Volunteer Testimonial: Saying Goodbye to Guatemala

Buena Onda Volunteers Thank You

By William Deboer, Buena Onda Volunteer

Hello everyone! I hope all of our readers are doing well and I am glad to have the honor of one of our last logs for the trip. Today started off more relaxed than most other days so far with all of us waking up around 06:10-06:15. We all got showered and dressed and headed down to Violleta’s for breakfast. Today’s breakfast was delicious and consisted of french toast, bananas, and strawberries.

After breakfast, we all said our goodbyes and hopped on our buses with our mentors. My group and our mentor, Edguardo, headed towards Santa Maria to the Jardin de Amor school to finish up the work we started there. Today we were solely focused on completing the staircase area with an under the sea theme. My group and I painted plenty of pictures of fish, seaweed and other types of underwater creatures. As we were working on the staircase a few members of our group went upstairs and painted clouds and birds on the light blue wall that was leftover. Soon after we had completed the staircase and finished up the final touches around the school, the teachers brought the kids out from class to play a few games with us. We played a game where each of the members in my group were paired up with about twenty kids and had to hold hands. Then we had to maneuver a hula hoop through each of our arms without letting go of anyone’s hands. This was a lot of fun and made us feel like we were having a considerable impact on these kids.

After we had finished playing games with the kids we were brought up to their computer room. When we were there we were treated to a traditional dance and were given pictures of us with the school’s principal Julio. After we had gotten our pictures and had given all the kids hugs goodbye, we thank Julio for allowing us to help out the school and we headed back down the mountain towards Antigua for lunch.

farm buena ondaCaptain Lennon had a special treat in mind for us as this was our last lunch in Guatemala, he brought us to a restaurant called Caoba Farms. Everything that was served at the restaurant was either grown organically at the farm or imported from a friend of the owner Alex. The place was a figurative Garden of Eden and truly was massive in size. I ordered a buffalo burger that came with greens and a strawberry banana smoothie. Everything we ordered came with edible flowers that actually didn’t taste half bad! After we had placed our orders and eaten Captain Lennon said a few words thanking Tatiana the owner of the Purpose Hostel and the three mentors that had accompanied us to all of our sites. Upon return to Antigua a few of us students went out and got a couple of cups of coffee from the nearest cafe and returned back to the hostel to relax for the night. A few of us went out after to the market area and got some final gifts for our families and loved ones.

This trip has been extremely eye-opening and I can’t wait to share all the memories that I have made here with my family and friends back at home.