This week I spent my last moments of freedom before the semester starts reading 5 different travel guides for Guatemala. No kidding. Pretty much cover to cover. And I have a PLN (to quote Pratchett’s Hat Full of Sky). OK, so I may win an award for most ridiculously over-planned travel itineraries, but I do generally abandon them once I arrive at my destination. I just like to know exactly what my options are. And how much everything costs. And I never get to go anywhere, so it’s like taking two trips–the one in my imagination and then the real one.

I bought my tickets earlier today. Now, please realize that I don’t leave for Guatemala for FIVE months. Nevertheless, it’s been consuming every scrap of my attention that isn’t already focused on my kids going to school (all three–I am no longer a homeschooler), my work and my thesis. I’ve barely left my house this week. I can talk about nothing else. If I weren’t boring my family & friends before, I certainly am now.

The reason I will be going to Guatemala is simple: I need to be able to speak Spanish more fluently if I want to continue working in public libraries. So I’ll be studying Spanish for two weeks in Quetzaltenango and traveling for the other week. Some sights I hope to see for myself:

Antigua And so on.

Now, in my studies, I have found out that Guatemala may the most geologically sketchy country in the world. Not only could I be toasted by the many volcanoes, smooshed under a mudslide, or crushed by an earthquake, but random sinkholes could plummet me straight to the netherworld:

To me, this just adds to Guatemala’s charm. What’s a little travel without the threat of impending doom?