For our second and last fun day of the trip we went to Saltos de Jima to visit a waterfall (monumento natural). Today, we had a lot of hold-ups when it came to the schedule. We left about an hour late due to an impromptu meeting that was necessary for the well being of a student and a few Glimpsers were unprepared. Despite the one hour delay, I was surprised with the level of patience that the Glimpsers showed. Usually, when teenagers are this deep into an 18-day trip in a foreign country and at risk of drowning in their own sweat almost every day, they tend to get snappy. However, everyone was really enjoying their time at the waterfall and the Glimpsers made sure to include everyone into the fun. It is hard not to feel amazing when you are under a gorgeous waterfall and surrounded by a thick, green rainforest. The park rangers were very wise and definitely had a plethora of experience with the wildlife. They informed us that a few families were allowed to live within the protected area because they were already living there before the area was established in 2009. After we returned from Saltos de Jima, we had the most delicious meal from our beloved cook, Licelot.

At 2:00 PM, we got into our CAP (Community Action Project) Committees and started planning for the CAP Panel where we would discuss the project with the community. I was in the Budget Committee and we went around to all the Glimpsers and asked how much money they had donated to the project since that data was not readily available. After we collected that information, we calculated the exchange from U.S. dollars to Dominican pesos. We also created a list of materials so that we would have an idea of what we would be spending our money on. From 4:00 to 5:00 PM, we prepared for our English Tutoring classes (5:00 to 7:00). We shared ideas between classes of the same levels and thought of activities for the students. In my class, we had many students of varying ages and English language levels that learned at different paces so we encouraged the students that were excelling to assist the newer and older students.

As El Lider Del Dia, I felt that I had a lot of room to grow. I felt at times unorganized and I knew that Glimpsers were not looking up to me like they did for some of the other more noteworthy Liders Del Dia. I did, however, enjoy being in charge of thanking people and making sure that everyone was on-time. As a person, I felt like I should have been more forward thinking and planning ahead to mentally prepare myself for my responsibilities. Overall, everyone had a lot of fun and walking through the dense forest provided a much-needed connection with nature.


Pablo Jose Gomez Echegaray

P.S. : Mami, encontre un lagarto seco y me arcorde de nuestros chistes.