I know that Erika and I have been writing all the blogs but I promise tomorrow we will begin with our first student El Lider Del Dia presenting the blog. I was the ELDD for today so I get the privilege to write one more blog. We are settling into our daily routine rather quickly. For the most part we get up at 7:00am, have breakfast, do an “energizer”, have an academic or program seminar, go on a field trip, return to the hostel for lunch at noon, students get a little free time while the leadership committee meets, have another seminar, go on another field trip, return to the hostel for dinner at 6:00pm, follow up with our nightly meeting to recap the day and write a reflection, enjoy some free time, then lights out at 10:30pm. Our in country leaders, Margarita and Heyssel, have done an incredible job of organizing all of our field trips, guest speakers, activities, accommodations, and meals. Our meals are prepared at our hostel and no one has left the table hungry! Muy muy delicioso!!
Today was a little more special for our “familia”. We had a special wake up call for one of our students, Haptish, who was celebrating his 18th birthday. Nothing says good morning like 20 people singing Happy Birthday to you through your window! After our academic seminar on “Cultura”, we returned to the Casa de Cultura to make cards from corn husk. This was a fun project and enjoyed by all. Our afternoon field trip took us on an hour drive outside of Esteli to visit a rock sculptor. The countryside of Nicaragua is certainly beautiful. Our challenge for the trip was getting to Don Alberto’s carving site. He creates his art on the natural stone in a valley which was about 1/2 mile down an extremely muddy and slippery trail. After several “slips”, and with thickly caked on muddy shoes we made it to the bottom where an incredible display of rock carving was waiting. Yes, there were individual rocks meticulously carved with scenes rivaling any museum piece but the masterpiece is a rock wall that he had completely carved. His art displays images from indigenous times, folklore, history, and contemporary. Awe inspiring just doesn’t do his work justice. Of course what comes down must go up when you do a roundtrip hike so we again made the slip and slide journey uphill but this time with a light rain. You would think that this may have ruined the attitude of the group but they welcomed the rain with joy and laughed with each slippery step back to the top.
We are now wrapping up the night. Reflections have been written and birthday cake has been enjoyed. I feel an early night coming on for many after our exhausting day! Thanks for your replies to our earlier posts. The kids are enjoying them. Buenos noches!!