Tuesday, November 27, 2012

For Fun

After school today, myself and another teacher took 3 of our students on a hike up a waterfall... here are some pics and a pic of a cool bug I saw at my house.

Monastery where the trail to the river starts.

Jumping off the rocks is fun.

Climbing the rocks is fun.

They tried to convince me you can go under the waterfall and still breathe.

There are so many weird bugs here.

Monday, November 26, 2012


This weekend was probably the most unique Thanksgiving of my life.  Instead of a normal T-day with a gluttonous amount of food and lots of family around my day was spent teaching, driving, grocery shopping, and eating at a pizza place on a Caribbean beach.
Even here in the DR we only had a half day for Thanksgiving and had Friday off altogether so a group of friends and I headed to Cabarete for the weekend.  Last time I went to the beach we stayed at a hostel that was home to more mosquitoes than anywhere on earth and was also one of the hottest places on earth.  There was no way that was happening again, so we spent a little more money and stayed at a nice beach rental with our own pool and even air conditioning.  Anyone looking for a good place in Cabarete should check out Olas de Oro, its a little pricey but with multiple people in them they are reasonable.
The weather was perfect this weekend with some of the time being sunny and some of the time being cloudy and cool.  We had a fun little pool in our backyard and when we first got to the house I went straight upstairs to check out the balcony/roof jumping capability and instead of opening the completely clear glass door I walked right into it.  The other calamitous event of the weekend is when we were cooking dinner and someone went to lite the oven and it blew up, most of my leg hairs were singed and most of my body was engulfed in in flame for about half of a second.  These are things that make vacationing in a country like this a little more fun.
In the end we spent most of our time at the beach, playing monopoly or rummy, and eating.  Great times were had by all.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Young Life Camp!

So this weekend myself a couple a few other adults and a bunch of students hopped into some vans and headed to Pico Escondido.  Pico is the YL camp that serves the needs of the Dominican Republics  Vida Joven and Young Life needs.  The camp is at the base of a mountain, so the scenery there is quite remarkable.  I have had the opportunity of being at the camp multiple times before, mainly when friends and I were climbing the mountain it is on.  The opportunity to go with a group of 9 guys was one I was not going to pass up.  I have never been part of a weekend YL camp and I had never been a leader of any kids that I didn't completely share a language with, but through all of it I learned a lot and I hope the students did too.  Four of the students that came with us go to Doulos and I see them almost everyday, its exciting to connect with them on a deeper spiritual level one that we can continue exploring.  The other 5 students were from different schools around here, the only reason I knew them was from playing soccer with them.  I am excited to get to know these guys better and when I am with a couple of them I am sure to learn more Spanish, just from the fact that they don't speak English.
Obviously this week is Thanksgiving and I am definitely ready to have a little time off.  We have a half day on Thursday and no school on Friday, so a group of us have decided to spend a long weekend at the beach.  Its definitely nice to have the Caribbean only a couple hours away (it's okay, you can be jealous).   
I feel like every time I am writing here I think about friends and family back home which makes me think about how long until I am back in the States.  4 weeks from now I will be sweatshirts and enjoying cold weather!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Beginning of a New Season

So after so many hot days I feel that it is finally starting to cool down a little bit here in Jarabacoa.  We had a good amount of rain this weekend and I hope that it has finally drove the temperature down to a place that it will remain for some time.  This weekend was maybe the first time a hoodie was reasonable attire for here.
Besides the weather some other things going on things have been rather low key for the most part.  On Friday night some of our students were involved in vocal competition called Festival de la Voz.  The competition has three first round nights, a semi-final, and a final.  The next 2 weekends are a continuation of the opening round and then the semis and final will be on back to back weekends.  Overall it was a very unique experience to attend, but fun as well.
Next weekend is Young Life camp, so after school on Friday through Sunday afternoon will be rather crazy.  Hopefully things go well and the kids learn a lot about Jesus and have a lot of fun as well.
I looked at my calendar just before writing this and realized that I have just over a month before heading back to KC for Christmas.  Time is flying!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

I forgot something!

So a friend and I were talking and I remembered that I have a bunch of pictures from a very fun YL scavenger hunt we did.  I didn't get to run around with everyone because I twisted my foot playing soccer (its all good now), but I did get to man home base and get the slide show of all the pictures ready, which is why I have all of them on my computer.  So here are some of the pictures of students and leaders doing crazy stuff around Jarabacoa.

Arm Wrestling with a stranger.

Holding a live chicken (turkey was close enough).

High Fiving Jesus!

Petting a street dog!

5 people on one Moto!
With spam!

My favorite... holding a strangers baby!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Random happenings.

So easily the most exciting thing to happen in my week was the fact that Danilo, the President of the DR, stayed at the hotel right by my house.  Danilo's entourage was constantly driving by our house for quite some time.
A close second was yesterday being the The Day of the Constitution, which got us out of school.  The third most exciting thing was that there was much talk of an country wide strike against the Department of Education.  This would have meant no school and angry mobs marching around town slashing peoples tires because they want to get payed more.  Unfortunately I missed out on this and we are at school going about our normal business.
The 4th most exciting was the Manny Ramirez is joining the local  baseball team, Aguilas Cibaenas.