Health and Safety Concerns in Guatemala


Guatemala Image:

Chicago education consultant, lawyer and entrepreneur John Heintz is co-founder and senior legal consultant of Lydian, Inc. ,a partner with Second Rail. Formerly the chief legal officer of Niles Township High School District 219, he holds a JD from Chicago’s John Marshall Law School and an advanced LLM in public international law from Leiden University in the Netherlands. A world traveler, John Heintz has been to many countries, including Latin American countries Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico and extensive time in Europe. John Heintz consulting work with a higher education start up in Spain has put to work his Spanish skills without the Latin American twist.

The Central American country found just below Mexico, Guatemala is a popular tourist destination for eco-travelers, outdoor enthusiasts, and history buffs curious about Mayan culture. The country is extremely inexpensive, making it a highly affordable vacation destination, though health and safety are central concerns for visitors.

Prior to visiting Guatemala, travelers are advised by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to get the following vaccines: influenza, chicken pox, hepatitis A and B, tetanus-diphtheria, and typhoid, as well as measles, mumps, and rubella. Some may want to get vaccinated for yellow fever and rabies, and malaria pills are often recommended.

While in the country, visitors should not drink tap water unless it has been boiled, filtered, or disinfected. Be sure that ice cubes have also been treated.

As far as personal safety goes, travelers should not journey alone through rural areas. The U.S. Department of State warns travelers against the Guatemala-Mexico border and the northwestern corner of Peten. Intercity buses are also prone to robbery.


Olduvai campsite

John introduces Peg, Gwenn and Bob to the Olduvai permanent campsite between Ngorongoro and the Serengeti. The site is run by Masai.

Hot New Chicago Restaurants


Basque Spain
Basque Spain

The former assistant superintendent of operations and chief legal officer for Niles Township High School District 219 in Chicago, Illinois, John Heintz currently serves as senior legal consultant for Lydian, Inc., which he helped establish in June 2013 as part of the Second Rail network of consultants. John Heintz is heading academics and operations for a higher education and semi-professional athletic start up in the Basque region of Spain. In his free time, John Heintz enjoys exploring new restaurants in Chicagoland and the Basque region, which has one of the highest densities of Michelin rated restaurants in the world.

Zaldiarán is a Michelin rated resturant in Vitoria, Spain, where the experience costs less than 70 euros including drinks. The setting is a carefully constructed dining area coupling privacy and community. The melting chocolate globe is the coup de grace of any meal.

PerretxiCo is another Vitoria restaurant that John Heintz frequents as a location with both original Basque region inspired bar snacks as well as a full sit down menu and top line service.

Like any urban setting, Chicago offers plenty of options for those looking to eat out, and with new restaurants opening regularly, it’s hard to run out of choices. Here are some of the hottest new restaurants in Chicago right now, according to Chicago Magazine:

1. The Blanchard. This Lincoln Park establishment tops the list with its straightforward approach to classic French cuisine. Chicago Magazine especially admires the restaurant’s subtle takes on classic dishes. For example, the steak frites include steak bone marrow, and the crust-seared foie gras is paired with candied lavender. The restaurant also offers amazing desserts prepared by pastry chef Marjorie Easley.

2. Arbor. Found in Logan Square, Arbor is a bit harder to get into, as reservations are granted somewhat randomly, and each meal is customized to the diner. Dishes are original–some might call them weird–with tastes that linger, such as the fatty white tuna tacos with lotus roots, avocado puree, and corn gravel encased in radish slices.

3. Monteverde. A West Loop restaurant, Monteverde is dedicated to pasta, which it makes in-house. Favorite dishes include arrabbiata and plump egg yolk ravioli stuffed with ricotta and kale. A popular place for fans of the Bulls and Blackhawks, the restaurant is always hopping.