By Anya and Doug
Hola Jimmy, Katie, Bradley, Jillian, Jake, Toe, PJ, Cate, Juancho, Anna, Dylan, Ellie and Maggie!!
Well, here we are, lying in hammocks overlooking Taganga bay in Colombia thinking back on our wildly successful three-month adventure. We are overwhelmed with feelings of love and gratitude as we think about our group and all of the fun times we shared this semester. You all each brought so much to Equipo Quetzal and this semester couldn’t have been what it was without any one of you.
When we first started in the LA airport, we were so excited when we got to join all of you and saw what a friendly, energetic and musical group we had. Throughout our next few days of orientation in Matagalpa we came to realize that all of that was true and you all offered so much more. It didn’t take long for group to become family. We appreciate all of the effort and intention you guys put into making sure this was an unforgettable trip.
Nicaragua offered us a jumping off point for getting our Spanish vocabulary off the group, exploring the natural world and learning how to better live in harmony with it. We were welcomed with opened arms to communities and incredible hosts and families. They shared their food, stories and hearts with us as we learned to open ourselves up to new ways of life.
Costa Rica was a short but sweet stay. The women at Cirenas shared their knowledge and passions with us and we dove deeper into permaculture and conservation. With our unfailing luck as a group, our one scheduled late-night turtle patrol proved fruitful as we saw a Mama Olive Ridley turtle laying her eggs. It was a great way to celebrate our halfway point on semester.
Ah, and then Guatemala! With our burgeoning Spanish skills flirting with levels of fluency we dove into the intense history and vibrant culture of Guatemala. Once again, Spanish classes and homestays gave us great perspective on our own privilege and impact we can have on the world. We went on a magical mystery tour at the Yoga Farm and got stretch both our bodies and minds under the guidance of our out-of-this-world spiritual mentors. You guys took the reins as we journeyed to some of the most remote and beautiful places Guatemala has to offer before we showed off our surf skills on the rugged Pacific Coast.
We took a brief break from being rustic travelers to live it up to enjoy all of the beauty above and below the sea that Roatan provides. Turtles, gratitude activities, baleadas and blowing bubbles were the perfect way to cap off an epic 3 months together.
We can’t thank everyone who is reading this enough for your support of this growth and transformation filled semester. It’s been an honor and privilege to have shared these experiences with such a loving, open and enthusiastic group of humans. Thanks for the memories, lessons and friendships, you all are in our hearts.
Anya y Doug (Anyoug)