Going Beyond Your Comfort Zone

Day 8: January 3rd Welcome to Camp Agustin Turner!

We began the day bright and early to get packed and ready for camp. None of us really had an idea of what to expect when it came to camp so we were somewhat anxious to get there and see what it was all about. The drive took about two hours from Valparaiso in which a lot of us were able to catch up on some sleep which surprisingly I was able to sleep with all of the very intense switchbacks. The bus was full of our group, Francisco's family, the family that we worked with on the house reconstruction project from Las Canas, and the Germans who are staying at the YMCA with us in Valpo. The camp is high on a mountain which made for an incredible view as we got closer and closer. 

Upon arrival, the heat had definitely settled in the air as we got our bags unpacked and beds made. I also want to mention the very large tarantula that they immediately brought to our attention when we were settled in our rooms.

There is no internet connection here at the camp which means three days of no texting, social media, etc. 

I'm pretty sure we ate about four times in a matter of six hours. We have discovered that eating and dancing are both just as important as the other. :) Upon arrival to camp we swam in the pool a couple times...the water was pretty chilly but it definitely felt good with how hot it was outside. It was a soothing feeling to be cooled down by the water.

Before dinner (which was at 9:00, we eat meals a lot later than what we do back home) we played all sorts of leadership, team building, and get to know you games with about 40 people. It was interesting because of the language barrier. For example, during the "telephone" game, it was very difficult to understand what they were saying when we had to pass the phrase on. It ended up being more comical than anything. It was also interesting when we had to put ourselves in order of age and then order of birthday. Most of us knew how to speak the Spanish months and numbers but it was fun to teach each other the other language. This is something we continue to do here at camp and in Chile in general. We enjoy learning Spanish and they enjoy learning English.

We also took a walk up the mountain to see the stars. The stars are so bright up here in the mountains and do not even compare to what we see back home in the city. I've also never seen the moon shine so brightly before.

Day 9: January 4th

Good morning from Colliguay! I can't get over how beautiful it is here. We found ourselves sitting on benches in the shade this afternoon just taking in the warm sunshine and soaking in the moment. What a blessing to spend a few days with a great group of people on a beautiful mountain. It has been a challenge getting used to the fact that there is no internet access and limited supplies for activities; however, that's the beauty of it. We spend time outside, at the pool, playing ping pong, going to the river, using what resources we do have for fun activities and being creative. We did a devotional today led by the Germans who are are in Chile for volunteer work.

We also worked on tye dying with the kids and adults.

We had sort of a "casino" night that involved all sorts of games. Blackjack, who wants to be a millionaire, dominoes, UNO, and more. Our group held the event and the Chileans loved it. Following the casino night we all gathered around the campfire. At the end we expressed that we would all be leaving a piece of our heart here in Colliguay. We have made some incredible memories and each day is filled with all sorts of activities.

The downtime we do have is very relaxing especially here at camp where you can get fresh air and soak up the sun. It will definitely be missed. Some of us helped finish off the tye dye shirts and also make empanadas for dinner. Having to cook for about 40 people is quite the task but with some Chilean hip hop, we had fun in the process and accomplished our goal. We did repeat after me type of games around the campfire in which mostly involved dancing, imagine that. ;) It was so much fun to see the combination of our dancing with the Chileans. There were a couple of games that resulted in our group being tricked and ending up on the ground in the dirt which they thought was hilarious because we really had no idea what was coming. The night ended late after 1 am. 

Day 10: January 5th

Buenos Dias! :) This morning was made up of a lot of free time in which some of us took advantage of to go to the river just up the road. As soon as we got there we were in awe of it's beauty. A heavenly place. The rope swing was a favorite by far. Most of us swung on it multiple times each time even more fun than the last. Definitely an adrenaline rush! The water was warmer than the pool we had been swimming in and was so refreshing. It's hard to believe our time at camp is almost done. We have been blessed with such beautiful weather and made once in a lifetime memories. And not to mention, we survived the whole no technology feat. ;)

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