GUATEMALA CITY — There may be no place in the world more familiar to me than where I am now, here, back in Central America. At this point I have lived abroad longer than in my hometown (at least in recent years) and anyway, my hometown isn’t my hometown.
A long time ago I wrote a story, which I will reprint here soon, called, “The Long Central American Goodbye.” The title recalled a specific memory but in a broader sense how I was unable to say goodbye, how each trip to the region led to the next trip, each of them both expanding my explorations and revisiting places I had been before, getting to know them in a deeper, more complete way. My experiences in Central America, centered around my work as a reporter and documentary photographer, led me directly to Sweden and Ukraine and in ways I consider those side journeys along the greater arc of my time in Central America. As I write this I will clarify that by Central America I mean the three countries, so much in the news lately, referred to as “The Northern Triangle,”Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador. I hope to visit the other countries that make up the region: Belize, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Panama but for the moment I am living in Guatemala and, with both Covid and work, more extensive travel is somewhere out in the future.