Make Friends with the world-America 和世界做朋友-美洲篇

2018年10月29日至30日 New York, US 美國紐約
(有帶團但忘了和來自中國東北的導遊照相,去了帝國大廈和Brooklyn看夜景,導遊非常專業,我只需要幫一位來自新加坡但不會華語的旅客中翻英口譯。) 所以不算能和導遊深入地交流。

Didn’t really have a chance to personally connect with the guide during our outing in New York as she spoke Chinese and all I had to do was interpreting for one passenger who came from Singapore/ or Malaysia who does not understand Chinese.

2018年11月3日至4日 Havana, Cuba 古巴 哈瓦那

With Sara, our Cuban guide on the left and a passenger from China from the right

There we did the tour “Following the footprint of Hemingway” together. We visited the hotel he stayed, his favorite bar and restaurant, and of course his mansion.

Sara was a passionate guide always with a big smile. She was willing to share all she knows and was very helpful. Some passengers even asked sensitive questions like how much money do you pay for rent, how you afford your living in the Communist country, etc. but she answered them all… I felt bad for her.

Anyway, so how did they acquire their housing? It was that her husband works for a construction company so the family gets discount to buy the place which her husband has constructed. They paid monthly until they finally pay off the whole amount. It’s like a loan however without a bank in between but they can’t own the land but they have the right to use the apartment similar to China.

Do you know that the dance Salsa and Rumba are both from Cuba?
“Cuban music also contributed to the emergence of Latin dance styles in the United States, namely rhumba (ballroom rumba) and salsa”

And the song Guantanamera was also from Cuba. The lyrics looks Spanish but it’s actually Cuban. Because chorus “Guantanamera, guajira guantanamera” meaning a pleasant girl from outside of Guantanamo province. First Guantánamo is the easternmost province of Cuba. The female version of the word makes Guantanamera. Then guajira sounds like war hero in English and yes, it was because as a reward, those war heroes were given free pieces of lands outside of town after the war. So because of that, this word was later used to describe everything that’s outside of town. And we sang the song together with the guests on the bus before arriving the fishing village which inspired Hemingway to write his master piece “Old man and the sea”.

So how much does a Cuban love to dance? Sara told me when her husband hears some nice music playing on TV, he would go to her and maybe she’s cooking in the kitchen or busy with some stuff at that time. But they would stop everything at hand and just enjoy dancing together. How romantic! 🥰

Did you know the world’s popular cocktail Daiquiri and Mojito were invented there in Hemingway’s favorite bar and restaurant and that they were made according to Hemingway’s favorite flavor combinations?

我們在古巴.哈瓦那一起跟隨海明威的腳印,拜訪他曾居住的酒店、常去的酒吧和他的故居。 我們的導遊充滿了熱情,一直能看見都是大大的微笑,有問必答。當有客人問他們房租多少錢,在共產國家怎麼買房子等問題…她居然也回答了…我其實對她覺得不好意思。


小知識1:你知道莎莎舞和倫巴都是源自於古巴音樂? Guantanamera「關他啦沒啦」這首有名的民謠就是來自古巴? 而歌詞Guantanamera, guajira guantanamera 這看起來是西班牙文但純屬古巴用語,因為詞意為 那位住在 Guantánamo郊外的女孩。 Guantánamo是古巴最東邊的一個省,把地名女性化, 而guajira聽起來像英文的war hero,導遊說就是因為以前的戰爭英雄們在戰後會得到城外的一塊土地做為達謝,後來意思延伸為城外的…。 導遊和我們解釋歌詞之後和我們同唱,然後巴士就帶我們到達了 一個漁村 ,這是讓海明威寫下他的巨作『老人與海』的重要靈感來源。


小知識2:你知道世界聞名的雞尾酒 DaiquiriMojito都是當地的餐廳和酒吧依海明威喜好的口味所調出來的 ?


2018年11月8日至9日 Cristobal, Panama 巴拿馬 克里斯托瓦爾

The the most highly rated tour guide on the trip, Jorge.

A very flexible guide. To make up for the lost time in traffic, he adjusted the itinerary to gain time yet still manage please the guests with extra photo stops.

There was an episode in the old town. There were a lot of people who had gone missing as it was dark and those streets were so winding that we had to take turns after turns. We lost half of the group somewhere! But the guide quickly went looking for people while I stayed put with the rest of the guests. Although having to wait we kept ourselves busy and entertained with a Q&A session about my personal life. Haha…😅

It all happened because just a couple of blocks away, one of our senior guests stopped walking because he believed that he lost the sight of the people who were before him. So people are like a cluster of fish, one stopped, all stopped. One staff was among them and as she didn’t know what else to do, she decided to have the whole group stand there and wait for help.

In the end, both groups reunited and expressed the gratitude for the guide. Even one of the toughest guests who had complained several times on other trips, gave him a thumb up and asked to take a photo with him. He saved the day…

On a personal note, Jorge and I talked about the life on Peace Boat and maybe he would be the next person to apply to teach English/ Spanish in the GET program on Peace boat. We’ll see…


当中有一个插曲,在老城回巴士路上,忽然有一半人失踪,因为我们走过了许多蜿延的 暗暗的小路,而我和导游走在前方。他立马决定去找不见的伙伴们,并要我待在原地等候。虽然我们不得不等待,但过程也挺有趣的,因为客人们对我的个人生活很感兴趣,一直问个不停。


最后,两个团体重新团聚,并对导游表示感谢。即便是一位多次在其他旅行中表示不满的客人,也给他竖起大拇指并要求和导游合影留念, 他是我们那次出游的英雄啊…

2018年11月13日至16日 Callao, Peru 秘魯卡亞俄

With our guide, Nancy. Although getting up at 3 am, she was full of positive energy. She runs own her travel agency with a daughter and a son.

Our tour was to see Nasca line. All people were sleeping on the bus as this tour started at 4:45 am and we chatted all the way there. We drove by Pisco from Callao to take the little plane. Although I was amazed flying over the wonders in Peru, I could not enjoy a single bit after taking off. I got very sick from the motion disease and the cold air-conditioning. I think it was also due to fact of getting up too early and with a small breakfast so I must have had low blood sugar and blood pressure or something. Plus I was sitting in the back with the seatbelt loosely attached while I had nowhere to hold on to. I remember a guest asked me if I was alright, I used last bit of my energy to keep my eyes closed and just focus on my breathing. I was trying so hard not to throw up. The worst thing was even though there were bags to vomit behind each seat, I could not reach it because the emergency seat was further away to the back. But luckily I kept a plastic bag in my backpack and I had it stand by and used it to cover my legs. (OMG, was so cold!!!)

It was freaking awful having constantly cold air blowing on my cold sweat, with a spinning head and a turning stomach…I could not interpret for a while but fortunately I recovered gradually after lunch.

On the way back to the boat, we listened to Peruvian music while people were sleeping. We played some Latin music with the phone to wake up passengers for dinner. And last but not least, we had a Peruvian BBQ buffet. Yum!!! Our guide even asked the restaurant to play some local music just for us!!! With Pisco Sour, people started to dance a little. 😂 Although having a disaster earlier that day, we had a great night!



我对于飞越秘鲁的奇观感到惊奇不已,但起飞后我根本无法享受。晕机加上冷气太强真的很难受。我觉得这可能也是因为早上太早起和早餐不够,有低血糖和低血压的現象。加上我坐在后面,紧急逃生的座椅安全带很松,晃得很厉害,却无把手可抓。我记得一位客人问我还好吗,我只能摇头,闭着眼睛,因为我非常努力地控制自己不要呕吐。好气又好笑的是,即使每个座位后面都有一个呕吐袋或拿来呼气让呼吸稳定,但我也因为坐在后面太远,而根本捞不到前座后方的口袋 ,有着看得到却摸不到的失落和无奈。更惨的是,出风口就在我的头上,冷风直直吹着我的冷汗,旋转的头和一个翻騰的肚子,真是太可怕了…另一个工作人员还发生头发麻的现象,但还好我们在午饭后终于康复了。

在回船的路上,尽管很多人在车上睡觉我们还是给大家放了秘鲁当地的音乐。我们用手机放了一些拉丁音乐来叫醒乘客共进晚餐,那天吃的是秘鲁烧烤自助餐。我们的导游还要求餐厅为我们播放一些本地音乐!随着Pisco Sour调酒,人们开始舞动了一下。虽然那天多灾多难,还算是有个美好的一晚!

2018年11月26日 Manzanillo, Mexico 曼薩尼約,墨西哥

With our Mexican guide Francisco-Pacho

The guide was professional and helpful! He stayed near all the time even when there was nothing for him to do. I played Mexican music Cucalacha and La bamba with my smartphone and we sang together. He told me once he was working in the U.S. and he went to a bar with friends. Local people asked them to play some Mexican music. So he and his friends formed a band spontaneously and he was the vocal. 🧑‍🎤

這個導遊很專業而且幫我們滿多忙的! 即使無事可做,他一直都呆在附近。 我用智能手機播放墨西哥音樂Cucalacha和La bamba,我們一起唱歌。 他和我說他在美國工作後,和朋友一起去了一家酒吧。 當地人看他們是墨西哥人,感覺都很會唱歌,就要求他們表演。 因此,他和他的朋友隨興組成了一支樂隊,他是主唱。🧑‍🎤

Do you know Pointsettia or Nochebuena (聖誕紅 ) was from Mexico? The first ambassador, Joel Roberts Poinsett, from the U.S. brought back the flower and named it in English after himself. Poinsettia Day – History
您知道Pointsettia或Nochebuena(聖誕紅)來自墨西哥嗎? 美國的第一任大使喬爾·羅伯茨·龐塞特(Joel Roberts Poinsett)把這棵植物帶回了美國,並以他名字命名。

2018年12月5日至6日 Hawaii, US 美國檀香山


I forgot to take pictures with Simon, a Korean tour guide plus driver. But I was very happy that day because I had my own microphone and a double seat, what a luxury for an interpreter. So I don’t have to be afraid that the guide would snatch my microphone from time to time or spit at me! He is the only tour guide plus driver, and he played trivial questions with us. So this time I was not just an interpreter, I was also hosting a show. Slowly I discover your own style. Some interpreters are just doing translations, and don’t necessarily care whether the audience understands it or feel entertained. And I prefer to do things interactively. Sometimes when I take time to search for words or that I can’t respond quickly, it might be more fun to just let the guests guess what I’m describing.

夏威夷真的很美,有山有水,隨便橋下就有熱帶魚 。大家瘋狂拍照,但站在車上危險,和大家說大家可以多用眼睛看,眨眼睛的快門, 儲存在腦部的記憶體。在那裡有免費咖啡和夏威夷豆讓你試吃到飽,真的是美式的招待。
Hawaii is got it all, with really beautiful mountains and oceans. Tropical fish right under the bridge. Everyone is taking pictures like crazy, but standing in the car while it’s moving is dangerous. I told everyone that you can just use your eyes to see, blink like the shutter with your eyes, and store it in the memory of your brain 😅. There are free coffee and macadamia nuts for you to try “all-you-can-eat” style. It is really American hospitality, living in abundance!
There are also brothers and sisters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As I grew up in that church, some of my knowledge just came in handy during my interpretation. If I have a chance, I will definitely go back and visit.

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