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The original world nomad "Real knowledge is to know the extent of one's ignorance." - Confucius.


MEXICO | Monday, 14 December 1998 | Views [1384]

We had decided to try to cross from Guatemala to Mexico at the ruins of Palenque. As we bumped along the soggy road, pools of water and mud evidence of the recent hurricane, we were presented with a salutary snapshot of rural, lowland Guatemala. Mud brick thatched huts, barefoot ragged children - lots of children. No power. Schools? Not a chance. Such little opportunity here. A firm believer in the ability of education to improve peoples lives, here a little education could be a dangerous thing.

Beggars are evident everywhere. Local people frequently give a few coins or notes, only too aware of how fragile an existence we all lead. They are a good guide as to whom it is appropriate to give to; the very old, the physically disabled. They never give to children and it can be quite amusing to have some scruffy urchin approach, try to sell you something and, when unsuccessful whisper in the tiniest, cutest voice imaginable "uno peso", as if they are afraid that should some adult overhear they'd get a slap.

Tags: border, crossing, on the road, palenque, river, travel tales


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