Costa Rica Service Trip 2018
Hola! This morning as our alarm clocks sounded, we were all ready for another day of hard, impacting work. Breakfast today was amazing, it consisted of varieties of fruit, eggs, rice, beans and ham. It was our favorite breakfast and we were able to spend time with our families, speaking Spanish. After eating and saying hasta luego, we made our journey to the coffee plantation. Once we got there, we all met and discussed our game plan to take the day on. Half of us were assigned to work on moving the gravel because we had already experienced a beautiful and challenging hike through the mountains of Cedral yesterday. Although we did the gravel moving before, it was still difficult, hard and time consuming work. After a while of moving the rocks from the pile we all quickly realized what an impact we had made in such little time. This little project of moving rocks will keep building onto other little projects to create a big impact on their production of coffee. In this case, a little bit of work can go a long way. They can make more coffee faster so they can make and sell more amounts of coffee. Selling more coffee to tourists will lead to more money for their community to eventually build it up more, which they are already starting to do by building a new church. Those who were not working with gravel, went on a hike in the morning. There are no words to describe the hike except for beautiful and fun. What an experience! Everyone came back tired yet felt rewarded and satisfied because they had just pushed themselves. This hike is now labeled as one of the highlights of our lives. The hike started out with the sun beating down on us and very steep uphill. It was like this for a while but we were motivated by Eric and some of our host brothers to keep going, they promised it would be worth the energy once we got to where we were going. We passed by waterfalls, and came to a pool of water with rocks and a log going across the pool that we would have to cross. We got pictures and had laughs that we couldn’t get anywhere in the US. Once we crossed that log, we had a choice to either go back down to the coffee plantation or we could hike up to the top to see a different, beautiful view of Cedral from above. We chose to say ‘you only live once’ and to keep heading to the top. We were so glad that we did this in the end. A few dogs even followed us to the top. As we made it back, we joined the other group and made an assembly line to help with the gravel.
Later our host families brought us nothing but delicious lunches packed with love and kindness. After lunch, we went back to our families’ homes for a couple of hours of downtime before we all went to the school’s field and played soccer there with the locals in Cedral. It was so great to again see the community come together to enjoy a common interest and the fact that we got to share that with them was really cool. The language barrier didn’t matter with this activity. We were all laughing because we knew that most of the time we were thinking the same thing. Their soccer skill is a prime example of natural talent and you can tell that they come down to the field to play soccer a lot. We were hungry after a long and divertido day of physical activities. All of our host mothers planned and organized a pasta dinner. There we learned to make pasta and see how they make sauce and boy was it delicious. Our host mothers were very thoughtful in making us something that they knew we would enjoy. A few mothers even went into town and got a certain type of cheese for us to eat. We appreciate these little gestures so much. David had our group do a confidence boosting activity where we write something nice about someone on a card and after dinner we got to go to our host homes, spend time with our families with games, and then read that card that was made for us. This was a recipe for only good thoughts while falling asleep for the fourth night.
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