James, put an introduction here.

While my friend Andy would be quick to point out that I am not a travel writer, my intent is simply to call attention to a few features of the Lake Atitlan area.

Recently much attention has been focused on the lake because a large village has been discovered 30 meters underwater. It is estimated to be 2000 years old and is yielding beautiful artifacts which can be seen in a special museum in Hotel Don Rodrigues.

Among the hotel offerings around the lake, two come to mind. The beautiful Posada de Santiago whose infamous owner, David, is the author of The Man Who Stole 30, 000 Bibles. Also not to be missed is the Iguana Perdida, in Santa Cruz, famous for its Saturday night music fest, accompanied by scandalous dress and behavior, inspired by the twisted mind of its owner, also named David...hmmm. Ask about hi altitude scuba certification.

The more established health practitioners around the lake shore represent a variety of offerings: Jennifer Martin offers massages of various styles, as well as Reiki certification Kirsten Mynster is very well known for her energy work Nadia is the owner/director of Flower House in San Marcos, which offers a variety of treatments and classes in Shiatsu, Teishin, Gem Healing, and Teishin Facials Carmen Nally and her mother Anastasia Pickett offer massage and deep tissue in a convenient location on Santander, the main street of Panajachel Daniela Abadi is a medically trained midwife, who for many years has attended births and trained midwives in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Central America. She offers mass- age, acupuncture sessions, and gynecology consultations. With other internationally recognized midwives she is opening a 3 year school for professional midwives in 2013

There are many types of foods available in stores and restaurants. Due to the frequency of infection with the protozoans Giardia and Amoeba it is important to eat where good food disinfecting practices are followed. My personal favorite is The Deli, with 2 locations. They serve tofu and tempeh, soy chai, and have their own bakery. Most importantly, I have eaten thousands of meals (including salads) and due to their strict attention to disinfecting have never been sick. Around the lake there are various 'hospitalitos' which provide inexpensive healthcare and are often staffed with western trained doctors. Should you find yourself becoming bored with being massaged and fed, there are a number of bookstores with new and used books in a variety of languages. Also at Inguat one can buy tickets on a boat which tours lakeside villages, stopping an hour in each one. Two necessary cultural experiences are the Chi Chi market on Thursdays and the unique Maximon (pronounced Mashimon).

My own work here at the lake includes various styles of acupuncture as well as qigong, and teishin classes.

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