Time does fly when you’re having fun! It seems just like yesterday that we were all here together learning about Peruvian culture, working hard on those guinea pig houses and surviving that hike up to Machu Picchu. Over those past two weeks, you all learned new things about yourself and others. You tested your limits, both physically and mentally and you got to experience and explore a wonder of the world.
Our mornings were dedicated to our service work. The group was split into two teams and spent the two weeks helping to build a guinea pig house for two families in need in the community of Chocco, Peru which was located about 20 minutes outside of Cusco. Remember where it all started? Picking the ground, moving rocks, making the “barro,” but of course the best part were the adobe bricks? Am I right? We started by leveling out the ground and ended up with walls. During your time at service, dedication, strength and perseverance were the tools needed to keep going. To make time go by fast, we listened to many international songs shown to us by different students. That was definitely one of the highlights of service. Watching the sheep, goats and chickens was also like having live entertainment. The community was so thankful for the work you did, those houses will soon be filled with many guinea pigs and will provide those families with extra income and food.
Although our mornings may have been a little tough, our afternoons were filled with fun and cultural events. Feeding the llamas and alpacas pounds and pounds of grass, was a great time! Everyone got some pretty great pictures and some funny/silly ones as well. We also learned about some of the health issues in Peru and about the country’s economy when our guest speakers came to home base. Those talks were so informative and gave us an inside look at the Peruvian world. The girl’s orphanage was such a blast! You got to see what their lives were like and you got to spend a whole afternoon making the girls laugh! I can still hear their adorable giggles.
Your donations went a long way, thank you for that! How many beans did you shell at Patabamba? Probably more than you thought you would ever do in your lifetime but just remember how much it helped those families. They opened up their homes for the day and treated everyone like part of their family. They even shared a delicious meal of potatoes and cheese. Yum!! Have any of the shaman’s words come true? Let us know if they do! We are all very curious. Last but not least, we can’t forget about the city tour! Getting to know the place that y’all called home for two weeks was an awesome experience. How did the Incas do it? Remember the master stone? WOW! Getting to eat at the restaurant with such an amazing view and great live show was so memorable.
Now to the best part: MACHU PICCHU! WE SURVIVED! Day one…am I going to make it? Day two….are we there yet? Day Three… WE’RE HERE! Does anyone still have blisters? Do you still have those magical pictures saved on your phone? I remember seeing everyone’s faces light up as soon as we walked into Machu Picchu, it was such a grand sense of accomplishment! Give yourself a pat on the back; we hiked about 24 miles, both up and down and no one had to be carried on the horse. TROOPERS! Y’all are now super prepared to conquer your next hike! Don’t forget, the hike is always worth the view.
As our trip came to a close, we couldn’t end it without a market run and one last family dinner. I’m pretty sure you guys bought the whole market. From ponchos, to slippers, to alpaca rugs you guys bought enough souvenirs to last y’all until your next trip back to Peru. Our last family dinner was filled with delicious chocolate cake, a little bit of guinea pig, nonstop dancing, photo ops with YouTube stars and an amazing live show! It was the perfect ending to a perfect trip.
You are all now back in your own homes with nice hot water, strong Wi-Fi and a closet full of clean clothes. I hope that you have shared and continue to share what you learned here. May the skills you acquired, help you in your future endeavor. You are all leaders and you can all make a difference, big or small. Don’t be afraid to be the change. You have a wonderful support system within your Global Leadership Adventures family; utilize each other to make this world a better place. This experience was one that we will never forget, you helped people from a completely different place and made a positive difference in their lives. That’s important but don’t let that be the end, make that your beginning.
Thank you for a wonderful two weeks, I enjoyed every minute of it and hope you all did to!