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    [post_date] => 2017-05-01 08:34:08
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    [post_content] => Dear Friends and Family,

We are happy to report the group has arrived safely in Miami and has passed through customs! You will soon be together, hearing the stories and sharing photos of this adventure. Instructors have reviewed connecting flight itineraries with the students to make sure they know how to arrive at the domestic gates. Please feel free to give us a call at (303)-413-0822 if you have additional travel questions.

All the best,
Dragons Admin
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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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The Andes and Amazon Groups Have Arrived in Miami!

Eva Vanek,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Dear Friends and Family, We are happy to report the group has arrived safely in Miami and has passed through customs! You will soon be together, hearing the stories and sharing photos of this adventure. Instructors have reviewed connecting flight itineraries with the students to make sure they know how to arrive at the domestic gates. Please feel […]

Posted On

05/1/17

Author

Eva Vanek

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2017-05-01 07:47:13
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-05-01 13:47:13
    [post_content] => Transference begins on Day One and lasts forever.

This is what we tell students, what the stories support, what we believe.

Transference, the act of folding new experiences, new learnings, new challenges into the rest of life, is an ongoing gift and struggle.

At the end of this 3-month course, we settled our band of travelers into the lush embrace of the cloud forest.  At a tranquil Eco-lodge perched on a ridge above Coroico, we spent our days reflecting on the past, celebrating the present, and looking forward to the future.  We oooohhed at humming birds, aaaaahhed at views of snow-capped peaks, popped the spring-loaded fruits of impatiens and giggled.

We compressed time, built a schedule, attempted to order supportive processes for our hearts and minds. Hearts and minds, however, have their own agendas.  On the day set aside for considering the past, we also thought about the future.  On the day for being present, for play and honor and togetherness, we thought about everything.  On the day for contemplating the future, we noticed the ghosts of the past we will carry there with us.  Time is more flexible in the human heart than clocks can measure.

In my own transference, I reflect on the lessons I have learned with this group.  I recall our joys, our successes, our strifes, our strides.  I examine the worlds of culture and place we have glimpsed in this time, shared with us by people we can never adequately thank or repay.  I look at everything I have learned about this group of students, these people I have begun to know.  The hard parts and the easy pleasures meld into this thing we call Life.  And whether in Bolivia, Peru, the United States, or China, life is what we are all doing.  We learn, we share, we laugh, we twirl, we cry, we fall, we keep on.  We grow.

 

Students,

I hope this time in Peru and Bolivia has stretched your perceptions.  I hope you see in more colors, hear in more tongues, think with more ideas, feel with more hearts.  I hope you have learned to question your first impressions and all the ones that come after.  I hope you have learned to see others in yourself, and also to cherish difference.  I hope you have grown more comfortable with people and more uncomfortable with complacency.  I hope this trip has inspired and tested and hurt and uplifted and helped to push you a little farther on the paths of your making.  Resist.  Celebrate.

 

It is 4:10am on Day Eighty-Three.  I am sitting in the quiet of the airport and imagining I can hear your footsteps on floor above me as you board your first plane.  The travel is only part of the journey.  Journey well.

This is the beginning.
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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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“End” is Only an English Word That Means Beginning

Nikki Jones,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Transference begins on Day One and lasts forever. This is what we tell students, what the stories support, what we believe. Transference, the act of folding new experiences, new learnings, new challenges into the rest of life, is an ongoing gift and struggle. At the end of this 3-month course, we settled our band of […]

Posted On

05/1/17

Author

Nikki Jones

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    [post_date] => 2017-05-01 03:29:18
    [post_date_gmt] => 2017-05-01 09:29:18
    [post_content] => 

Dear family and friends,

At 2a.m. in the darkness and fog, we arrived to the airport in El Alto. We had our final group farewell, as eleven of our students boarded their flight to Lima. Starr and the instructors said goodbye to the rest of the group. Starr will stay on and travel in Bolivia and Peru for another month.

In Lima the group will also say goodbye to Emily, as she embarks on her own three-month adventure in Peru. From there the 10 remaining students will be on their way to Miami, and very soon home to you!

We know you have missed them all, and we are so grateful to have had the time to learn from them and travel together.

Abrazos,

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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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Students have departed La Paz

Matt,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Dear family and friends, At 2a.m. in the darkness and fog, we arrived to the airport in El Alto. We had our final group farewell, as eleven of our students boarded their flight to Lima. Starr and the instructors said goodbye to the rest of the group. Starr will stay on and travel in Bolivia […]

Posted On

05/1/17

Author

Matt

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    [post_date] => 2017-04-30 13:51:03
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    [post_content] =>  

Peeling potatoes: A daily activity in each place that I visited. I first peeled potatoes in Parque de la Papa, Peru. Perched on small stools, we huddled around two baskets and a bowl of water on the floor with knives in our hands. The potatoes were picked up, peelings falling into the other basket and the peeled potates placed in to the bowl of water. I sat beside Hilda, my host mom, her baby Ismael gurgling in the aguayo on her back, smoke from the fire stinging our eyes as we peeled in silence, simply enjoying the presence of one another. As the months passed, I also peeled potatoes on the Ausangate trek, in Tiquipaya every morning with Abuela Maria, and sitting in the kitchen in Maraqua crater, Bolivia. Each time become more deft with my knife skills and learning from the women who were doing this exact thing across the country.

Holding hands: Mariadna's (my 9 year old host sister) small, rough hand clasped mine as we walked to her house. It was our first day in Parque de la Papa and already the warmth of this community was wrapping around me, holding my hand and reaching my heart. On the Ausangate trek, I reached for Patricia's (our guide's wife) hand the exact moment she reached for mine, giving each other the strength needed to climb the hill. In Tiquipaya, my sobrino (nephew) Joel held my hand was we ran around the courtyard chasing the ducklings. His little boy laughter filled the air with the beauty of happy times and the joy of playing together.

Laughing and miscommunication: So, so much laughter at Doña Eugenia's house. I ask her a question and her blank face in response showing me that I am making no sense as we then both break into laughter. Or the times when she tells me something and I think I understand and go and fetch the spoon. Nope. She meant grab the rag for the hot pot. And the times when I have lunch with Abuela Maria and she talks to me in Quechua and I smile and nod, not realizing that I am supposed to respond. The laughter that connects and brings together people from different cultures and languages, reminding me that we are all human.

These memories and others like Patricia blessing the water in my water bottle, washing clothes by hand in the sun with Doña Eugenia, braiding Mariadna's hair, having my hair braided by my host sister Daisy, milking the cow with Whilder at my Granja Polen- my ISP site, sharing fruit juices with Alex in the market or eating eggs, potatoes, and rice with my fellow vegetarians, walks to and from the program house with Quinn and Alex everyday in Tiquipaya, and singing and dancing at the girls sleepover.

 

Every single moment on this trip has been special, special because of the people I have shared them with, special because they are mine. These memories will stay with me, give me comfort when times are hard, and connect me with a network of friends that stretches miles and across oceans. There is nothing else that I could ask for, and for that I give thanks from the bottom of my heart. Urpillay Sonqollay.

 
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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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Memories I hold in my heart

Emily Smith,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

  Peeling potatoes: A daily activity in each place that I visited. I first peeled potatoes in Parque de la Papa, Peru. Perched on small stools, we huddled around two baskets and a bowl of water on the floor with knives in our hands. The potatoes were picked up, peelings falling into the other basket […]

Posted On

04/30/17

Author

Emily Smith

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2017-04-30 13:50:28
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    [post_content] => 

Today is the last day. Tomorrow, every one will be apart and go to different  places. In China, we say 天下没有不散的筵席 (There is no festival that does not end). Now, it is time to close this three mouth festival.

It is raining in La Paz right now and I feel extremely sentimental.

I decide to record some lovely moments in this trip as my good’bye to everyone.

Shitty Action Movie in Cuzco: when Cuzco is raining, everything feels surreal. Henry, Pixie and I run to the darkest corner of Cuzco, become the winner of scanverger hunt, eat a big pizza and saw a shitty action movie together.

Words, words, words: I learned so many dope words on this trip. From yaa yaa yaa , to sah dude, to deck, to bae, to all the fresh dancing movements, etc.  Special thanks to Quinn, who is extremely good at breaking down the meaning of the words and using the words to create some dope rap lyrics.

Derekstarr World: every one will remember Derekstarr world. It is the most magical spiritual experience ever(recommended to drink Starr special drink when experiencing it).  Shout out to my boy Derek who creates this performance together!

Oh Chinese oh: hug James and Derek who create so many fun moments of speaking Chinese together. Is Taiwanese accent sounds better. I doubted that. Is Derek a 帅哥. maybe. Is our performance of Chinese song awesome. Definitely! Let´s learn more dope Chinese words next time when we meet!

Dance Dance Dance: I love watching Jasmany dance with Matt. It is SWEET. I love watching Emily dance with Quinn in order to gain the cinnamon roll. It is WEIRD. I love watching James dance with his host sister Teresa. It is BEAUTIFUL.

Oh my food: Emily is such a good baker. From the pie in birthday party, to the pancake in Sucre trek, to the brownie in the movie night, such a delicious memory in the trip…(Of course, credit to others who helps create the food, especially Pixie who is sitting next to me thinking she also contributes a lot!=

The rain stops and I think it is time to end these endless lovely moments. Since I didn´t include everyone above, I decide to write some separate thanks for them.

Rex: oh Rex, you are such a chill person. I need to listen to your music to see if you are really artistic as you said. Also, remember you should dye your hair yellow and get a Bolivian haircut while listening to David Bowie!

Caroline: Since we have similar movie taste(Wes Anderson), I believe you are an awesome theatre actor, I am looking forward to finding you in some dope movies or theaters.

Tim: At first glance I thought you were a kind person but later I found your savageness. But I like it since I am also a savage person.

Alex: I need to visit Montana to see if it is as awesome as you said. Also as a witch doctor, I see you have a lot of mountain energy!

Galen: Your blue eyes are BEAUTIFUL, PRETTY AND SHINY AS A STAR!

Conner: You are always one of our group. Miss you bro!

Nikki: You find too much secrets of my hidden identity as a witch doctor. Send you an invisible leaf for good luck.

Finally, time to end this longest yak I have ever posted. Good luck my homies! See you guys in the future!

(Pic: sent you guys the beautiful sunrise in Amazon that can take you to Derekstarr world if you jump and sink into the river)

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Towards the end: all those lovely moments

Starr Wang (The Witch Doctor),SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Today is the last day. Tomorrow, every one will be apart and go to different  places. In China, we say 天下没有不散的筵席 (There is no festival that does not end). Now, it is time to close this three mouth festival. It is raining in La Paz right now and I feel extremely sentimental. I decide to […]

Posted On

04/30/17

Author

Starr Wang (The Witch Doctor)

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    [post_date] => 2017-04-26 16:07:37
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    [post_content] => 

Hello from the Hotel Sol y Luna,

Our group has come to the last section of the course after leaving Sucre and ending expedition on the twenty fourth. Through this transition the focus has largely shifted to reflection on what has happened during our time in Bolivia and Peru. For me this period has many steps for me to fully comprehend the weight of what I have seen and experienced.

Acceptance is the first step in this process for me as I account for the events and relationships that happened or did not happen. The challenging, rewarding, and negative times are all essential for an understanding of the complexity of this time and each carries lessons that I can take with me for the future. I try to be honest with myself to accept the reality of the experience that did happen rather than thinking of other realities I might have wanted.

After being honest in my recollection of the events of the trip I transition to analysing my experience to learn more about the world around me and myself. This has been a continual process throughout my time with Dragons and the space in transference allows for those ideas to be solidified and extended with more reflection.

Finally, there is the process of sharing. I feel that this will be one of the most impactful parts of transference as I not only try to share with the group and individuals on this trip, but also prepare to share with the people outside of this trip. Bringing back the growth that I gained from this trip is essential to connecting this time to my home and the people around me.

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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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Transference

Tim Frawley,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Hello from the Hotel Sol y Luna, Our group has come to the last section of the course after leaving Sucre and ending expedition on the twenty fourth. Through this transition the focus has largely shifted to reflection on what has happened during our time in Bolivia and Peru. For me this period has many […]

Posted On

04/26/17

Author

Tim Frawley

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    [post_date] => 2017-04-26 09:59:24
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    [post_content] => Dear Spring 2017 Andes and Amazon Semester 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 (all times are in local time zones):

Monday, May 1st

LATAM Airlines #2460

Depart: Lima (LIM) 8:30 am

Arrive: Miami (MIA) 3:35 pm

We will have a Dragons Administrator on call for the duration of the travel day. Should you need any assistance after regular office hours, please call our “on-call” number at 303-921-6078. We wish all students a great trip home! Sincerely, Boulder Admin [post_title] => Return Flight Information [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => return-flight-information-57 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-04-26 10:01:02 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-04-26 16:01:02 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/blog/ [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 597 [name] => SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON [slug] => andes-amazon-spring-2017 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 597 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 595 [count] => 105 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 0.1 [cat_ID] => 597 [category_count] => 105 [category_description] => [cat_name] => SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON [category_nicename] => andes-amazon-spring-2017 [category_parent] => 595 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2017/andes-amazon-spring-2017/ ) ) [category_links] => SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON )

SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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Return Flight Information

Hilary LeBlanc,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Dear Spring 2017 Andes and Amazon Semester 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 […]

Posted On

04/26/17

Author

Hilary LeBlanc

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    [post_date] => 2017-04-25 16:52:27
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    [post_content] => 

Definitions of my time here

Mountains: What steals my breath and holds it. The foreground and the background, what my body leans towards and what my feet ache for, the blesser of clear weather and dry fields and the sender of sleet that slides between my shirt and my backpack.

Cities: Hills strung high with a million electric Christmas lights, streets with the smell of fried chicken and warm saltenas and urine, the wrinkled hands of a woman curled beneath herself against the wall, the giggles in the rush of school children heading home for lunch.

Rocks: My walls against the high chill of air, the keepers of ancient blueprints and wealth that runs down stream under a warm fire, the patient grower of creaks and crevices.

Ground: A minefield of beauty, with explosions of purples and blues from small flowers and stacks of lupines, bursts of orange and rusty golds as lichen spreads across the face of a rock, darker colors hide in the shadows of one leaf above another and slide smoothly along the stems of a maiden hair fern. And there are innumerable greens floating quietly overhead in the sky tinged eucalyptus and softly compressing beneath the weight of a moss fringed twig.

Homesick: The feeling on curly roads climbing mountains soft to the touch that makes you want to throw the door open and run back through the high valleys until you find the back porch of laughter and people and potato salad.

Strong: My knees when I jump down upon them in the desert of Maragua, the will of our driver as he pushes his bus past the rocks and holes and up the hill that Jhasmany held his hand out, as if pressed against a wall, to describe, the smile of my host sister as she scrubs windows of a large house that is not hers and sings along to a Japanese love song.

Trails: The ground beneath my feet, the arrow in front that leads me up the mountains at the peak of morning, the grass that slips between my toes, the spaces I remember after the view becomes a little foggy in my mind.

Home: The space in the back of the room that caught my tears to strengthen the floorboards, the tents with 4 pairs of socks, drying for tomorrow, hanging above our heads, the kitchen table with notebooks sprawled open and water bottles with caps hanging off to the side.

Communication: The pointing and showing and constant talking and “no entendo” and sometimes just “no” and sometimes the glitter off an eye and a slight turn and a “si” and a “si, si, si” and a passing of change and a waiting for many minutes for my host mom who sent me around but walked through the middle of the corn and hearing my name between the cobs and hearing “pepsi” and knowing that this is not my name but the laughs that come with it are better than the correct placement of tongue and teeth and there is nothing I would do to change it.

Family: The people that care for me, that grab ahold of the cow rope when it gets a little too sticky and falls from my hands, the people who let me help peel potatoes and the people who suppress their laughs when they have dropped 4 into the pot and I am still struggling with a knotty spot of grime on the first one, the people who will press their hand to my arm when they see my head begin to shake, the people who share a seat on a squished bus with me and the people that scream the lyrics to bad Spanish pop songs.

Celebration: The shirt I have to wring out and hang outside of my pack to dry, the flowered rim of a skirt that bellows to the wind as a little girl spins behind the llamas, the broken pieces, fitted together to recreate an image of history and beauty and creation, the sticky fingers reaching for another half piece of sweet bread.

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Definitions of my time here

Pixie Freeman,Best Notes From The Field, SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

Definitions of my time here Mountains: What steals my breath and holds it. The foreground and the background, what my body leans towards and what my feet ache for, the blesser of clear weather and dry fields and the sender of sleet that slides between my shirt and my backpack. Cities: Hills strung high with […]

Posted On

04/25/17

Author

Pixie Freeman

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    [post_content] => We've rounded out expedition and with that we transfer to our final chapter of this incredible journey. Time is moving so quickly now as we look toward our final few days and I feel like the most important thing to do now is slow down and reflect on the days that have passed behind us. The Maragua trek was our last big adventure in our visit to the beautiful city of Sucre. We spent four days hiking to a crater in the beautiful mountains outside of Sucre. These mountains were unlike anything I have seen before, they looked like rainbows made of rock, and some mornings, the way the clouds settled around them made the mountains look absolutely majestic. We have seen so many different places and terrains on our course that I think I have gotten a full sampling of most of the biomes the world has to offer but this trek was so especially beautiful. One day we got to trek through a dry river bed that cut through bright red rock canyons, and then the next we were hiking through high desert, overlooking the rainbow mountains, and then the final day we were in the crater with a waterfall called the devil's throat, that seemed to drop off the edge of the world. This was one of the most beautiful treks I have ever done. Along the way we also had some fun experiences, as we tend to do always, including a late night dance party at our last campsite. Now, when I say dance party, I mean that a local group of people came from Irupampa to show us a bit of their musical culture, we had been hiking all day and most of the group was falling asleep when the musical crew was ready to go, but they came in their colorful traditional costumes and had many instruments with them. We all thought it was going to be a small concert but as soon as they arrived Lucero, our guide, announced to us that we were definitely expected to dance and "play" the musical instruments with them. All of us kind of exchanged glances as I was handed a bracelet of, I think they were goat toenails, to start playing and Lucero brought me into the circle to start dancing. Soon everyone in the group was dancing and trying to play the various instruments that the local people had brought and we sounded like, well, we sounded like a room full of kindergarteners trying to just make noise, I would say that harmonious is nowhere near a synonym for what we were but everyone was smiling and laughing with more energy than I had seen in the past two days. In some ways it was one of the most awkward but best dance parties I have ever been to and I think of all of the things that happened on the trek, dancing around that room in my pajamas, playing goat toenails, while Don Crispin played a guitar made out of an armadillo, will be one of my favorite memories.
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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON, Trekking and Wilderness Exploration

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Expedition Comes to a Close

Caroline Turner,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON, Trekking and Wilderness Exploration

Description

We’ve rounded out expedition and with that we transfer to our final chapter of this incredible journey. Time is moving so quickly now as we look toward our final few days and I feel like the most important thing to do now is slow down and reflect on the days that have passed behind us. […]

Posted On

04/25/17

Author

Caroline Turner

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    [post_date] => 2017-04-25 08:13:43
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    [post_content] => After almost 80 days, our journey here in Peru and Bolivia is almost over. Today is the final day of Expedition, and everyone will be heading home in a week. Our instructors have asked this to be an authentic Yak, so I'll say that I am looking forward to returning home with great vitality and expectance. Although I have learned many things and made several great friends, this trip has left me the most homesick out of all the experiences out of the country I've had. Not that I regret the trip at all, overall I've had a positive experience. It's hard to put exactly how I feel about this journey into tangible text. And this point in the Yak, I'm really not even sure what to write. To avoid disappointment I would love to make this a page long and full of things people want to hear, but I'm not feeling like either of those are within my current capabilities. I suppose I should give it a shot anyways - so for the last 9 days or so we've been in Sucre, the former (and technically still the) capital of Bolivia. Yesterday we got back from a trek in the surrounding region of Quila-Quila, and everyone is safe and more or less happy. Expedition has been, well, difficult. Perhaps hectic would be a better adjective, but hey, at this point we made it. Anyways, That's all I'll manage to squeeze out of my head today. Apologies, and amiable wishes.

Man, I really don't like writing these bloody posts though.
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SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

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Coming to a Close

Quinn Folks,SPRING: ANDES & AMAZON

Description

After almost 80 days, our journey here in Peru and Bolivia is almost over. Today is the final day of Expedition, and everyone will be heading home in a week. Our instructors have asked this to be an authentic Yak, so I’ll say that I am looking forward to returning home with great vitality and […]

Posted On

04/25/17

Author

Quinn Folks

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