Day 8: Notre Voyage à Travers le Lac

Day: 8

                Today we were planning to take a boat across the lake to go zip lining in a nature park on the opposite side of the lake in the morning. Instead of this we took three boats across the lake and went zip lining in the afternoon.  We met up at central park at 7:45, a reasonable alarm compared to yesterday, but many people still had sleepy eyes. We walked down to the docks from the park. As we approached the park I noticed the engine of our boat had no cover on it. Our boat was also not docked on the main pier, but a sort of thrown together group of logs to the side. Both did not bode well for the success of our journey. We all filed on to the boat, got comfortable on our plastic benches. Around 300 feet into the trip the engine started to sputter, but then started to work again. As soon as the engine pushed us a reasonable distance away from the shore it decided it had done its job and cut off. Everyone sort of stared at each other unaware of what was happening. After our resident Spanish speakers told us that the engine had broken and that we had to wait for another boat to come help us there was a wave of tired moaning. A few minutes later, not long because we were close to shore, a second, and larger, boat arrived. The new captain tried to help fix the engine. It wouldn’t work so they just put us on that boat and continued on our way. Around 15 minutes later it was like the Mayan gods frowned upon us. The clouds parted and a ray of light came down from the sky and struck our new boat, breaking its engine. Now we were really in trouble, we weren’t by the shore anymore; we were in the middle of a vast lake with no engine. At this point a lot of kids started to lose a bit of composure; there was a solid amount of swearing and complaining. One could say being trapped on a small boat in a rough lake with nausea and diarrhea is not the best situation for anyone. After a solid 15 minutes our savior in an even bigger boat arrived to pick us up and finish our journey. At this point we assumed we would arrive at the other side of the lake in a 200 foot super-yacht. Once we got to the other side we pulled into a dock only to be told we couldn’t dock there. So we headed back into the lake and boated further along the coast to the public docks of a nearby town. From the town we took a shuttle to the nature reserve and finally got in line for zip-lining. We all got our gear on quickly and had to take a tiring, but beautiful, hike up the side of the mountain. The zip-lines were the longest I’d ever been on. But aside from the view, the best part was that they had pre-stationed an operator at each individual line so you didn’t have to wait for 25 people every time. These operators both expedited the process and exponentially improved the fun of the process. After a good 10 lines we were done and headed back to the boats. The ride back was thankfully uneventful and quick. After we arrived back in San Juan we went home to our homestays for lunch. After lunch we met back up at the school and taught the younger kids how to use the computers + RACHEL. RACHEL is the software/network that includes educational games and khan academy. IN our classes we focused on learning English colors and basic addition/multiplication. When school ended at 6:00 we all headed home for dinner with our families.

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