Photo of the Week
Photo Title

« Back to Yak Board Archive Site

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013


WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16939
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-02 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-02 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

As a parent, I had no intention to ever post here, not foreseeing a need and knowing that I have so appreciated updates as they're posted by both students and instructors. This moment is different... I need to take this one moment, this one short post to acknowledge and honor, with a deep deep sense of honoring, the journeys, both the students' and the instructors', that each and every one of you is on- each different and unique and profound in your own ways as the individuals that you are. Thank you all for the opportunity to be a part of it through your words and photos. The profound experiences are palpable as you bring closure to your homestays and prepare for new adventures.

 

Munay- love from the heart~

 

Christine Pateros 

Lexi's mom 

[post_title] => Honoring... [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => honoring [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-02 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-02 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16939 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Honoring…

Christine Pateros,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

As a parent, I had no intention to ever post here, not foreseeing a need and knowing that I have so appreciated updates as they’re posted by both students and instructors. This moment is different… I need to take this one moment, this one short post to acknowledge and honor, with a deep deep sense […]

Posted On

04/2/13

Author

Christine Pateros

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16941
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-02 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-02 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

As my time in Cochabamba ends ,  I am full of gratitude.  We got to visit several amazing callawayas who imparted a  bit of their wisdom upon Callie, Margot, and I. Memina gave me a mini session the first time we met, without either of us knowing it. I enjoyed being in her strong, yet gentle presence. In the egg cleansing ritual she performed on my behalf, I recieved  the much needed advice to stop worrying about my family and enjoy the experience here in Bolivia. Her knowledge of Andean cosmology has helped my ISP project along majorly- Mucho Munay  DoÑa Memina!

 

Carlos Prado introduced me to the vast, incredible world of medicinal plants, along with giving everyone delicious ginger herb tea. Heis so open and willing to teach his culture to complete strangers in order to preserve it for generations in the future. I admire his passion for preserving the knowledge of the Hampiri and I hope to come back someday to study plant medicine and mesa rituals with him. Gracias  Don Carlos!

 

To the quirky Callawaya whose name escapes me, muchas gracias! I will always remember how you read my mind about women callawayas- mind speak is much more efficient :). Your life story is amazing: you have done so much and I hope to achieve the connection with the earth that you cultivate.  Please forgive me for losing your name for a moment.  I remember your words and I will attribute them to you.. I promise not to steal them. 

 

I can´t forget to thank the instructors for paying for all these visits, guiding taxis through difficult, unlabelled streets , and finding all of these rich resources for our individual projects. I know that you work really hard and I sincerely appreciate your efforts. 

 

That is the end of my speech! Now onto the Amazon for new adventures! 

 

Munay,

Lexi 

 

[post_title] => Beginnings and Endings [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => beginnings-and-endings-2 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-02 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-02 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16941 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Beginnings and Endings

Lexi Nowak,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

As my time in Cochabamba ends ,  I am full of gratitude.  We got to visit several amazing callawayas who imparted a  bit of their wisdom upon Callie, Margot, and I. Memina gave me a mini session the first time we met, without either of us knowing it. I enjoyed being in her strong, yet […]

Posted On

04/2/13

Author

Lexi Nowak

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16936
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-01 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-01 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

The day after tomorrow marks the end of our month-long homestay here in Tiquipaya. Only two more days with Dona Carlota and her family, two more days of meeting up at the program house, and two more days of taking the 106 trufi into Cochabamba. It´s hard for me to reflect on my homestay experience here because it has been very much the same as any other homestay experience I´ve had. That sounds a little ungrateful of me, I know, but let me explain.

 

I´ve done 3 homestays before this one in this year alone, and I´ve found that no matter how many times you live with a new family in a new place, you never get any better at it. You don´t become "proficient" at homestays like you do with other parts of travel; you can´t master a homestay like you can a language or a city´s public transportation system. You are always a little awkward around your new family, a little incompetent, especially when that family speaks a different language than you. Maybe it would be different if I spoke Spanish or if the homestay was 8 or 10 weeks instead of just 4. But in my experience, homestays are always fundamentally similar experiences no matter how long or how far away they are. You are always in the same humble position of being a guest in someone´s home. You are always in the same exciting position of learning about a country from the inside out or from the bottom up. And you are always in the strange position of being such an intimate part of a family for such a limited amount of time. Of course, homestays are different in many ways superficially, but fundamentally they never change, do they?  They always change you, though. (Cue a sentimental "awww" from the audience.) But seriously, you always remember your homestay families, you always think about them when you hear about their country on the news or internet, and you always learn something. In this homestay I think I learned about hard work (the parents had long hours each day and the mom worked in the Sunday market on the side) and living lightly. Unfortunately, I think my family had to live light out of necessity, there was enough money for plenty of food and for school for the three kids, but beyond a TV, DVD player, a fridge, and a stove, my family had few material possessions. And nothing was wrong with that. More importantly, they lived as though nothing was wrong with that. I never heard the kids ask for more than an apple when the family was out, I never heard the parents wish for a bigger house or even a washing machine. I think it would be nice to live without the consumer cravings that are stereotypical of developed countries. I think I´ll try to stem such cravings in my life in the States after I get home.

But anyway, to wrap up I want to return to my original point about homestays always being the same. I´m not complaining; I´m just letting you know that they don´t get any easier. And good! That just means they don´t get boring. Imagine if travel got easier every time you did it- how quickly it would lose its novelty, how terribly mundane it would become. We wouldn´t want that.

So thank you, Dona Carlota and family, for giving me the same experience I´ve had in every other homestay I´ve done: one in which I was accepted, cared for, and taught more than I could have been anywhere else.

 

[post_title] => Final Thoughts on Homestay [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => final-thoughts-on-homestay [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-01 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-01 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16936 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Final Thoughts on Homestay

Maddie Shankle,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

The day after tomorrow marks the end of our month-long homestay here in Tiquipaya. Only two more days with Dona Carlota and her family, two more days of meeting up at the program house, and two more days of taking the 106 trufi into Cochabamba. It´s hard for me to reflect on my homestay experience […]

Posted On

04/1/13

Author

Maddie Shankle

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16937
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-04-01 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-01 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

It was the saturday morning after Good Friday and we were preparing for Easter Sunday, when all of Mama Justinas brothers, their wives, and children would arrive after Church to celebrate the day with a big feast.
Duck soup was on the menu. Many of the vegetables were freshly picked from the backyard and the ducks were to be chosen from the flock waddling around the front patio.

“Are you ready?”, Mama Justina asked me, her usual playful smile spread across her kind face as we stood at the entrance of the gate behind which the chickens, roosters, and ducks wandered around pecking at corn kernels on the ground.
I looked at the ducks and wondered whether they knew this was their, " Fin dia del Mundo", their last day on earth, as Mama Justina referred to it. I shrugged, and we slowly began to approach the ducks, cornering the chosen three.

After a bit of a frantic chase, we managed to catch all three and headed out to the backyard.

As I held the feet and wings down, I watched as Mama Justi calmly and cleanly slit into the first ducks throat and whispered a quiet, "gracias".

 I held onto the duck tightly as the last moments of life left her small shaking body.
It was my turn next. I was flooded with a whole range of confusing and contradicting emotions as I switched places with my host mom. I looked down at the duck, its small black eye looking directly into mine. Panic filled my body. I felt sick to my stomach about what I was preparing to do. How could I take the life of this beautiful and innocent creature? A strong part of me felt it was fundamentally wrong to kill the duck. A stronger part of me felt it was wrong to eat animals without being conscious of how it ended up on my plate.

 

A few years back I had decided to become a vegetarian after learning about the disturbing conditions plauging the meat industry in the United States. Several months ago I made the decision to begin eating meat again for health reasons. While I try my best to buy meat that is ethically sourced, buying neatly packaged meat in the grocery store still disconnects me from a tremendous part of my food source.

 

After the shock of being exposed to animal slaughter had passed, I was filled with a deep respect for the  tremendous dignity that is brought to the cycle of life when you are able to  raise the animals you eat. As difficult and emotional as it was to  kill that duck, I am grateful to have had opportunity to  look into the eyes of the duck that I have spent the last month sharing a home with and thank it for  providing me with nourishment.

[post_title] => Dignity in the Eyes of a Duck [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => dignity-in-the-eyes-of-a-duck [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-01 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-01 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16937 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Dignity in the Eyes of a Duck

Margot Solomon,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

It was the saturday morning after Good Friday and we were preparing for Easter Sunday, when all of Mama Justinas brothers, their wives, and children would arrive after Church to celebrate the day with a big feast. Duck soup was on the menu. Many of the vegetables were freshly picked from the backyard and the […]

Posted On

04/1/13

Author

Margot Solomon

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16875
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-28 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-28 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

To anyone who reads this, this Yak is a response to my twin brother who posted one to me titled ¨Brotherly Antics¨. He is currently on the Life Along The Mekong Trip and in his Yak he told me why it was bad idea to come to South America. I hope you enjoy( if anyone actually reads this)my response to my brothers Yak.      

Before ¨I¨ begin with the pleasantries little brother I will inform you that you are in fact  completly and flat out misguided by calling me ¨you South American¨. For starters I´m going to correct you and say that I am in no way a South Amercian. Not that it´s in anything bad to be from such a culturally rich land but that I wouldn´t know the first thing about being a¨South American¨. I am only a ¨North American¨ who has been privilged enough to have such an extrodinary oppurtunity to come to a place like South America, more specifically Bolivia. On to the pleasantries, I´ve been great thanks for asking. How have you been? Now that that´s over with I´m going to tell YOU why going south was a great idea! But I bet going east has had alot of fun stuff too and I hope you continue to have a good time.

Yes, I do agree with the fact that me going in a southernly direction has lead me into a redundant experiance. But the Achillies heel of your statement happens to be that Fall is my absolute favorite time of the year. So I´m going to ask you why wouldn´t I want to indulge in a double helping of my favorite season? ¨may I have some more¨ As the young Oliver Twist said would describe my feelings of fall. To go into why Fall is, in my opinion the best time of the year is as fallows. One, being from Texas you should know that it is the mild temperature savior from the terrible heat that we have the pleasure of dealing with in the summer. In Bolivia it never gets that hot anyway but the great temperature has already been noted and I hope more is on the way. Two, fall is the time of change, just like in spring but fall´s colors are a little more artistic and of more to my liking. Never experiencing a Fall in Bolivia I am teeming with excitement of the unkown. You speak of as if you´ve been here comparing Bolivia to the land of Mordor. Again brother you have stated something that is incoherently wrong, not even close to hitting the target actually. Bolivia is flat out beautiful, any backpacker would start drooling at the mouth at the site of such a country´s landscape. I would know because I did just that after stepping off the plane in La Paz.

Due to laziness though I will not continue in this trivial argument for much longer and will conclude my responses to your incorrect statements. My decision to come here involved many things, but the thing that hooked me was while I was reading the descriptions on the Dragons website was the bit that said ¨TREK INTENSIVE¨. After that it took me about two seconds to decide what course I wanted to go on. As to carrying the 80 liter back all day, It´s what I live for and is absolutely wonderful, I know you prefer a nice river to float down so enjoy the Mekong.  You say I went south, I did but I don´t see this trip as just that. I see it as a trip going up, you ask how can that be? I tell you, up in the sense of elevation, up in the sense of heightened enlightenment from being in such a country. My time here as opened my eyes to new things and perspectives that will give me an extraordinary insight during times in my future.

I hope that this response was nothing close to what you were looking for. As well as to leave you dazed and confused staring at your computer screen thinking ¨what just happened?¨. But alas brother this is all in good fun and I await your response to this Yak so that I may again explain to you why you are incoherently wrong. So that we may being a literature ping-pong match across the Yak board.  Enjoy the river my friend, I´ll have a cold beer waiting for you when I pick you up at the air port on june.  CHOW!

[post_title] => Brotherly Antics Response [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => brotherly-antics-response [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-28 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-28 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16875 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Brotherly Antics Response

W. Heyward Manning,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

To anyone who reads this, this Yak is a response to my twin brother who posted one to me titled ¨Brotherly Antics¨. He is currently on the Life Along The Mekong Trip and in his Yak he told me why it was bad idea to come to South America. I hope you enjoy( if anyone […]

Posted On

03/28/13

Author

W. Heyward Manning

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16914
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-28 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-28 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Dear Mary Jo, 

 

Thanks for your question, we are heading off to the Amazon soon! We are wrapping up our time here in Cochabamba and leave for La Paz next Wednesday night.  While we will not be in back in Cochabamba, it may be possible for Group B to pass along any new mail that arrives.  They will be here from April 17th to the 26th, and after that date we will not be able to receive any more mail.

 

Thanks for all of the letters you have sent so far though, I know Maddie has loved receiving them. 

 

We look forward to posting more photos and adventure stories soon. Have a wonderful weekend!

 

Abrazos,

 

Team A  

[post_title] => Response to Mary Jo's Questions [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => response-to-mary-jos-questions [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-28 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-28 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16914 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Response to Mary Jo’s Questions

The Instructors ,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

Dear Mary Jo,    Thanks for your question, we are heading off to the Amazon soon! We are wrapping up our time here in Cochabamba and leave for La Paz next Wednesday night.  While we will not be in back in Cochabamba, it may be possible for Group B to pass along any new mail […]

Posted On

03/28/13

Author

The Instructors

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16904
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-27 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-27 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 
"There is no description, no image in any book that is capable of replacing the sight of real trees, and all of the life to be found around them in a real forest."- Dr Maria Montessori
What if every time we went into nature we saw it with fresh eyes? What if we looked at everything as if we had never seen it before? There is nothing like nature. There is no way to fully describe it. So why is it not more exciting for us? What happened to that first look of amazement?
A few days ago our group worked with a non-profit organization called Performing Life. Performing Life works in Cochabamba with children who work and or live on the streets teaching them circus skills so they have a better source of income. The families of these children also make bracelets to sell in the US so they can earn even more money to improve their lives in bigger ways like building a house for themselves. Performing Life helps the children with skills in circus performance, theater, and music but they also help children register for school, offer a tutoring program, and send each child to the dentist four times a year.
The first day we worked with Performing Life we did a theater workshop with some of the kids after which they attempted to teach us circus skills like juggling, balancing on a slack line, unicycling, and poi. A lot of these skills are much easier said than done. I struggled and was amazed at their talent. The following night the children performed in the main plaza in Cochabamba. It was incredible. They juggled, they juggled with sticks of fire, they uni cycled, the juggled while they uni cycled, they juggled sticks of fire while they uni cycled. It was quite an impressive show and gave me an idea of how hard they must work to learn their skills. 
On the weekend we took 12 kids from Performing Life on an excursion to Incachaca (a jungle reserve a few hours outside of Cochabamba). Many of these children had never left Cochabamba or the communities surrounding it and were seeing the jungle for the first time. As we passed through the towns and entered into pure nature the noise level in the bus suddenly increased as they all began to notice their surroundings. Some stuck their heads out the window dodging the branches that hung close to the bus. Others started counting butterflies (I think they got to over 100). Others pointed out everything they saw: "Look at that tree! That flower! Do you see that bug?" When we arrived and started hiking they sprinted ahead with endless energy. Every once in a while they turned around to share their discoveries. "We found a waterfall up there! With all the steam it looks like the clouds are falling!" They picked sugar cane, played in the rivers and never ceased to observe and explore.
Watching them interact with nature I realize how much I take it for granted. What if every time I took a hike to a river I reacted as they did: as if I was seeing it for the first time? What if I had only heard about nature or read about it in books? I would notice everything: all the different plants and animals. I would hear all the different birds, the sound of the waterfalls, the trees swaying in the breeze. I would smell all the different flowers and plants. To be honest I would probably be overwhelmed with everything there is to absorb. But, because I am so used to taking hikes and seeing different parts of the world I have become immune to its wonders. I don´t notice all the amazing things around me. I just walk. Maybe I hear a bird or notice a butterfly, but my senses are only open to the most obvious things. Furthermore I don´t run through the forest with excitement and enthusiasm. I walk slowly lost in my own thoughts, closed to my surroundings. Maybe that's okay. After all that introspection and quiet connection with nature does offer something; yet, there is something inspiring about that energy and amazement and being able to witness the wonders and acknowledge how amazing they are.
In the end the children from Performing Life taught me much more than circus skills. They reminded me to appreciate nature for all that it is. It´s not just trees and dirt. It´s sounds and smells, animals and flowers, mountains and rivers, sunshine and clouds. It´s not just another place. It´s something to be excited for. A part of the world to be humbled by. They reminded me of nature´s wonders and showed me what it looks like when you truly enjoy it. It looks like carefree innocence, excitement, awe and happiness. I hope to find that happiness in the future with the children from Performing Life in mind.
[post_title] => Seeing The Jungle for the First Time [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => seeing-the-jungle-for-the-first-time [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-27 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-27 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16904 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Seeing The Jungle for the First Time

Eliza Davis,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

"There is no description, no image in any book that is capable of replacing the sight of real trees, and all of the life to be found around them in a real forest."- Dr Maria Montessori What if every time we went into nature we saw it with fresh eyes? What if we looked at […]

Posted On

03/27/13

Author

Eliza Davis

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16905
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-27 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-27 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

After nearly a month our time in the rural community or Tiquipaya on the outskirts of Cochabamba is coming to a close.  In the past weeks students have had the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with their homestay families, make use of the Spanish they've learned in formal classes, explore an independent study topic of their choice, meet with local activists and academics, and explore the city of Cochabamba and the surrounding landscape.  It has been a rewarding and inspiring time!

 

Next wednesday we will travel as a group to La Paz, exploring this dramatic city for a few days while preparing for our next trek.  From there we will hike from the alpine peaks surrounding La Paz down into the cloud forest and tropics below, following an Incan trail.  In the Amazon we will journey down the Beni Rive by boat, then spend several days in the Moseten and Tsimane village of Asunción, an indigenous community in the Pilon Lajas Biosphere Reserve.  Making our way back to La Paz we will then travel around Lake Titicaca to the dazzling city of Cusco.  There we will initiate the Expedition phase of the course, in which the students will use the skills they have learned to help design and implement the last couple weeks of our itinerary.  

 

The following is a list of the Independent Study Projects that students have been exploring the past few weeks:

 

Sarah - Andean music and guitar lessons with a renowned Bolivian musician from the band Quimbando

 

Margaret - traditional weaving classes with two Aymara women, who are also homestay mothers

 

Troy - painting lessons with Mario Vargas Cuellar, a well-known Bolivian painter

 

Christian - a post-apocolyptic film with a Bolivian documentary filmmaker.  Christian has written, directed and is now editing a short film based on the Cochabamba Water War

 

Maddie and Eliza - the girls are collaborating with a loca NGO, the Democracy Center, on climate change issues in Bolivia and how young people in the area understand and seek to mitigate local climate concerns 

 

Jack - neol-liberal policies in the region and how they impact current social and political realities

 

Heywerd - Charango lessons (a small Andean guitar) with a Cuban singer and musician

 

Greg - salsa lessons at a local dance school

 

Lexi, Margot and Callie - the three girls are exploring Andean cosmo-vision, ritual and medicinal plants with spiritual leaders and healers from different parts of Bolivia 

 

It will be sad to say goodbye to our families and friends in Tiquipaya, but we are excited for the adventure that awaits!

[post_title] => ISPs, goodbyes, and new adventures [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => isps-goodbyes-and-new-adventures [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-27 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-27 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16905 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

ISPs, goodbyes, and new adventures

The Instructors,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

After nearly a month our time in the rural community or Tiquipaya on the outskirts of Cochabamba is coming to a close.  In the past weeks students have had the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with their homestay families, make use of the Spanish they’ve learned in formal classes, explore an independent study topic of […]

Posted On

03/27/13

Author

The Instructors

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16899
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-26 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-26 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

I think you guys are headed to the Amazon in a week or so.  Will you be back in Cochabamba afterwards to retrieve mail? thanks...Mary Jo374 Shankle

[post_title] => itinerary and mail [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => itinerary-and-mail [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-26 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-26 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16899 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

itinerary and mail

Mary Jo Shankle,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

I think you guys are headed to the Amazon in a week or so.  Will you be back in Cochabamba afterwards to retrieve mail? thanks…Mary Jo374 Shankle

Posted On

03/26/13

Author

Mary Jo Shankle

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 16866
    [post_author] => 30
    [post_date] => 2013-03-21 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-21 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

   Making hand figures in the dark with a flashlight. Sneaking out when mom isn´t looking to go swim. Running around barefoot and twirling to the neighbor´s music. Playing tickle and mercy and marvelling at the image of yourself in a camera. Fighting with your siblings. Singing songs and playing with magnets. Chasing bicycles. Finding lost kittens. Making fun of the cousins. Having secret boyfriends and giggling over kisses. Discovering everything. Jumping over puddles and playing tag. Sneaking around and tattle-taling on others. Writing in a book of secrets, playing with dolls, taking things apart and spying on your parents. Holding hands. Cuddling. Asking everything that pops into your mind. Putting on makeup. Trying on jewelry. Staying up late. I have loved being eight again.

   My two beautiful host sisters have, by far, been the highlight of my time in Bolivia. All of these things, from the moment I ride to our corner and the two of them chase me home yelling and laughing, to the moment we finish making hand figures on the wall with my flashlight and they fall asleep in my arms (only knowing that I will carry them downstairs), have brought me back to childhood.

   The joy, love and innocence that emulate from their glowing brown eyes can melt any tiring day into a rejuvinating one. These girls take care of me, worry about me when I´m late and miss me when I´m gone. Never did I expect to literally be called una hermana (a sister) to these girls and una hija (a daughter) to their mother. Under this small roof in the Bolivian countryside surrounded by cows and corn, on a dirt road with no name in a neighborhood with no internet, I have a home.

[post_title] => Being 8 Again [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => being-8-again [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-21 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-21 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://my.wheretherebedragons.com/wp/?p=16866 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 268 [name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [slug] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 268 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 241 [count] => 94 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 13.1 [cat_ID] => 268 [category_count] => 94 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013 [category_parent] => 241 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2013/andes-amazon-a-semester-spring-2013/ ) ) [category_links] => Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013 )

Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

View post

Being 8 Again

Sarah Gledhill,Andes & Amazon "A" Semester, Spring 2013

Description

   Making hand figures in the dark with a flashlight. Sneaking out when mom isn´t looking to go swim. Running around barefoot and twirling to the neighbor´s music. Playing tickle and mercy and marvelling at the image of yourself in a camera. Fighting with your siblings. Singing songs and playing with magnets. Chasing bicycles. Finding […]

Posted On

03/21/13

Author

Sarah Gledhill

1 2 3 4 5 10