Fishing, Hiking, Planning and a Bonfire! – Andrew Roupas

Today was a very eventful and fun packed day. We started our morning with a delicious breakfast and then moved on to our first activity of the day. Our first activity was learning how to fish the traditional Costa Rican style which used a “hand reel”. The hand reel consists of a pvc pipe with fishing line wrapped around it with a hook and weight attached. This was very interesting as none of us were accustomed to this style as we had all only used traditional rods before. The nibbles were minimal but we did not let this put a damper on our mood. Ben had a fish hooked and in the midst of reeling it in it escaped which was frustrating but still exciting to know that one of us was (somewhat) successful. Being able to experience the Costa Rican culture and fishing style first hand was enriching and is something myself nor none of my fellow trip mates will forget. The second portion of our day we spent picking up trash along the soccer field with the children. Interacting and talking with the children is so much fun as the language barrier I thought would prohibit me from communicating is non existent as the kids are filled with kindness and interacting with them is easy. Learning about the children and there differing personalities is so much fun and connecting with them about sports and other topics is a unique and wonderful and is something truly special. Me being an American 19 year old connecting with an 8 year old Costa Rican child is truly a special experience and is something I will cherish forever. The ending to our day was near perfect as we went to our favorite beach spot with kids and crafted a fire. I personally spent most of the time on the beach enjoying the ocean and body surfing with the kids. Their energy and humor is contagious and makes each experience so much fun. On the fire we cooked hot dogs and marshmallows and ate them with the kids while enjoying the mottled orange and pink sunset behind the towering cliffs. There was no poker tonight as we were all tired out from the numerous activities today and we look forward to another eventful day tomorrow as we start a more structured routine with a school in which we are teaching a scheduled class that we created earlier. – Andrew Roupas