Part 1 – Catiana Cartwright
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
Awful way to start a blog post, I know, but there really were a lot of ups and downs today. For those avidly following our adventures, our schedule was pretty similar to yesterday’s: Wake up at 7:00, eat a nice (if not slightly skimpy) breakfast of fresh fruit, and head to the school of Santa Cruz, where we’re working on our Community Action Project. We went into it with spirits high and optimism even higher, fueled by the wise words of our Global Glimpse Leaders: “Work hard or die” from Tony, and “Forget about the past, and remedy the future” from Coach.
We definitely hit the ground running, as one group started scrubbing the brick floors with makeshift sponges (actually foam bedding that we salvaged from a furniture store), another began sketching the mural, and another pulled out the rollers and brushes and attacked the Enormous Wall.
It was slow going at first, but after a highly exciting meal of “burgers” and fries (it was sort of like a sausage patty and a slice of bologna on a hamburger bun with pinkish mayo), we were able to pull together and finish the whole first wall and the bottom half of the second, and great progress was made on the mural as well.
Tensions ran high and rain did fall, but highlights of the day include:
-Chelis spilling a bucket of non-removable paint and immediately saying, “That was water, right?”
-Kids from the school coming over to help us scrub the floor, and taking off their skirts so that they wouldn’t get dirty
-Making fun of our leaders Heyssel and Margarita, who committed to the cause with us
-And of course, the wall falling apart as we painted it. That was great and not at all frustrating.
After a solid block of hard work, we were ready to jump into a Jacuzzi and have tropical-type drinks served to us. But of course, it’s not that kind of trip. So at about 3:30 we headed back to the hostel and worked on our lesson plans for English tutoring, which is at 6:00 every night. Some Glimpsers were able to sneak in a quick trip to the ice cream shop before dinner, which consisted of the foods we’ve learned to love since being here gallo pinto, chorizo, and fried plantains.
Tutoring went well for everybody I think, and on the way back to the hostel we got a special treat: a 15-minute stop at the grocery store! Yes, parents, you’re reading that right, all it takes to make us happy is a couple of minutes among the air-conditioned aisles of snack foods and fresh produce. We’re a new brand of teenagers.
We ended the day with our nightly meeting and the passing of the torch, which went to Chantal! She’ll be handling the third and final day of the CAP. We’re in the home stretch now, and can’t wait to see the smiling faces and wreaths of flowers and fresh In-n-Out that will be waiting for us at SFO! Parents, make sure you deliver. Thanks for reading, see you in a few!
Part 2 – Griselda Orochena
Today I woke up at 5:15 am to start my morning with a run. I find myself running to not only train for cross country but to prepare myself for the days’ events. I never thought I would be running in a foreign country with a Jamaican dude (sorry coach). Nicaragua is beautiful, it is my family’s home country. I’ve been here before with my mom but that was seven years ago. Never did I once think my next visit would be to help and learn about my prideful culture. I also never thought I would be living with a bunch of crazy animals that I now love so much and consider my family in just a matter of two weeks. The days have been hectic and today was no exception.
As leader of the day I had the task of waking everyone up by 7:00 AM. An hour later E1C was rushing to eat breakfast. A small group of us (Javier, Chelis, Catiana, & Coach), rushed to the hardware store to buy more supplies for our CAP Project. We raced back to the hostel with multiple supplies to make it on time for our departing bus. It’s crazy because before I knew it I was scrubbing floors (brick floors) and painting walls. I dare anyone to question if I’m Nicaraguan after scrubbing these floors. The Griselda before Global Glimpse would have complained about getting down and dirty to scrub floors, but as the leader of the day I didn’t have that luxury. How could I complain? Javier, Justene, and Sydnee were just a few of my new family who were also working their tails off. I respect that because we all want to get the job done. We were committed to this project and some leaders even work through lunch. Even when It started to rain we still worked till the end.
Clean-up was hard because collectively we were tired. This fast pace can have you forget about the little things. Today I heard a student express how much she loved the wall because it was her favorite color. I also witnessed boys playing soccer using the lines we put down on day 1 of CAP. I felt that we impacted their lives instantly with something that seems small to us but huge to them.
Thank god for Catianna the co leader of the day because she was cool and not controlling at all. Did I mention the fast pace? Back at the hostel at 4PM, shower, dinner at 5:00 PM & out the door for tutoring at 5:45PM. I don’t know how I ended up at La Colonia supermarket (after English tutoring) but I’m thankful for the snacks. My sugar coma is kicking in so its time to say goodnight dudes. I am officially a Nicaraguan!!!
Your obedient servants,
Catiana Cartwright and Griselda Orochena