A couple of weeks ago, I traveled on a trip to Costa Rica with 18 fellow classmates from my school. Our teachers have a service learning trip every year, that students can sign up for. As soon as they spoke to us about the opportunity, I signed up for it, because I was looking for a change in my life. We spent three months getting ready for this trip by learning their historical background, learning about their volcanoes, learning the language, talking to our Tico pen-pals through Skype and e-mail, and preparing interview questions for important people in their society. The day we got on that plane, I was ready for what was to come. I was glad that I went with the school because we went to three parts of Costa Rica. We stayed in San Jose (the City) where we met with out Tico pen-pals, who were really nice and welcoming. We played volleyball and soccer with them at their school. We invited them to go see a volcano with us, that was really beautiful, and we had a party with them. We feel like family now, after all that we’ve done with them.
We also stayed in Yorkin (the Rainforest), and Puerto Viejo (the Caribbean). The part I liked the most was being in Yorkin. While we were in the rainforest, we did service projects and also learned about the culture of the Bri-Bri tribe. While doing the service projects, it was tiring, but after doing them, I felt like they were worth doing. We felt like we were a part of their culture instead of just looking at what they do, we were doing what they do. I loved the Bri-Bri, because they were so full of life, and content where they were, even though they did not have the technologies like we have them here. They may not all be rich in technologies, but many of them are rich in resources. The children there learn the essentials they need in order to survive, because the Bri-Bri grow their own food and raise their own animals. They seem to be completely independent. I loved this because it really spoke to me, on how a family works together, to get everyday things done. They shared their culture with us, by teaching us their native Bri-Bri language. They gave us traditional food, showed us how to make chocolate and how to use a bow and arrow. There was one guy that always played his guitar and sang for us. They were just so welcoming.
This trip really taught me more than I expected. It really gave me a better outlook on how I should take advantage of more opportunities, and live life to the fullest. The Costa Ricans I met were people that loved and lived life great. They helped me get a better grasp of my life, and make me have an open mind, because I may not expect something. I can definitely say that I gained more than I expected throughout this trip, and I’m glad about that.
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