrips. I’m happy here so far. The first few days of spanish lessons are over and it reminded me that learning a language is quite a task. But i am motivated and am looking forward to the signs of progress along the course of the next few weeks.

I rarely use my bicycle around town in the busy and narrow streets, most of them just passable in one direction and with coblestone which is rather rough. So, i walked most of the times and explored the city bit by bit with some nice views from time to time like here over the cathedral at the parque central.


More about the life in the school on the next page.

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