And you think nothing can top machetes? Think again.

Concrete, machetes, what ever could be left to top this trip of wonder and awe—only 4 days in?

That would have to be driving into a non-tourist part of Guatemala City, watching Juan Carlos navigate the streets, and arriving at our final destination: a legit market that Andres didn’t even know existed. I bet you’re asking though, why exactly did Juan Carlos take us to the market for an unscheduled stop, after a long day of work? Continue reading

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What do you do after a long day of concrete-making?

…You learn that a machete is actually much harder to work with than it appears–pick axes, too, are much harder than I’d ever imagined.

The ancient supervisor who was guiding us, showed the teens how to use machetes: to watch him work them, you would think that machetes were simplistic yet sharp.  When I finally put my hand to the machete, I was stymied.  It was awkward and the bending over to swish it as you flicked your arm/wrist quickly resulted in a painful back.

Machetes, however, match nicely with this entry from my journal: “All of life is about being born–birthing into our fullness of being. When you come into rhythm with your nature, things happen of themselves.” See, the thing about machetes, is that as you use them in the correct way, as you use the stick to gather the grass so you can swipe at the roots, you come into rhythm. It’s the rhythm of the machete, of machete-ness. And, let me tell you, it’s a sweet rhythm: grass piles up in the clumps that we see in the United States, usually leftover from lawnmowers; the swing of your arm and your body align into motion that’s seamless.  This was the same motion from the concrete buckets assembly line of the day before, a motion that my body knew, even though I’d never ever picked up a machete or swung concrete buckets.  And in that smooth motion, is a sweet spot of productivity, of ease, of quality. Continue reading