Hello family and friends,

My name is Melissa Almonte and I was the leader of the day today. I was really nervous about being the leader because the previous leaders did such an amazing job. Today we had our second free day, which was much needed. The day before we climbed a mountain and we were all tired, so a free day was very well deserved. But although we had a free day we were able to be productive.

Our wakeup call was at 8:30 AM. Yayyyyyyyy!!! We didn’t have to wake up so early. But a quick shout out to Carolyn, Wilder, and Miguel for waking up earlier to go with Paul to buy the CAP materials. Thank you so much, Carolyn, Wilder, and Miguel we appreciate you! Everyone was in a good mood this morning and it made me very happy. We met up in the lobby and I did my first headcount! It was really cool and I felt like I was a prepared leader of the day. We walked to Roma Santa for a very delicious breakfast. After breakfast, we went back to the hotel where we did a quick headcount, signed ourselves out and took some money out. Then free time officially started.

We were separated into two groups. But before we split up we went to the Laundromat. After we finished handing our bags of clothes we separated. Although I was only in one group, from asking them, seeing them around the city, and hearing their stories we all had a ton of fun. In my group, it was Trista, Carolyn, Laura, Brianna, and Nicole. After splitting off from the other group we went to Plaza Roja and we bought so many bracelets, key chains, blankets, and purses. I personally love Plaza Roja because everyone sells so many beautiful items and all of us cannot wait to be able to share our souvenirs with our friends and family. Shout out to Nicole and Trista for knowing how to bargain.

Then we walked to Roma Santa for lunch. No one was late!!!! Everyone made it back early and I’m so proud of them. We all enjoyed our food and we came back for seconds. After lunch, we went back to the hotel to sign ourselves back out for the second part of our free day. We all went to the supermarket to buy snacks because we were craving snacks. Then we went to the Internet café and we enjoyed talking to our family members, it was a bit emotional but only because we miss you all so much.

Then we walked back to the hotel and had a meeting for English tutoring. We got to our groups and created our lesson plan. Congratulations to all the groups for being able to create lesson plans, I cannot wait for us to start tutoring our students. We all got this and I cannot wait for us to become teachers and understand how to appreciate our own teachers.

After lesson planning, we wrote a rough draft for our letters of appreciation to our lovely sponsors. Some of us had writer’s block but we overcame it and we all feel proud of what we wrote. Then we had dinner where we gave Nelson, the son of our lovely chef Isabelle, a ukulele. We all signed our names and left a little message. He got emotional and we did a group hug before eating a delicious dinner. Lastly, we ended the day with our nightly meeting. I passed the torch to Natalie and Wilder and I cannot wait to see them work hard for our first day of CAP and for our English first tutoring session. I had such an amazing experience as the leader and I cannot wait for the next leaders to have their turn, they’ll be great.

Thank you so much, see you for the next blog.