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Lancaster Country Day School Puerto Rico 2022

March 5, 2022

We woke up early today excited for our journey to Puerto Rico. We loaded onto the bus and napped on the way there. Shortly after arriving at PHL airport we checked our bags in and headed to security. Security was going well until someone in our group got stopped and had to be double checked but everything ended up being fine.

We got snacks and drinks in the airport and headed over to our gate to board. Eventually we got to San Juan airport but lots of crying toddlers on the plane were involved. We got into a big bus and drove about an hour to Big Yellow House which is a four story house situated only minutes from the beach. We unpacked our bags, got settled into our rooms, and then headed down to the beach. After walking across the beach, we walked up a little trail behind the beach to a beautiful scenic outlook. After we took some individual and group photos, we walked back across the beach.

Once we arrived back at Big Yellow House, we split up into four teams to divide different shares of work (a clean up team, a leader team and two other teams who would become the clean up team and the leader team the next day).
We played volleyball and soccer, hung out, and took showers before eating a delicious dinner of fried chicken, rice with vegetables, ribs, and salad on the spacious deck.

After dinner, we came up with our Community Contract and officially signed it. We learned when lights out time would be (the chaperones decided on ten o’clock at the latest) and what our schedule would be fore the next day. Then we hung out, played cards, and got ready for bed after an exciting and exhausting day. The beach, the outlook, and dinner were most people’s favorite part of Day One in Puerto Rico. We cannot wait for tomorrow!
– Lucy L.

March 6, 2022

We started our day off with a great breakfast including sausage, eggs, ham, and pancakes. We then packed for our day, and left for our tour of Old San Juan. We visited many important monuments like: museums, churches, forts, and statues. After that, we got lunch at a traditional Puerto Rican restaurant. We had chicken, rice, tostones, and beans. We made a few quick stops for souvenirs.

Around 2pm, we got back on the bus to go home to the Big Yellow House. We spent a few hours at the beach swimming, relaxing, and having fun. We came home, freshened up, and had some time to hang out.

Then, our dinner arrived and we had, chicken, rice, pork, beans, potatoes, and avocado. Our salsa instructor soon arrived and we had so much fun learning the basics. We finished off our day with a rose, thorn, and bud, and got ready for our next adventure!

– Zareus, Teagan, Remy

March 7, 2022

We started our day off by going to a lake. It was a good experience because we learned about the lake and how a lot of people depend on it for fresh water. Then, we went to a place where a very nice lady named Mika greeted us and led us on a journey. We learned how to dig up volcanic clay and use it on our skin. We all were very uncertain about putting it on us at first but ended up having a lot of fun. We jumped into the water to wash off our skin, and then went to look at petroglyphs. We all found them very interesting because of how long they could stay there on the rocks. After that, we ate lunch and cleaned up a bit. We formed a circle and expressed what we were grateful for, which was important because we need to show gratitude to the people who shared their space with us. We stopped at a waterfall on our way home, and then went to the beach for a while.

When we were home, after dinner we started watching a documentary on Puerto Rico which was very entertaining until the power went out. We packed and are ready for whatever comes at us during our service day tomorrow!

– Kaylina, Andrew C, and Andrew V

March 8, 2022

As we woke up with no power with tired faces, positive attitudes, and pancakes on our plates, we mentally and physically prepared ourselves for the service project. We were originally dreading the project because of the heat and lots of work, but upon arrival we realized that the only way to get the job done was to have fun with it and hype each other up. We took a short hike to an old abandoned house made in the 1890’s to begin our project. Our main goal was to clear around the house full of shrubs, bushes, grass, and trees to make room to walk around this future historical monument. In little time and lots of “slaying”, teamwork, and guidance from Carlos and Ramon, we cleared out the foliage around the house. We had a sense of pride in ourselves for getting such a difficult task completed through teamwork and high energy.

We then came home to our new house located right on the beach. In our opinions, this house was much cozier and nicer than the big yellow house.  Our bedrooms were bigger, the bathrooms were way nicer, and the overall design of the house was more enjoyable for us. We got settled in a went to relax on the beach for about two hours. We rode waves, socialized, and had fun. We then came home to the amazing dinner that Talia brought us which was fried chicken and pizza. How yummy. After dinner we sat around the house and chilled. We tried to watch the documentary but that failed yet again. We closed with a gratitude circle and talked about getting ready for our trip to our next adventure: A hike in El Yunque.

– Colin, Delaney, and Lauren

March 9, 2022

We woke up today in our new house, Casa Coral and quickly got ready to go on a rainforest hike. We hiked up a muddy trail to a small water hole where we resumed our hike (this part of the trail was not muddy). Our physical strength was tested when we had to climb up steep rocks and on slippery roots. Then we slid down a natural water slide, jumped off a rock, and swung on a rope into the water. After we walked back to the bus (with shoes and legs covered in mud), we boarded the bus and went to into town to a small shopping outlet. We shopped for souvenirs, ate lunch in a small restaurant, went to a beautiful beach with crystal clear water and barely any current. After we arrived back home, we played cards and then we went on a relaxing paddle board tour which started in a lagoon right outside Casa Coral. After the tour, we took showers and ate a delicious dinner. Everyone was really tired, so we went to bed. We can’t wait for the snorkeling trip tomorrow! Buenas Noches!

– Lucy, Ben and Lianne

March 11, 2022

This morning, we went out to the beach early to see the sunrise. Later, we went surfing for a little bit. Even though we were all really tired, we were able to pull through and have fun during it. We went out to eat to a restaurant which was also fun. It is nice to see how the food is different in Puerto Rico. A lot of the food is kind of similar, but some of it is stuff we have never heard of before. There is a lot of chicken and rice that is served here in Puerto Rico. After having more free time in the afternoon, we ate dinner and then went kayaking. There were bioluminescent lights in the water which made our experience very cool. The guy who led our kayaking trip explained how the little planktons in the water worked. It was interesting to learn about. When we got home, we got a surprise pizza party for our last night in Puerto Rico! It was very yummy! Tomorrow, we will be heading back home. All of us are exhausted and want to sleep in our own beds, but on the other hand we are going to miss this island so much. We had so much fun trying new things, playing Uno during our down time, and getting closer as a group. Overall, this was an amazing trip and we made many unforgettable memories that will stay with us forever. Thank you to everyone who made this trip possible for us! We appreciate it so much. <3

– Kaylina, Andrew V, and Andrew C

March 12, 2022

Hey! It’s Remi. I want to end off our string of blogs with thanking our GW leader, Talia for everything that she has done for us and the opportunities that she has given to us. I am so beyond grateful for the connections I have built and the experiences I have had during my stay in PR. I am never going to forget the people I have met and the places I have gone. I think that I can speak for everyone when I say that we may be leaving, but we did good in our service project and had so much fun while doing it together. I plan to come back soon and make more memories, but for now, adiós!!

Hey, this is Kaylina! I would love to thank everyone who helped us along the way during this trip. I am so thankful that I was able to be a part of this amazing experience. The salsa dancing around the island, watching Mr O fall off his paddle board 70 million times, and other unforgettable memories resulted in a lot of crying on our last day of the trip. The last couple of people that I would like to thank for making this trip so memorable are Talia, Mrs. Brubaker, and Mr. O’Gorman. This trip wouldn’t have been as fun if they weren’t here to constantly encourage us and always be here for us. I am so excited to see what we do in the future and I love this group so, so, so much.
Much love

– Kaylina