“No two days are identical.”
This was the prominent thought pounding through my head as I hurried from door to door, knocking and waking my fellow Glimpsers up. Why was I up before anyone else? I was the Leader of the Day, the very first student to be given the role. I was nervous about setting the standard, but a bit excited for the same reason.
Today was Fun Day, although we all agreed that everyday so far has been a fun day. After we finished yet another delicious breakfast, we prepared to visit Cascada Blanca, the main attraction of the day. Upon arrival we were warmly welcomed by Don Victor, a sweet old man with a young and joyful soul. He shared with us the beautiful legend of the waterfall and how it came to be. A noble lady and her brother, oblivious to their shared blood, fell deeply in love with each other. They soon discovered that they were siblings and despite this fact they continued loving each other. Their father shunned them and demanded they end their incestuous relationship. Choosing love over obedience, they escaped to the location of the waterfall, which was nonexistent at that time, and together they leaped off the cliff. Teardrops fell from her face, then his, then a tremendous amount of teardrops poured from their eyes. Together their crying formed the waterfall which is now known as Cascada Blanca.
We all loved the story and he continued on to explain that the legend is ongoing even today. There was a rock that represented their eternal father who is still searching for his lost children. It was a truly amazing tale and it enhanced our experience of the waterfall which itself was over ten meters tall and led to a pond over thirty meters deep. We had an awesome time hiking to the fall, taking pictures with each other, and simply observing the intensity of the water in silent awe. Again and again, this country surprises us with its unique culture and natural landmarks.
Next to the waterfall was a café where we had a delicious lunch. As always we began to play cards and engage in conversation after we finished our food. While playing cards, Brandon began showing us his magic tricks and they were very impressive. All of us gathered around us and watched in disbelief as we saw him select the ten of diamonds from the pack of cards, immediately after Denis selected the card before him and shuffled it back into the deck. A few of us were so impressed that we contemplated taking up magic after this trip. It was a great bonding experience for us all, you might even say it was a magical experience.
During every bus ride there is music playing and on the ride back to the hostel, there was one song that we all sang our hearts out too. The song was “Young, Wild, and Free” by Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa and that moment was such a great moment because we were carefree, we were having fun, and we were living life. There is nothing more we could have asked for.
There was a surprise waiting for us at the hostel and it turned out to be Denis, the untrained dance master. He demonstrated and taught us numerous traditional and indeginious dances, including the bachata, salsa, a farmer’s dance, and a folklore dance. They were lively, loud dances and everyone had a great time and a great workout. It was definitely interesting to see the differences between the dances we are used to and the dances that are common here. However it is obvious that Nicarguans love to have fun and party as much as we do.
Dinnertime rolled around and we ate out again, this time at an Italian restaurant down the road. The food took a while to come out and while waiting we played more games to pass the time. Honestly it is incredible how easily our group can find ways to have fun and enjoy each other’s company when a week ago we weren’t even Facebook friends. When the pizza came out, we devoured it. Pepperoni, Hawaiian, and vegetarian pizza all disappeared down our throats. After eating to our heart’s content, Denis proposed that we have a photo shoot in the restaurant and we all immediately began to pose for our photos. We took an all boys picture, all girls, high school pictures, boy-girl pictures, and safety buddy pictures. It was just so much fun goofing off and finding creative, funny ways to look for our pictures.
The walk back to the hostel was full of energy carried over from the delightful dinner. Soon we gathered for the nightly meeting located on the third floor. I took charge, naming thorns and roses, pluses and wishes, and discussing the events of the day. There was nervous energy still leftover in me, but I had a newfound confidence which was grown from the positive feedback and support shown by my fellow Glimpsers. I loved it. As I passed the torch onto the next Leader of the Day, I felt a tinge of sadness because my time as Leader was over. I learned so much and I honestly believe I grew as a leader and more importantly as a person as a result of today.
” No two days are identical.” This thought echoes throughout my mind as the day comes to an end. My day of leadership was over, but the days of fun and growth are plenty and I look forward with an open mind, prepared to take in all the experiences, ready to learn and discover more about Nicaragua, and itching to grow more and more as a person. I cannot express in words the gratitude I have for this life-changing opportunity I have been given so I will end this extensive blog (sorry) with the quote of today.
“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” -Ghandi. This is the mindset I have developed throughout today and this is the mindset I wish to keep throughout my life.