Hello Everyone! My name is Aditi Gaur, and I was the leader del dia today, which was possibly the most fun day we have had so far! I’ve had such an incredible experience leading the group today, and I hope you can catch a glimpse of the fun we’ve had through this post!

We had a relatively early start today, waking up at 6 AM and embarking on a three hour bus ride to the Masaya Volcano! This was an active volcano, which was very evident by the amount of smoke rising out of it. The group and I thought the view of the volcano was absolutely breathtaking, and we took a lot of pictures so that we could brag about it later! Interestingly enough, the volcano was termed as the ‘gate of hell’ by a priest who also placed a cross at the top of it to mark it. All of us ‘breathed in the fumes’ as we stood over the picaresque scene.

After that unforgettable experience, we boarded the bus once more to head to Catarina, a small but bountiful market with many opportunities for us to buy our friends and families nice souvenirs! After making lots of commendable purchases and practicing a lot of our bargaining skills, we headed over to a nearby restaurant for lunch. The food was delicious, as always, with the starring dish being the fried plantains. Everyone loved those with a fervor!

And now was probably the most enjoyable experience of the day: swimming in the Masaya Lagoon. Even at first glance, one can see this lagoon has the most beautiful blue-green water, which glimmers like a jewel under the sunlight. Surrounding the lagoon is an inspiring scene of hills rising out of the water and forming a cocoon of greenery as one swims. For the group and I, it was absolutely perfect, minus one little detail. None of us could enter the water without using a life jacket. This came as a surprise to several, and disappointed would be an understatement when describing our emotions upon learning the news. However, the group and I worked past our disappointment to discover that although we could no longer dive or do graceful flips in the water, we could now cruise and float in the water effortlessly. We were also able to kayak and use inflatable tubes in the water, which was enjoyable for all of us in one shape or form. Whether we were being tipped over by our friends while we were in the kayaks, or being the ones tipping others over, we were all laughing and bonding over the experience. When it came time to depart, no one wanted to leave. However, the thought of having pizza for dinner was motivation enough for everyone to get on the bus.

The three hour bus ride back to the hostel was very memorable for the group, as we all brought out our inner pop stars singing along to our favorite tunes. Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran were just some artists that we sang along with, and personally, I thought we all were much better singers. There was a moment of surprise on the bus when Emigdiya, who was sitting in the seat in front of me, pointed out the stars in the night sky to us. The stars on this particular night were so much more visible than any of us had seen in the states before. They were like gleaming jewels scattered into disorganized patterns in the dark night sky. All of us had an expression of pure wonder on our faces when we caught our first sight of the stars. Once our bus ride ended and we reached the hostel, we had a pleasant surprise waiting for us: pizza. Pepperoni, cheese, and vegetable slices of pizza were in everyone’s hands as we dined together in the lounge area of the hostel. It was the most casual, yet what I believe to be the most intimate meal we have had together. And now, I am here, sitting in the lounge area of the hostel and writing this post as I hope to take you all on our journey today with us through this blog.

Today was a day filled with a lot of emotions and feelings for all of us. I personally went through a moment of shock when I finally realized it was the 16th day of our trip. The realization that we were so close to the end encouraged me to keep my energy to the max all day and interact with as many of my family members as I could. I owe a huge shout out to Teddy, Coco, Julia, Austin, and Victor for sharing in my enthusiasm for our second and last fun day and making me laugh at least twenty times today, and of course my entire global glimpse family for making everyday here feel more comfortable than I thought it could possibly be. I heard several of my family members echo my sentiments today, that they couldn’t believe we were so close to the end of our trip. Hearing this sentiment repeated multiple times today, I have come to realize something I will carry with me through all of my journeys henceforth. Every journey is ephemeral, but the memories, relationships, and knowledge that we gain out of it are everlasting. Although my family and I will return to our homes in the next two days, we have formed relationships and created memories with each other that we will never be able to forget.

Thank you to all the parents and family that continue to read our daily blogs and keep up with our journey! I hope you all enjoyed embarking on our fun day with us through this post!

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