“The world in which you are born is just one model of reality. Other cultures are not failed attempts at being.” – Anonymous

Greetings from Constanza!

Today we started off the day with waking up at 8:00am and by 8:30 we had some delicious scrambled eggs and toast with a FANTASTIC fruit smoothie. After breakfast, at 9:15, we had mental warm up engaging in a wonderful conversation discussing dominican music, bachata and meregue. For those of who dont know, Dominican music is rooted in African and Spaniard culture. We also discussed the hand-making of Carnaval masks. Students then took a a nice stroll down the road to our program manager’s home. Alyssa, graciously allowed us to use her gazebo to meet with a professional/award winning mask maker, Dario Victoriano a.k.a “El Gato” (because of his blue eyes). Students then were taught how to mold Carnaval masks using clay and water. He described step-by-step on how to shape and use the materials to create a Carnaval mask. After about two hours of solid work, students left their unfinished masterpieces to be prepped for the papier mâché (French spelling) and paint.

After that activity, we headed back to Dilenia’s for some delicious lunch. On the menu today we had yellow rice and corn, pasta salad and some scrumptious baked chicken with an tasty tangy sauce. After lunch we participated in a series of bonding activities with GG Ambassadors, GG Leaders and Program Coordinators.  Despite not being able to head to the original location (the park), students and GG staff were still able to make the best of our time. Later in the day we took a walk to the dance studio where we learned bachata and meregue steps with professional dance teacher, Paul Rosado. Students had an incredible time dancing all together, bonding with one another and learning from Paul. Many students were also surprised to hear that bachata/merengue became more popular during the 80s and 90s when those generations of artists took the mostly country music and made it national and mainstream. After all the laughs and dance moves we learned with him, we headed back to Dilenia’s for our program seminar about English Tutoring. Students created a lesson plan to prepare for the first day of English tutoring tomorrow. Afterwards, students got to freshen up before dinner and prepare for the night ahead of them. After some downtime, we had a dinner consisting of mashed potatoes, fried cheese, and vegetables.

When dinner was finished, we then had our nightly meeting, where as leaders of the day myself and Luna gave a brief summary of our day with students. We discussed roses (positive highlights) and thorns (things that could have gone better) for the day, we gave the glimpsers a plus (something that was done well by students) and a wish (something that needs improvement), and we passed the torch to Brandon and Angie. Brandon, a high school wrestler, displayed his sheer strength by doing push ups and eventually doing push ups with Angie on his back. Students were very impressed and the torch was passed to them.

Please enjoy the blog and pictures. Don’t forget to leave a comment below, it is really nice for the students to hear their loved ones and friends dropped them a comment.

Love, Global Glimpser Amber Holland and GG Leader Jorge Luna