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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester


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    [post_date] => 2013-12-06 09:27:29
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    [post_content] => Greetings from the La Paz airport!
This morning, after a poignant good-bye, all of our students departed safely and on-time!
Ariana, Hanna, Daniel, Gus, Tomu, Graham, Nick, Nico, Michael, Sandy and Jake are on American Airlines' flight 922 to Miami.
Maya took LAN flight 2569 to Lima.  From there she will be headed to Quito, Ecuador to join her parents.
Charlie took Avianca flight 908 to Lima.  She will join her family there.
It was difficult for us to bid the students farewell; most of them will exchange good-byes in the Miami airport.  Look forward to their arrivals!
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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Take-off!

Los Instructores,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

Greetings from the La Paz airport! This morning, after a poignant good-bye, all of our students departed safely and on-time! Ariana, Hanna, Daniel, Gus, Tomu, Graham, Nick, Nico, Michael, Sandy and Jake are on American Airlines’ flight 922 to Miami. Maya took LAN flight 2569 to Lima.  From there she will be headed to Quito, […]

Posted On

12/6/13

Author

Los Instructores

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    [post_content] => Dear Andes & Amazon Students & Families,

It is hard to believe that 3 months have passed since embarking on this incredible adventure! It won’t be long and students will be boarding their planes back home. We are sure you are anxiously awaiting their arrival!

Below is a reminder of the return group flight information for eagerly awaiting families:

December 6th, 2013
American Airlines AA 922
Depart: La Paz (LPB) 7:40am
Arrive: Miami (MIA) 4:15pm

We will have a Dragons Administrator on call for the duration of the travel day. Starting on Friday, 12/6, should you need any assistance after regular office hours, please call our “on-call” number at 760-709-0848.

We wish all students a great trip home!

Sincerely,

Boulder Admin
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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Return Group Flight Information

Dragons Admin,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

Dear Andes & Amazon Students & Families, It is hard to believe that 3 months have passed since embarking on this incredible adventure! It won’t be long and students will be boarding their planes back home. We are sure you are anxiously awaiting their arrival! Below is a reminder of the return group flight information […]

Posted On

12/6/13

Author

Dragons Admin

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It´s the last day in country, and we have all day free in La Paz before our flight early the next morning. This morning I dressed in my most local-looking/least tourist-looking clothes I had, so today as I buy the final gifts for family and friends back home I can hopefully get a better price. For breakfast, we valiantly returned to the Lanza Market to enjoy our customary egg/avocado/cheese/sandwiches and our smoothies from the juice ladies. Silly darlings, they thought we were some silly tourists, and tried to charge us extra. Don´t worry, we set them straight though. Nico joked with our favorite tucumana lady, who assured us that the next batch would be delivered ¨ahorita.¨ Sure enough, when we returned in twenty minutes, they still hadn´t arrived. Our preferred banana bread stand was closed as we passed by, so we had to settle for our second choice, which is fifty centavos more expensive.

 

It´s a bittersweet farewell. I am certainly excited to go home, but there are so many things here in the dirty, noisy, haggling, sometimes smelly, trufi-filled, indigenous-populated, tiendita-strewn city that I´m going to miss. There aren´t too many other places in the world where you can get a delicious and filling breakfast for less than two dollars. That´s not the only thing that will be gone. After taking our bags through customs in Miami tomorrow, we´re going to say farewell to the twelve wonderful and inspiring friends that we´ve made during the last three months. Maybe we´ll see each other again, and for some of us that could be the end. My bedroom at home is going to seem awfully lonely, and a terribly wasted sleeping space. ¨If we moved in another mattress and had someone sleep on their pad underneath the desk, I think three could definitely squeeze in here, though the tent bag will have to stay outside.¨

 

I´m going to instinctually try to purify the water from the tap, I´ll wipe down my utensils and dishes before using them, I´m going to think a three dollar coffee is ridiculously expensive. Where´s there a public baño? How much does it cost? Does anyone have any toilet paper? I just ran out. Wait, there´s toilet paper supplied in the bathroom? And you can flush it? There are going to be some readjustments during the first few weeks.

 

I´m going to be sad this trip is over. It has given me so much. I need to thank Dragons, my instructors, fellow students, the locals here, everyone else who allowed the last three months to be such a wild and eye-opening experience for me, and of course, more than anyone, my parents and family. Here´s a second thank you to all those same people again.

 

It´s been a blast.

See you soon.

Nick Crews [post_title] => Heading Home [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => heading-home-2 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-12-05 17:38:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-12-06 00:38:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://wheretherebedragons.com/?p=95176 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 203 [name] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester [slug] => andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 203 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 240 [count] => 118 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 11.1 [cat_ID] => 203 [category_count] => 118 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester [category_parent] => 240 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/fall-2013/andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester )

Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Heading Home

Nick Crews,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

It´s the last day in country, and we have all day free in La Paz before our flight early the next morning. This morning I dressed in my most local-looking/least tourist-looking clothes I had, so today as I buy the final gifts for family and friends back home I can hopefully get a better price. […]

Posted On

12/5/13

Author

Nick Crews

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Dear parents, families, and friends,
We have recently arrived to our beloved La Paz for the last time on this course!  After three months of travel, home stays, trekking, meaningful discussions, joyful moments, and also challenges, students are spending their last day in Bolivia enjoying this unique city.
Transference ended yesterday.  This four-day retreat on beautiful Lake Titicaca gave students the time and space to begin to reflect on all that has happened, all that they have learned, and what they hope to bring home with them.
Here are some comments and reflections that students have shared in these past few days...
-
I have learned to appreciate other cultures, and ways of life.
I have learned to keep the big picture in mind, and not to sweat the small stuff.  I used to get upset about menial problems, and now I am happier because I don't become upset by these things.
I have learned to feel more comfortable with who I am, because before I was worried more about other people's judgements.
I have become much more comfortable with expressing myself in a group setting.
I feel like my life is beginning now.  Never before have I seen so many options ahead of me.  I am the happiest I've ever been, and I feel a great sense of clarity around who I am.
I have learned how to work well with people who are different from me, and who come from different backgrounds.
I feel really inspired by the values of Andean cosmovision, such as reciprocity, and I aim to incorporate these values into my life back home.
This trip has taught me how to be more disciplined and organized.
This trip gave me a great foundation for traveling in a variety of settings, and I am excited to put these skills into practice in future travel!
I feel an unprecedentedly deep sense of appreciation for all I have in life--my family, my home, my friends, the opportunities that I have.
I was reminded that despite the different cultures of my family back home, and my homestay families, people are people.
I was proud of myself and the group for getting through so many physical and emotional challenges.
I have become more self-aware, and I'm excited to become a better person through this awareness.
-
These past few days have also been filled with much laughter, song, and celebration.  Spirits are high as we reflect on all that has happened, all that we've learned, and all that's to come.  Tomorrow morning, students will depart from the La Paz airport, and begin their journeys to join their families.
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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Thoughts to Take Home

Los Instructores ,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

Dear parents, families, and friends, We have recently arrived to our beloved La Paz for the last time on this course!  After three months of travel, home stays, trekking, meaningful discussions, joyful moments, and also challenges, students are spending their last day in Bolivia enjoying this unique city. Transference ended yesterday.  This four-day retreat on […]

Posted On

12/5/13

Author

Los Instructores

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    [post_content] => We went to a casino today. Going there made me realize have personally developed as a people. We now realize that money is not everything. Winning is also fun. We went in with 10 soles and came out with 20. My Aunt Debbie would be proud. i understand that gambling is wrong, but sometimes it can be fun. Being in South America had helped us get a better understanding on money and what it's worth. In the end we know that family is worth more than money.

 

Shah outs owt to Arby's foh yak o da weeek

 
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Casino Royal

Dengul, Jeik, and Sanford,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

We went to a casino today. Going there made me realize have personally developed as a people. We now realize that money is not everything. Winning is also fun. We went in with 10 soles and came out with 20. My Aunt Debbie would be proud. i understand that gambling is wrong, but sometimes it […]

Posted On

12/2/13

Author

Dengul, Jeik, and Sanford

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Well, yesterday was Thanksgiving - meaning the last thursday in November (:o) and the last week of our incredible journey!! We had a fantastic sushi dinner, contrary to what may have been expected for a holiday usually celebrated with eating turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, pies upon pies and appreciating time spent with family. In the past three months, however, the Andes and Amazon Group B has become its own sort of family. Our dinner at a fancy Asian fusion restaurant last night evoked a whirlwind of emotions for me. I am incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to bond with this small group of very different people from very different backgrounds over snow and hail beating down on us on a pass while on our treks yet appreciating the many gifts of the Pachamama, watching terrible movies on bus rides that become 30 hours long due to Bolivian slacktivism, playing soccer during our community stay in Asuncion, the hundreds of bugs of the Amazon, the overall awesomeness of La Paz and our time spent at “Hostal Austria”, spanish classes and smelly Lorenzo in Cochabamba and now, even the absolutely incredible and awe-inspiring ancient ruins of Machu Picchu. Nevertheless, this close to the end of the trip it is hard to ignore the longing to see my family and friends again, especially last night as we talked about what each of our families would be doing on Thanksgiving. I have to admit that being able to throw toilet paper into the toilet, not having to ask for “agua hervida” or use a steripen, eating lettuce without fear of bacterial infection, not being able to bargain for absolutely everything (including bus tickets down from Machu Picchu) and not being able to find delicious $1 coffee, are all things I'm going to have to get used to again.

 

Thinking back, however, expedition was everything I expected and more. The Salkantay trek and especially the day we did the highest pass of approximately 4600 meters was spectacular. Fabian, our guide from Nacion Caros, and his wife Patricia kept us entertained by playing the flute and singing respectively. The most powerful moment during the trek for me was during the guided meditation at the top of the pass, during which we again heard Fabian´s flute and Patricia´s chant for the “Apu” (god) of Salkantay, and were handed three coca leaves each to bury facing the mountain, dedicating them to families and friends and once more, being grateful of the gifts of the Pachamama.

Just a couple of days later, we found ourselves waking up before 5 am to climb approximately 1700 irregular and steep steps up to the gate of Machu Picchu. Getting to the top of Wayna Picchu and looking over the vast expanse of mountain ranges around us and the ruins far below us, I was left in awe. The ruins themselves are of course being preserved and restored by the Archeological society of Peru but the extent of how developed the Incas´ agricultural, architectural and infrastructural techniques were is still clearly visible and truly incredible. Although I had actually already visited Machu Picchu when I was less than two years old (and so obviously didn´t remember it at all), I am incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to truly appreciate the “Lost City of the Incas” during this trip. [post_title] => Whirlwind of Emotions back in Cusco [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => whirlwind-of-emotions-back-in-cusco [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-12-02 08:42:50 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-12-02 15:42:50 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://wheretherebedragons.com/?p=94994 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 203 [name] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester [slug] => andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 203 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 240 [count] => 118 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 11.1 [cat_ID] => 203 [category_count] => 118 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester [category_parent] => 240 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/fall-2013/andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester )

Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Whirlwind of Emotions back in Cusco

Hanna Ewell,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

Well, yesterday was Thanksgiving – meaning the last thursday in November (:o) and the last week of our incredible journey!! We had a fantastic sushi dinner, contrary to what may have been expected for a holiday usually celebrated with eating turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, pies upon pies and appreciating time spent with family. In the […]

Posted On

12/2/13

Author

Hanna Ewell

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    [post_date] => 2013-11-29 13:46:55
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-11-29 20:46:55
    [post_content] => The last ten days have been our chance to take initiative and plan all details of our expedition. It has not gone completely smoothly, but looking back, I am proud of our group and so excited about all of the amazing things we have done. The sheer beauty of the trek, taking selfies with Fabian (our guide and friend) under the looming Saulkantay peak, feeling the history and power of Machu Pichu, exploring modern and ancient Cusco have all been incredible.

However, I have also come to appreciate this group and how we have learned, in our way, to function as a group. Maybe our way of communicating and making decisions isn´t the most efficient (as Daniel would say, we vote, discuss, revote, and then maybe discuss again) but we have definitely figured out how to work together and ensure everyone is heard.

The memories I will carry with me are the moments I have had with different group members, the challenges we have faced together, and how we have supported each other to overcome them. The last 10 days has made me feel closer to my peers and I will leave this amazing trip with more appreciation for every one of them.
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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Peruvian Adventures

Maya Ellis,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

The last ten days have been our chance to take initiative and plan all details of our expedition. It has not gone completely smoothly, but looking back, I am proud of our group and so excited about all of the amazing things we have done. The sheer beauty of the trek, taking selfies with Fabian […]

Posted On

11/29/13

Author

Maya Ellis

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After being in Bolivia for more than two months, experiencing the culture of the Bolivian Andes and in the Amazon through home-stays, beautiful landscapes while hiking, and stays with small communities. We all have  many amazing and memorable adventures that we are not going to forget. On Sunday we were ready to leave Cochabamba with tears in our eyes, saying goodbyes to the Home-stays families. It was hard to say bye, however, we were also ready to have our last adventure of this course here in Peru, especially now that we started our "student led expedition." We are in Cuzco and it has been interesting for our students to experience what is still considered the center of the world according to the Incan worldview. We arrived early yesterday morning at 5 am and we passed through the main plaza admiring the gorgeous Catholics churches built on top of what it used to be Incan temples. This city has so much beauty in it. It is also great to see our students to take more ownership planing the upcoming trek and they now have a solid plan in place. We are going to stay in Cuzco for 1 more day until the 21st, which will be used for logistic planing, including food for the trek, transportation to the start point of our hike, and daily activity prep. Our visit to Machupicchu ruins will be different from the usual way of visiting the sacred ruins. Usually people take the train to visit Machupicchu. Our students decided to hike in and out of Machupicchu and they do not want to take the train at all. On that note, below is our student expedition schedule. Nov. 21st leave Cuzco to Mollepata and spend the night at Cruz Pata Nov.22nd we start our trek around the magical Salkantay sacred mountain. We are very excited to see it all coved with snow. We start in Cruz Pata to Salkantay Pampa. Nov. 23rd Salkantay Pampa to collpapampa Nov. 24th Collpapampa to la Playa Nov. 25th La Playa to Llajta Pata or Santa Teresa. This will depended how the students are in term of energy level. Nov. 26th Santa Teresa to Puente Ruinas (Machupicchu base camp) Nov. 27th Visiting Machupicchu Ruins. This is going to be amazing Nov. 28th Puente Ruinas ( Machupicchu base camp) to Hidroelectrica and the, go back to Cuzco by prive bus. Nov. 29th are going to post yaks about the experience of Salkantay trek And Machupicchu visit. Nov. 30th From Cuzco we go back to Bolivia (Copacabana) Best, Alan, Michaela, and Kyle   [post_title] => Sacred mountains are waiting! And our student expedition schedule [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => sacred-mountains-are-waiting-and-our-student-expedition-schedule [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-11-20 10:38:20 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-11-20 17:38:20 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://wheretherebedragons.com/?p=94628 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 203 [name] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester [slug] => andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 203 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 240 [count] => 118 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 11.1 [cat_ID] => 203 [category_count] => 118 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester [category_parent] => 240 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/fall-2013/andes-amazon-b-fall-2013-semester/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester )
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Sacred mountains are waiting! And our student expedition schedule

Los instructores,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

After being in Bolivia for more than two months, experiencing the culture of the Bolivian Andes and in the Amazon through home-stays, beautiful landscapes while hiking, and stays with small communities. We all have  many amazing and memorable adventures that we are not going to forget. On Sunday we were ready to leave Cochabamba with […]

Posted On

11/20/13

Author

Los instructores

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    [post_content] => Arrived to La Paz this morning after a fairly quick nitetime bus from "Cocha" as we say here. Defintely was the worst night of sleep I´ve had on a bus so far which was sort of a bummer. I attribute that to my recent discovery that it is indeed legal to drive drunk in Bolivia. So, of course, every bump and swerve in the road I felt was a sign of a non-lucid driver. Needless to say, we did indeed arrive this morning to La Paz, and after enjoying breakfast at a table with four police men and our two next bus drivers, our quick layover was over and it was on to Cusco.

The lesson I have learned today is that it can always be worse. Always. While before I may have thought 24 hours on busses was about as long as a day of travel as it could get, I now know it can (and will) be worse. For example, protests. In Bolivia they like to protest. Whether it is a three month march across the country to stop a road from being built, strikes against druk driving laws, or in our case today, the blockade of every road out of and into the greater area La Paz area. How we happened to caught in the middle of both sets of blockades in the middle of an worn out soccer field, I don´t exactly know.

What I do know, however, is that waiting eight hours for 30 or so ladies to decide to get off the middle of a bridge that sits six feet over a river with no water in it, makes a tough day of travel.

We just got through the protest now and are soaring through the beautiful contryside as the sun sets below and endless range of mountains, and the border patrol officers are starting to think, it's about time to go home. I don´t know what we will do if we get to the border and no one is there to let us trhorugh, but thats all part of the fun I suppose.

Despite a long day, in fact by the time we get to Cusco it will have been nearly 30 hours on busses (best case), despite this, it hasn´t been all too terrible. Decent food, good company and conversation, and a comfy chair, it´s not that bad. The biggest bummer is that instead of a night in Cusco I will spend a night either in some little border town or seat 35 on a Continente Internacional Bus. Todo está bien, and as I´ve learned in Bolivia, Tranquilo.
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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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Tranquilo

Nico Carrino,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

Arrived to La Paz this morning after a fairly quick nitetime bus from “Cocha” as we say here. Defintely was the worst night of sleep I´ve had on a bus so far which was sort of a bummer. I attribute that to my recent discovery that it is indeed legal to drive drunk in Bolivia. […]

Posted On

11/19/13

Author

Nico Carrino

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    [post_title] => How we all feel about Machu Pichhu
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Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

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How we all feel about Machu Pichhu

Nico Carrino,Andes & Amazon "B" Fall 2013 Semester

Description

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-LbvFckptY

Posted On

11/19/13

Author

Nico Carrino

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