We woke up bright and early at 7 and ate a nutritious breakfast to prepare for some serious service. Our service for the day was clearing out non native plants and planting new ones. We (the leaders of the day) started a game of infection for our break.
After service, we ate a delicious lunch and prepared for snorkeling. While snorkeling we saw a bunch of cool sea life like sea turtles and sea lions. We also survived the sea lion trying to eat us. We got some town time and ate a TON of empanadas because they opened up just for us.
After a fun filled day we headed back to base and played cards. For dinner we had rice, omelets and veggies with delicious fresh juice. Our after dinner activity was an informative video followed by a discussion. We were all super tired so went straight to bed after a long day.
-Beth and Elias
As the sun sets on this once in a life time adventure, tears and memories come flooding out like the ocean tide on a Galapagos beach. On this trip every single child’s life has been transformed for the better. We conserved habitats, hiked up monumental mountains and swam in encapsulating lagoons. We made intimate connections with the wildlife and were exposed to the wonders of the natural world.
The group bonded into one impenetrable kaleidoscope. Everybody brought their unique perspective and we melded into an inseparable stew of personalities. We laughed together, we cried together, we had conversations that transcended intellectual and philosophical forces. The culture here spread to our souls like a wildfire traversing through the cold yet beautiful spectacle of the wilderness.
The food was decadent and mouthwatering. All of us became overjoyed at the thought of having a meal together. Around the table was the place where we shared our experiences and became more than just teens on a trip. We became a community, a tightly knitted quilt of friendship. On our last day in Quito we visited the equator, which is the line that separates the northern and southern hemispheres. We were entranced by the sights of ancient native artifacts and delighted by stories about a culture that lived long before us.
Later that day, we went to the market and shopped. We explored the market which was a colorful explosion of authentic items hand crafted by the local artisans. Everybody bought souvenirs and gifts so the experience of this trip will live on into the future journeys of our life. We then did some final games and activities, all wearing the colorful fabrics and clothing we purchased from the aforementioned visit to the market.
Our last dinner together was bittersweet. Teats gently drooped down our faces as we realized that our farewell was soon to come yet we found solace in an emotional discussion of the time we had and the comical moments that made us laugh because they were humorous. Everybody said there goodbyes or how they say in Ecuador, “ADIOS”. We were sullen that this transcendental journey was over but ready for the adventures to come in our individual lives, no matter what they may be. The lessons learned on this trip will stick with us like sap fresh from a Galapagos tree.
-William Stern, William Spencer and many others
The final few students are on their way to the airport, most of the group is arriving to the USA and their families momentarily and, finally, it is time to close up the summer in the Galápagos.
Session 4 and all its wonderful, hard working, thoughtful and entertaining students was the perfect way to cap off an extraordinary experience in the islands.
Thank you to every student that made this session so memorable and thank you to all the families, friends and loved ones that made this trip possible.
From the entire Galápagos team, thanks for an awesome session!