Ecuador – Me To We Trip During Spring Break 2014

During this spring break I went on a Me to We Trip to Ecuador with 16 other other Mulgrave students and 3 teachers. I had a lot of fun during this trip. I learned about Ecuador as a country, the culture, how do people live their, etc. I made a lot of memories with my friends. During this trip I also got to know other people who I don’t talk to at school. I am also very happy that I helped people at Ecuador, we weren’t there for nothing. We helped them build the school, help the women groups make the necklaces, bracelets, etc.

Since our fly to Quito, the capital city of Ecuador is at 6:45 a.m.on Friday, March 14th, so we need be at airport at 3:30a.m. which is extremely early. So we got to Ecuador, and on the first day, March 15th, we visit a historical museum, and eat at a traditional restaurant at Quito.

Then on the second day, March 16th, we had a full day ride to arrive at the Chimborazo mountain where we stayed for 1 week in a nice and comfy lodge. There is only one group, our group stay at the lodge, so we kind of have the whole lodge to play, and hang out which is very fun. Then we went to work on the next following 3 days. We went to a school which is even high up in the mountain, and we need to take about 1 and half hour to arrive there. The people are building a new school, since the old one is a bit small to fit in every child who live in the village. We helped paint the roof, and the wall; choose suitable rocks for the building; sorting, sifting; making bricks, and a lot of other things. It is very impressive to see all the work we had done in these three days. Other than working we also played with the children at the school. Some of us play soccer, basketball, and frisbee with them, and some of us played the Hopscotch with them. There are three people who can speak Spanish in our students group, so communicate with the children is not that hard. But if the three people are not with us, sometimes we choose not to talk because we couldn’t speak Spanish.For the next two days, we went to two different women groups where we learn about their family condition,and for the first women group we learned and helped make the necklaces, and belts they are making to sell. For the second women group we helped them cut the feather from the sheep, and we also learned how to use the traditional ecuadorian sewing machine which is very cool and fun. When we were leaving we also got a chance to buy the beautiful things the women had made which is an interesting experience because we got to choose and buy things we like by ourselves. On the last day at Chimborazo which is a Saturday, we went to the school again, and we gave all our effort and energy because it was our last day to help the people building the school, so we want to work as hard as we could. At that night, there were also traditional Ecuador musicians came in and perform to us. All of us danced with the music they played,everyone had tons of fun, and we all bought a CD from the musicians at the end.

So it was Sunday, March 23rd, we were on our way to the rainforest, Amazon. I was really excited because I had never been to a rainforest before. As usual we took a day long bus ride, and at the end we also got 30 minutes of boat ride which is extremely fun too.Then we arrived at the lodge we are staying for the last 2 and half days. Amazon is really different from Chimborazo, it is hot, and wet (humidity), and there are a lot of insects at Amazon that “sing” during the night time. So it is quite annoying to woke up in the middle of the night from the noise the insects make. We also celebrate Torean’s birthday at Amazon during the second day at Amazon. We went on a hike in the rainforest on the first day which is very intensive because the rain is so huge that at the end of the hike all of us are soaking wet, even with a rain jacket on. Then we went to visit a women group where they make a lot of pretty bracelets and necklaces. Each bracelet/necklace means something, some of them means good luck, some of them means peace, etc. At there we learned how to make the bracelets, and we also got to buy a lot of them. Then in the afternoon we experience a ” cleaning harmony” by a shaman (traditional doctor). On the second day we visited a Chocolate farm at Amazon which is something I am really interested in because I love Chocolate. We learned about how the whole system work in the Chocolate farm, how do the people get the seeds, how do they sell the Chocolate seeds, etc. When we left the Chocolate farm we brought back some Chocolate seeds, and we make our own chocolate later that day. We put a lot of sugar in the chocolate, since it is too dark,and bitter. Even when we put 2 bowls of sugar into the chocolate it is still a bit bitter which stills taste ok. Most of us also tried to eat roasted grubs, but I didn’t because I am not a fan of eating bugs. Some of us even eat the grubs row! Since it was our last day at Amazon, we watched a traditional performance performed by the teenagers who live at the village next to our lodge. And all of us dance together, some of us even got to show the special talents they have to the village’s tennagers.

On the last day, we took another long bus ride to go back to Quito, and we spent one hour at the local market where we bought gifts for our family, and friends. Then we went to have a traditional dinner. It was hard at the airport to say goodbye to our facilitators, Sarah and Amy. They gave us bracelets as gifts to remember the whole Ecuador Trip.

This trip is a extremely fun trip. I got to challenge myself to do more works, and to help other people. I also got to know more about Ecuador’s culture, and people around me.

One of the highlight of the trip is the after dinner activity we did everyday with our facilitators. Everyday the activity is different, and we got to know each other ┬ámore throughout the activities, and we also got to build up our team, and for one of the activities we did at Chimborazo, we learned about Ecuador’s history. Other than activities, food we ate at Ecuador is amazingly delicious!!!!!



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