Location: Los Piedades & La Carpio

Today was a day full of activity and productivity. We started with a nice hour and a half hike up to the hillside just behind our neighborhood. We followed the street for about 5 minutes until we reached the entrance to a hilly grass area where the real hike began. Just a few minutes into the hike, Marcus, the host father of Zoe and Lucy showed us one of the coolest plants ever to exist (in my opinion at least). The plants are easy to miss because of how small they are. Each plant has four perfect rows of oval-shaped leaves that will immediately close up when touched! After playing around with those for a bit, we took some pictures at our first viewpoint. From just a 10 minute walk, we reached an elevation that allowed us to see much of northern, eastern, and western Costa Rica. As we continued the hike, the view became more and more impressive. We were lucky enough to be the first group to hike that area that day, so we got the chance to walk right next to a small group of brown, white, and patterned horses. We took a break at one more viewing point before reaching the highest point of the hike. When we reached the final stop, we had a nearly 360-degree view of a huge chunk of the landmass that is Costa Rica. The breeze was incredibly relaxing, and a few of us wanted to continue the hike up into the misty mountains. On our way back, we encountered a large group of cattle and took a different route back to the house where Anna and I (Evan) are staying to eat our packed lunches. We then enjoyed some brownies made by Raquel and Zoe and, of course, some ice cream. I guess brownie making was hard work because Raquel even tried to take a nap during the party. Coleby, Lucia, Mia, Esti, and Laura went with me to the supermercado nearby to pick up some more ice cream and more ingredients required to bake the brownies. Later, we brought out a speaker and laptop to get some music going for our mini lunch party. Lucy started us off with her DJ skills, and eventually, each of us took turns adding songs and creating playlists for offline listening to prepare for our next long bus trip to the west coast. When we had all finished cleaning up, we left to La Carpio to work on a few different painting projects. The rain did not get in our way! Anna, Lucy, & Laura took charge of repainting the metal bars that protect the windows of the house where we built a wall a few days ago. Raquel, Coleby, and Lucia offered to stay behind to both start and eventually finish the tree portion of the mural that decorates the entrance of la Fundacion. Zoe, Mia, Emme, Esti and I headed to a street nearby with a giant bucket of light blue paint to help repaint a church that has the potential to be re-purposed as a school for the foundation. Now we’re back at Los Piedades and are excited to be going back to La Finca (farm) tomorrow but this time with some of our new friends from La Carpio.