This past summer, I went on the most amazing mission trip ever to Costa Rica. I was able to stay the entire month of July interning at a place called the Abraham Project which is in Tres Rios. While I was there, I spent most of my time at the project doing construction to help them complete the new multipurpose building that they are planning on using for a sanctuary, dentist’s office, doctor’s office, administrative offices, and indoor soccer field. When I wasn’t doing that, I was either helping out with the children in the children’s homes or I was spending time with the Americans (Gringos) that came down from various churches to help out. While I was with them, I got many chances to travel within Costa Rica. One of the places that I got to go to was a camp called Orotina, which was by no means a five star hotel, but that’s what made it so exciting. It gave us the chance to go on a hike through the jungle to a waterfall with only a machete to clear the path. Since we knew the path was dangerous, we went when it wasn’t raining. What we didn’t take into account is the fact that in Costa Rica it rains basically every day at least once so we ended up soaked and completely covered in mud from head to toe. Our next dilemma was figuring out how to get our clothes clean enough to pack without a washer. From Orotina, we headed west to JacÃ³ beach, which is known for its intense waves that it definitely lived up to. The few of us that did go surfing ended up intensely sore afterwards. On an excursion with another group, I was able to go north to La Fortuna which is where the volcano Arenal is located. While were we at Arenal, we went to the hot springs at the hotel BaldÃ that felt amazing after a long, adventurous day. It ended up being especially interesting when we discovered an enormous crab that had been sitting inches away from us with pinchers the size of baseballs. While we were in La Fortuna, we also did the zip line through the canopy. This was one of the most amazing experiences ever because it feels like you are simply flying through the air and it provides a beautiful view of the volcano and nearby lakes. You just have to make sure to eat a lot beforehand because if you are too light you will get stuck and have to pull yourself the rest of the way. The last place that I got to explore much was in San JosÃ©. I got the chance to go to several of the markets there where I learned that prices were miraculously much lower when I bargained in Spanish rather than in English. I also got to work with a ministry called Cristo Para La Ciudad (Christ in the City) where I helped serve meals to people in the red-light district of San JosÃ©. It was a heart-breaking experience, but at the same time it was eye-opening seeing how blessed my entire life has been. Overall, I would not trade this experience for anything in the world. It has definitely made me better at embracing the Costa Rican philosophy of Pura Vida (Pure Life)!
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