My Guatemala



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Have you ever moved out from the one and only country you’ve been in and noticed some big changes? At least I did. I was seven years old when my parents decided to move to Guatemala. I didn’t really understand why but I was too young to go ahead and ask. I just went along with it. It was my first time going out the country I didn’t know what to expect. Once I got there I noticed some big changes. For example, schools were a lot more smaller than schools here in America. The food was very different, there was no fast food restaurants nearby. People usually ate beans with tortillas because the economy was bad. Also in case of an emergency there was no way how to get to a hospital quickly or just any place you wanted to go.



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Most elementary schools were very small. Most of them had only five classrooms.

First of all, something that I found like a big change for me was schools. They were very small. The school I went to only had five classrooms and there was no cafeteria, gymnasium or a clinic. It only had a small main office and the bathrooms were horrible. During recess we had lunch and everyone had to buy their own food which was tostadas that a lady would come everyday to sell and some drinks. If a student didn’t have money they would not eat. Almost everyday students would get into fights right after school and parents would get involved in it. Every year from the five classrooms teachers would pick the best student from each class and that student would represent that grade, that is called being a Abanderada. I studied in Guatemala for four years and I was chosen to be the Abanderada those four years. I thought it was easy to pass everything. One of the main things there was to have nice handwriting, it is something big for schools in Guatemala. Cursive was important too.  


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The money from Guatemala is called Quetzales.

Secondly, fast food restaurants or any expensive known restaurant here in America was not close to where we lived. In Guatemala the only place where we would find fast food restaurants like McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Friday etc, was in the Capital. Three hours away from where I used to live. We would only go there once in awhile to do paperwork or sometimes to parties that some of my family who lived there had. It was rare so when we went there we found the fast food restaurants so good since we didn’t really eat it that much. Unlike here in America it kind of gets boring because fast food restaurants are everywhere. Everywhere we go here there has to be some type of fast food. Gaining weight here is very easy for the same reason we can get the food whenever we want it. On the other hand, in Guatemala it is very likely to lose weight or to maintain the same weight. It actually felt really good to eat beans, eggs, cream and cheese in Guatemala. It was what most people usually ate all the time. Good thing we had family here in America who helped us all the time with money. We had the chance to eat different things not just beans.


Finally, one of the scariest things for me when I lived in Guatemala was when my little sister would get sick most of the time right after midnight. Where we lived it was about twenty minutes to get to the Pueblo where there was a hospital. But the scary part was that we had to transportation to get there. Almost no one had a car. The way we would get there during the day was that there was these little mini buses that would pass by the two small towns there picking up people to take them to the Pueblo. There was about ten buses that would pass about every thirty minutes. But at night when we had an emergency there was no way on calling one or even calling a taxi. There were no taxis. Unlike here we can get a taxi or an Uber at any time. What my mom would do when that happened was that she called the doctor she had for my little sister and would explain to him what was going on with her and the doctor told her exactly what to do. Then, we had to wait until morning to go to the doctor to get my sister checked out. It wasn’t easy.


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These were the mini buses people used to travel.

In conclusion, at first it was very hard for me to get used to it but as time flew by I started to get used to it. I still missed being in America but since I lived there for five years i made plenty of friends and got to know everyone around. It was weird at first but after experiencing different things as the years went on I enjoy it and thought it was nice after all. I came back when I was twelve to start all over again trying to fit in. It was hard again to try and forget about Guatemala to start again here America but here I am. My family and I are now stabled here and we are not thinking about moving again. It was a nice experience after all.