Location: Andes Mountains
Waking up this morning felt surreal like I was still in a dream. After a few minutes of being awake, I realized that I was actually in the Andes mountains, with amazing people, preparing for an adventurous day. Not only was the breakfast incredible (again), but the rest of the morning was also very cool because we all gathered into the back of two pick-up trucks to go to the local market. I think just being in the back of the pick-up truck with everyone driving through the mountains brought us closer together. The views of the rolling hills and mountains were incredible. When we arrived at the market, I gained a whole new view of Ecuador. Seeing all the stray dogs and people vending for their living made us all realize how happy anyone can be in any situation because we never saw anyone complaining. After the market, we got dropped off at the top of the Quilotoa volcano crater. After marveling at the crater, we started our hike back to the Black Sheep Inn. We spent the rest of our day hiking and gazing over mountaintops with beautiful views and winding through ravines. When we were about 10 minutes away from the hotel, we stopped and helped a local man, Andres, organize books for the community library. This was a good experience because everyone had such a positive attitude even though we had just accomplished probably the hardest hike of our lives. After we were done with our rewarding hike and our service in the library, we relaxed together until our mouth-watering dinner at 7. Then we all went to the yoga studio and ended the day perfectly with an awesome conversation about how our day was and sharing favorite parts of it, laughing hysterically with each other, and experiencing major bonds with each other.