Day two of English tutoring we were meant to wake up at 5:30, as Leaders Del Día do, Aviva woke up promptly on time, while Alexis slept in until 5:45. After we finished getting dressed, we had to wake up everyone else in the group. After everyone was woken up and dragged out of bed, we all went down to the dining hall for breakfast. This beautiful morning we indulged in delicious fruit and yogurt plates. After that our main course for breakfast was tamales and eggs. Alexis got her gluten-free substitute as usual!
After breakfast we all met in the courtyard at 7:15 to get on the bus to the high school for English tutoring. After a 15 minute or so bus ride to the school, we all walked to our separate classes, with anxiety and nerves looming over us from the previous day of tutoring chaos. However, with our positive attitudes and open mindsets, this day was a major success (well for most of us…)
After tutoring, we returned to La Primavera. We had a guest speaker waiting for us, Pablo Manzano, who gave us a presentation about his community work with the Non-Government Organization, KOICA, and how he helped indigenous communities improve their lives.
Next, we had 5 minutes to race and get ready for our day at San Pablo farm. After a forty-five-minute bus ride and lots of sleeping Glimpsers, we finally arrived. As the bus rode up, the long pathway to the farm the beauty of Riobamba took our breath away. We saw cows grazing in the luscious green grass and many dogs barking after our bus. After an introduction from Jaime Mayorga, the farm owner, we were immediately set to work. First we spread out potatoes on the dirt ground in order to allow them to dry in the sun and become seeds, to help fertilization. Then we were faced with a towering pile of fertilizer (manure). We shoveled and bagged the fertilizer and loaded it into the farm truck. We followed the truck down a steep hill and began to lay out the fertilizer on the field of dead eucalyptus stumps, to help it regain nutrients. We did this process twice and it was back-breaking work that truly opened our eyes to the lives of rural Ecuadorian farm workers.
After exhausting work, we were rewarded with a delicious lunch and fun playtime with the farm dogs. Jaime Mayorga showed us a mother horse and her baby calf. He also showed us how to saddle them and explained to us how they use the horses for trips to Chimborazo. We then all huddled together to take a group picture with the stunning hills of Ecuador in the background.
After another forty-five-minute bus ride, we all rushed to shower the manure off and get ready to present our CAP (Community Action Project) ideas to Mauricio, the director of The Carlos Garbay Granja Integral, where we will be completing our CAP projects. All of our projects were approved and ready for action!
We then reflected on our day and the privileges that we have in the U.S versus here. After our group discussion, we began to prepare our lesson plans for day three of English tutoring.
We ended the day with a delicious dinner of steak, rice, salad, and green potatoes! We then headed to the nightly meeting to end our night and discuss tomorrow. And now we are here reflecting on our enlightening and eventful day, with graciousness in our hearts and excitement for what tomorrow’s day may bring.