Hola familias y amigos,

Waking up this morning was a bit tough due to a really rough night but we woke up and had hot chocolate and bread for breakfast. The power went out twice in the middle of the night and we (at least the girls) were up because it was so steaming hot without fans. There was also crazy heavy thunder and lightning that scared a lot of us. Breakfast was so light because today was Living Like A Local day. They don’t typically eat as much as we do.

We split up into small groups and were assigned houses of different family members of the the Dios Dira community. Joanna, Sujevi, Ramona, Juana, Claudia, and Sixta, were kind enough to open up their homes to us strangers and give us a glimpse into their lives. We were given tours of their houses and big yards, did daily chores, played with the young children, and asked them many questions about their lives here in San Cristobal. This was our favorite day so far because we really connected to the reality of life here and bonded with not just the kids but also the adults. Even while we are here in the same community as them, we didn’t realize how spoiled we were in this accommodation…we are fed by cooks, given fans to endure the heat, have running water and electricity almost all the time (except the few nights we ran out of water or electricity for some time)…being with these amazing families gave us a realistic view to life here in the Dominican. The glimpsers and families had a big lunch all together and played games, blasted music and danced, did face paint, and just talked for what seemed like forever, it was so much fun!!

Back at the hostel we took some time to think about the Community Action Project we will start in a few days, a project that will hopefully positively impact the lives of the people of the community and
Fundacion Sol Naciente, our partner organization. We decided as a group to renovate the bleachers, bathroom, and extra room in Sol Naciente by finishing the room, painting the bleachers, and installing
new plumbing and stalls in the bathroom. With our $20,727 Dominican pesos, we tried to budget all our supplies for the entire project. So far the plans are working out !!

Check in tomorrow for Global Business day after we go to the coffee plantation!
Con carino,
Kat y Lexi

p.s. mom and michelle, i think im gonna come home with a spanish accent … love, KM
p.s. mama Steph, im staying very hyrdated! love, LB