At the end of my training tour (when I shadowed our best tour leader for three weeks) I had to get the 3am night bus from Rio Dulce to Guatemala to catch my flight back up to Mexico. We got the boat at 2am with our security guard, who only escorted me 200m to the bus station, but as this is Guatemala, he was still fairly necessary. Due to the high rate of head-on collisions on Guatemalan roads I had been advised to sit as far back as possible to ‘give me a chance’ – but I ended up getting seat number 4. Oh well.
It was grand in the end, with only the one accident on the way. Ironically we had seen an overturned truck just earlier that day and our van only narrowly passed though the gap left on the side. We could have been stuck for ages otherwise. There were a dozen locals crowded around the truck. Their blasé attitude to the wreckage in front of them conveyed the sense that this was a regular occurence on these roads. The daily life in Guatemala.