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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Santo Domingo, Distrito Nacional, Dominican Republic

Aug 12, 2014 - 8-12-14

I wanted to make one last entry to thank everyone who has been reading about and following my trip to the Dominican Republic this summer! I am now home safely in Columbus after a long day of travel yesterday. I spent the past week with my mom, aunt, and uncle traveling around the rest of the country and revisiting a lot of places that we had gone on our ELAP excursions - Las Terrenas, Cabarete, Puerto Plata, Santiago, and Jarabacoa. Even though it was a little bit harder than I expected at the beginning of the week to leave Santo Domingo,...

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Aug 2, 2014 - 8-2-14

The past few days have been very emotional in many different ways. Since this was our last week of work and our last official week of the ELAP program, it has been full of sadness and goodbyes, but also excitement for what awaits us when we get home. I have been sick this week, so I unfortunately missed a couple of my last work days. Thankfully, however, I was well enough to go in on Thursday for our final day at the community center. They threw us a going-away party with music, dancing, cards, and touching speeches by the children. By the...

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Jul 25, 2014 - 7-25-14

A lot has happened since the last time I wrote - I know that was a while ago! I've been so busy here lately, and it is unbelievable to me that we will be finished working one week from yesterday. I'm definitely starting to realize my attachment to this country and to all of the people in it, and I am not looking forward to having to say goodbye. This past weekend, we went on our very last excursion to San Cristobal. We explored a couple more caves and did a little bit of hiking, which somehow made me extremely sore the next day! It was a...

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Jul 13, 2014 - 7-13-14

This is the end of week 5 in the Dominican Republic - the time is flying by so fast! Some days I am ready to come home, but others I never want to leave. This week has been pretty much the same as far as work goes, but I did end up getting sick on Tuesday night and had to stay home on Wednesday. It was the weirdest illness I've ever had - I came down with a fever right when I was going to bed (I knew I had a fever because the power was out so we didn't have a fan, but I was shivering under a sheet!) and I also had body aches and an upset...

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Jul 6, 2014 - 7-6-14

The last few days have been pretty busy here in Santo Domingo! On Thursday we had a normal day at the community center full of dancing and playing, but we also got to teach the kids the English alphabet for the first time! We will be planning more English lessons in the future that will mainly focus on the alphabet, numbers, short phrases, etc. After work we went to a meeting with one of our program coordinators and the other ELAP students to discuss how our time has been at each of our individual placements. We compared the American and...

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Jul 2, 2014 - Random Thoughts!

I realized that there are a lot of little things that are very important to my experience here but that I do not always think to write about in these entries. Here's a list of some of the random things that I see/experience/think about every day! 1. We live with two almost 70-year-old sisters, and one of them used to be a professional singer 2. The food is amazing here! Rice, beans, and plantains usually appear on our plates at least once a day 3. We live in a very nice part of the city with lots of policemen and medical centers 4....

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Jul 2, 2014 - 7-2-14

I'm finally able to write again after a brief break with no internet last week! Since the last time I posted any updates, a lot has happened, so I'll try to hit the highlights. This past weekend, we went on our second excursion to La Romana, which was unbelievably beautiful. We arrived on Saturday morning and were able to tour around a very exclusive little neighborhood (apparently Shakira has a house there!), where there is also an amphitheater, called Altos de Chavon (also, I unfortunately don't know how to put accents on my tablet). Then...

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Jun 23, 2014 - 6-23-14

Yesterday would have been the perfect day...but then, the power went off JUST as I was falling asleep. Now I have come to appreciate this ceiling fan more than I ever did before! The power was out for about 5 and a half hours last night, meaning that I only got about 2 hours of sleep because it was so hot. It went off for our whole neighborhood, so my friends and I were slightly cranky going to work today! However, it didn't change what a wonderful experience we had yesterday. Sunday morning was our first ESL (English as a Second Language)...

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Jun 21, 2014 - 6-21-14

I can't believe that we have almost been here for two full weeks! Yesterday, instead of working with the kids at the community center, we went to a meeting/workshop with educators from all over the Dominican Republic who work with children in the same types of community centers as we do. It was a very interesting day, and I learned a lot about the purpose of these centers and the work that they do. We did a lot of brainstorming about new ideas for the summer camps, and then we left in the afternoon. Last night, a few of us went out to the...

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Jun 13, 2014 - 6-13-14

The last couple of days have been very busy here in Santo Domingo! Yesterday, we had our first full day at the community center, where we got to meet some of the kids that we'll be helping. It is such a friendly place, and I'm really enjoying it so far. Yesterday afternoon, we went on a tour of how to use most of the various types of public transportation (metro, concho, bus, guagua, etc.) and got to watch some of the World Cup. Later, all of the students went to an outdoor jazz concert in the Zona Colonial, which was our first night out in...

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Jun 11, 2014 - 6-11-14

Today was a crazy day! We started out by visiting the university near our houses where the ISA/ELAP offices are and taking a little tour of the campus. Next, we went to meet our host organizations to begin our internships. I am working at a community center with three other students, and it was a lot of fun trying to get there (which took over an hour!). First, we rode the metro and then got off to take a concho to our destination. Conchos are similar to taxis, but they stuff as many people as they can into the car, and it is a very cheap...

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Jun 10, 2014 - 6-10-14

Today is now our second day in the Dominican Republic! We just got internet access at our house, which is a little bit spotty, but I'll write when I can. Yesterday we arrived at the airport in Santo Domingo at about 11:30 AM, which was a bit of an overwhelming experience, considering that we had only slept for a couple of hours the night before. Thankfully, we got to our host family's house soon after, and I love it here. I am traveling with my friend, Jasmine, from Ohio State, and we are living together with the same host family. We have...

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