Today started a little late, as I didn’t realize that a wake-up call literally meant me going around to the different houses and knocking on the doors to wake everyone up. We had a delicious breakfast of pancakes, eggs, fruit, and cereal.

Our first excursion was to the downtown area of Jarabacoa to visit the fire station to see what life is like for firefighters in Jarabacoa. We were warmly welcomed by everyone at the fire station and got a demonstration on how fast a firefighter has to get his gear on when there is an emergency. We also got to see the firefighters go down the pole on the way down to the fire trucks.

Next, we walked through the town and got ice cream at a local shop. The ice cream was so good! I am sure we’ll be back in the future.

After lunch back at the hotel, we went to Salto Baiguate to see the natural beauty of the countryside, passing rice and banana farms and eventually arriving at an amazing waterfall. It was so much fun getting to dip our feet in the water and experience some of the natural beauty the Dominican Republic has to offer.

We then returned to the hotel and had free time to play games, get in the pool, and make phone calls home. During the nightly meeting tonight, the torch was passed to Katherine and Nomar, who will lead the group through the activities tomorrow.

I’m very encouraged by the comradery already flourishing among the group. It feels like everyone is bonding so well just within these first two days.