We are sorry for the delay, but this post is from Tuesday, July 21.

Today we woke up at 7 am, it was CAP day. We knew it was going to be hard, and it was, though not in all the ways we expected. We first got to the basketball courts and saw that the court didn’t have lines painted on it, even though they were supposed to. As soon as we saw this, we got down to work. The committees separated and started painting the court lines and separating the materials we would need. When we organized everything, we put up the new hoop for the basket, which was a challenge because of  our small ladder. Once we finished with that, we started painting the rest of the court. The court consisted of three different colors which were teal, red, and blue. As we were about to start painting the blue section with the second can of paint, we realized that we had bought the wrong color. Instead of the light sky blue we were expecting, the paint was a dark, almost purple-blue. The purple-blue color was very difficult to paint with because it was an oil based paint, which made it thicker and harder to remove from clothing and from our hands. Once we finished with the blue we painted the sides of the free throw line teal, and the top of the key light red. After we finished the key, we moved on to the area outside the three point line and painted it red as well.

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Once the court was painted we moved on to painting the mural across from the basket. Early on the art committee decided that a tree design would be the best way to symbolize the way the community was rooted in love, and how that love brought everyone together. Once the mural was completed we began preparing for the event, unstacked chairs, and helped assemble the tent which the community would sit under. We had speakers from El Chorro (the community we helped), including one of the more inspiring speakers, Carlos, who led the community. We also had members from our delegation describe their experiences working together, and how they would continue to sustain the basketball court, and keep it in good condition for years to come. During the event, we provided food and drinks for the community, while others played basketball on the newly minted court. Looking back on our work we were surprised and proud of how professional it looked, as well as how much the community enjoyed playing on it.

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Shortly after the event, we returned to the hotel and had self-reflection about how we thought the CAP went and strengths and weaknesses we had identified. We also talked about how rewarding it felt to help a community in need and to see how happy they were with what we had provided. It also made us think of other ways we could help our own communities. After self-reflection, we had dinner and our last nightly meeting, which was very emotional;  it made us realize how close we had become, and the fact that we may never see each other again. The meeting ended with Nathan becoming the new leader of the day, and showcasing his two impressive talents: his pitching arm and a singing medley he had written for the group with handwritten notes for each person. Continuing the nightly meeting, everyone gathered outside and talked about first impressions we had of each other before going to bed.

Being El Lider Del Dia was a very unique experience. Organizing and directing your peers is hardly ever easy, but with our group it was very easy. We learned that to be a leader you have to keep track of everything and make sure everyone is doing what they are supposed to. After being El Lider Del Dia we learned that when it comes to making sure a group is okay and on task, we sometimes had to be annoying in order to get the job done.