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No es mucho que pedir


Students receive a language class in Máximo Nivel, a spanish school in La Antigua Guatemala. Photo: Santiago Billy/Comvite
Students receive a language class in Máximo Nivel, a spanish school in La Antigua Guatemala. Photo: Santiago Billy/Comvite

“..and you don’t even need to know any Spanish!” is often one of the trademark selling points of an Antigua vacation. Menus are regularly printed in Spanish and English. It’s hard to get a job in hospitality here if you don’t speak at least a conversational level of English. Flocks of international tourists fill the hostels each year, and, almost invariably, a considerable portion of these tourists segues into becoming long-term residents. Many don’t really intend for that to happen; the town’s singular charm and unique opportunities seduce more than a few errant backpackers and other wingnuts wandering the Latin American gringo trail. Hell, it happened to me. While a veritable tome could be written on the nature of international relocation to Antigua, one of the more contentious points is the endemic unwillingness of many residents to speak Spanish.

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