Final Reflection started off as a very calm day however it was evident that there was a cloud of anxiety hovering among us glimpsers. As teens we had to do the thing that annoyed us most, talking about our feelings. This might not have been the case for each and every person, but for the more timid of the group , such as myself, it was going to be a dreadful day. The three hour program seminar began with the lack of enthusiasm that was perceived. We all sat silently, afraid, unsure and even ashamed of what we have grown to believe and have been keeping a secret. It was strange how silence was easily broken once a few volunteers went… it was almost as if we fed of off each other’s energy. After a few individuals shared their opinion it was evident that we have grown so closely intertwined that talking about our feelings weren’t going to be the worst thing we will do in our lives.
After our final reflection we had our last lunch at El Hostel de Castillo. At the nightly meeting before, we planned to thank the owners of the hostel for their hospitality. So we created a poster with our signatures and miniature messages that each of us wanted to tell the people at the hostel. Jocelyn and I presented the poster to the Dona Francis ( the lady who cooks all of our wonderful meals) and her family. Jocelyn was my translator, I think she did very well despite all of the idioms I used. We were all surprised the find out that one of the women who works at Castillo actually speaks fluent english. She thanked us and told us that were were one of the best groups that they have every had! Aren’t we special :). After our brief presentation, we went upstairs to gather our belongings, loaded them on the bus and took a two hour drive to Managua.
When we arrived in Managua we came to our new hostel for the next couple of hours. Many of the girls including myself were excited for bigger rooms with larger bed, hot water and air conditioning. Before we could settle into our rooms, we left our hostel in Managua and went to the boardwalk where we saw a miniature representation of the city. The boardwalk was lit by the very big colorful trees that in Nica culture represents life. I didn’t get a really good explanation of the meaning behind the trees ,but they were interesting and beautiful.
Our final meal in Nicaragua was at Pizza Hut. This was my favorite part of the entire day. Sitting like a family, the cold silence five minutes after our meals were served and then the stream of conversations after made it the most memorable part of the day for me. I remember pausing and just admiring how far we’ve come and how much like family we treat each other. All of the little pockets conversations here and there as well as the stare contests with the unbeatable Edgar.
Being a leader I learnt that emotions can and do get the best of people. Final Reflection was a very emotional day and although there was a set schedule and it was my job to carry it out, I have to be mindful of all the external factors that could conflict with the schedule or change the way people go about on a less emotionally intensive day. This makes me realise that as a leader I have to be adaptive and aware of my surroundings.