April 12, 2013

Day #9 - Cultural Day

Gateway 2013 HANDS Team:

 

This was a day of site-seeing, being exposed to the beauty of Nicaragua, and learning more about the area.

We left in the morning and enjoyed a beautiful drive through more rural settings. Taking us to a local potter’s home.  We were given a demonstration on how the pottery is made, in a 22-day long process from start to finish.  All steps are done by hand, including mixing the clay (actually that is done by foot, since they walk on the clay and sand mixture to mix it together).  After the demonstration we were given the opportunity to purchase pottery for ourselves.  Many members of the team purchased beautiful pieces and we purchased unique pieces to put into the school sale as well, after we return home.

Next we went ziplining above the tree canopy  This was SUCH a fun experience!  Everyone participated, even if they felt a bit nervous or out of their comfort zones.  We tried everything including the “Super Man” or the “Super Chica” (depending on whether or not you were male or female) and hanging upside down while ziplining.  It was a tremendous amount of fun!

We experienced a fabulous lunch alongside Lake Nicaragua and relaxed while taking pictures and enjoying time together as a team.  After the lunch we went on a boat tour, going past many of the 365 islands that are situated throughout the lake.  Many of these islands are owned by North Americans and house their large beautiful summer homes.  We also stopped by “Monkey Island” in hopes of coaxing “Lucy” (the friendly monkey on the island) to come and visit on one of our boats.  Sadly, she almost joined us, but then decided not to.  We ended the afternoon with a stop in the beautiful town of Grenada where we spent some time walking around and shopping  among the local merchants.

We were not able to stop at the Masaya Volcano this year, due to the activity that the volcano has been experiencing lately.  Unfortunately, the volcano has been quite active and the walk to the top is closed at this time  While we could have stopped at the base of the volcano, we decided against it.  However, while driving past the volcano on the main road, we were able to seethe great amount of smoke that the volcano is emitting. 

We stopped to pick up supper and ate back at the Nehemiah Center, followed by rehearsal time for our skit and songs that we will be sharing in church on Sunday.  Then we had our usual time of devotions and sharing together.  What a great day we had!  We enjoyed seeing more of the beauty and splendor of Nicaragua, and appreciated the time to have fun and bond as a team!  

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