San Marcos Xecul is a little pueblo near Xela that took about 45 minutes to get to by bike, and that was with very, very slow riders. It´s nestled in the foothills of a small mountain that overlooks a beautiful expanse of farmland and scattered homes. Its most striking sight is its garishly painted church which seems to be the draw for people like me to make this trip. It was all part of a trip organized by the language school this past Saturday morning. It´s the first time I´ve really gotten out of the city to see a less developed pueblo. Needless to say, eight westerners with mountain bikes, one pant leg rolled up, and wearing bike helmets is an unusual - although not unheard of - site here. [Photos: 1 2 3 4 5 6 ]. The rest of the weekend I spent with a small group of new friends from Australia, England, and the Netherlands - plus a rotating bunch of extras from the U.S. One Aussie in particular, James, has been with me for most of my free time here. He´s a great guy - a 24 year-old soon-to-be lawyer - who has already been on the road for nearly three months on his way from Mexico City to Ecuador. We´ve been studying Spanish, watching films, eating, drinking, talking politics, and meeting people together...and having a great time doing it. Today is Monday and it´s time to get back to work. Practica, practica, practica!