Cuba – Friday, January 26, 2018

We were woken by the beautiful sound of Mr. Dipietro knocking at our door at 7:30. We were satisfied with a wonderful breakfast full of citrusy goodness and hearty meat that would help us in our trek through the Artisan markets of Trinidad. Although the bus ride to Trinidad was long and full of sleepy teenagers, we made an incredible stop that woke us up immediately. We stopped along a mountain and we were able to gaze out into the green valleys of the province of Sancti Spiritu, where the city of Trinidad is located. The view was breathtaking and many of us bought postcards (please expect them shortly 😉 )

It was a bit of a rainy afternoon as we bartered our way through the busy market streets of Trinidad. We quickly caught on to the many methods of talking our way through lowering the prices of the merchandise. Can include, but not limited to: speaking French to a native speaker, trading personal belongings for goods, and walking away when the price was not right. We came out of the market with many goods (please expect them shortly 😉 ) and a newly acquired skill. After the marketplace, we had a delicioso lunch/dinner on a beautiful balcony up in the hills.

We returned to the hotel briefly to change and freshen up, before returning to The Center to have a wonderful time at the youth event with our new familia. We sang, danced, and sweated our hearts out. It was so amazing to see the love and joy that these people hold within their hearts. Their generosity is truly inspiring.

Sara – Today was full of surprises. I’ve been accidentally speaking French to people instead of Spanish in the hopes that they will catch on to what I’m trying to say – since the languages are quite similar. I approached a vendor named Joelle today, and accidentally said, “oui madmoiselle.”  I found out that she was a native French speaker, and connected with her. She handed me two bracelets as a gift for me, it is truly amazing to see these people’s generosity express itself through their actions. The church is so loving. Each time we go, we greet each other with a typical Spanish greeting called an abrazo. No one seems to care what you look like as we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. I am so grateful.

Te amo mi familia y amigos

Madeleine – The city of Trinidad was truly spectacular. It seemed as though time had been frozen in the 1950’s, with old Chevy’s lining the cobblestone streets. In addition to this, I also stepped out of my comfort zone and learned how to barter, which is a pretty cool skill. I also very much enjoyed going to the church for the youth event once again. It is so amazing to see other peers around our age in another country and learn to communicate with them, not with words, but with actions. I truly feel the love of God on this trip and I am very glad to have been able to meet great new friends along the way.