"Chicken bus" is the name given by Guatemalans and English speakers alike to these colorful versions of American school buses that can take you from anywhere to anywhere else in Guatemala, as long as you can survive riding in a seat sized for the average 5th grader. The name comes from the fact that the roof racks can be loaded with anything, including livestock. Some chicken buses are, in fact, recycled school buses from the U.S., and you occasionally see one that hasn't been repainted and still bears the name of a U.S. school district. The drivers can be as exuberant as the color schemes; it's not unusual to be passed by a chicken bus on a blind curve, which may explain why invocations to saints for protection are a common adornment.
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