Sunday, March 13: Experiencing Paradise!

Shannon ’17 writes:

This is the day all of us have been waiting for: going to the beach and swimming in the Pacific Ocean.  It was particularly exciting for me because I have never been swimming in the Pacific, so the anticipation has been building all week.  

When we arrived at la playa El Miramar, everyone was so excited to get into the water because it is so hot here all the time.  My smile went sky high when I saw the beautiful, bright, blue-green Pacific.  It honestly was everything I had ever imagined it to be.  The waves were perfectly sized to enjoy and the temperature was perfectly refreshing.  Within five minutes of arriving, Lily, Hedaya, and I ran into the turquoise sea.  For most of the rest of the day, we never left, although we should have in order to put on more sunscreen! We did take a break for lunch, which was delicious. Ana, who has been cooking for us all week, grilled chicken and pork over an outdoor parilla, and served it up with avocado, a chopped tomato/onion/and sweet pepper salad, rice, and tortillas.  After lunch we formed a circle in the courtyard of the beachside house we were using for the day and played hackey-sack, which has become one of our favorite group games. Then it was back into the ocean!

The whole experience was so relaxing, a great way to spend our free time on the weekend. It was, by far, one of the happiest days of my life.  I´m going to miss the sound of the waves crashing onto the shore.

After we returned to Managua and had a supper of gallo pinto, queso soave, tortillas, platanos verdes (thinly sliced and quickly fried so they taste like banana chips), and canteloupe, members of our host families came to pick us up for the night.  Back at my family´s home, my Nicaraguan sister came into the room where I was writing this journal and just watched me write, even though she doesn’t know English.  She´s very observant, however, and soon she asked why I had written the date ¨3/13/16.¨  She said that there is no 13th month.  I explained the order in which we write the date in the US, and she explained that in Latin America the order is different, first the day, then the month, then the year.  It was a small revelation for me, but I felt as though this moment is what the whole trip is about, learning the daily differences in our cultures and encountering them firsthand.  I am forever grateful to George School for giving me this opportunity.

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