March 28, 2013

Santa Barbara Schools - March 27

March 27th - Mekong Delta

By Kayla:
I woke to a gecko on my net and got the boys, who were loud and awake, to come catch it. It ended up traveling into their room anyways so I cautiously went back to sleep, only to re-wake to the gecko on my net again! After another loud and rambunctious breakfast we went to get catch fish in the mud streams around
the house. I was really nervous but so excited! Getting in the water was crazy! It was extremely muddy and your feet just sunk into the mud like quick sand so trying to move around was difficult. It was really soft and felt good on our skin but there were some scratchy branches in it. I caught the first big fish and it was so exciting.
Everyone was surprised. I caught about two or three other medium sized ones as well. It was so much fun just flopping around in the canal. Lots of laughs. Before going to our rooms to shower we had to rinse off. There was a lady from the homestay helping to bathe us and it was fun but awkward! Finally getting in the shower was amazing. I have some little scratches on my legs from the sticks as battle wounds. We had some down time until lunch. We ate our fish we got in the morning which was barbecued for us. It wasn't my favorite but the boys enjoyed it. The meals here are huge and this one was too! After lunch a few people went to the wifi cafe. We tried an avocado smoothie which wasn't good or bad, just okay. We also tried some new spiky fruit which was actually really good.

By Daniel:
After lunch, which consisted of river fish that we caught ourselves (and the other boys were disturbingly happy to kill), the group went its separate ways. Half stayed at home to relax while the other half ventured to the Wi-Fi cafe to communicate with the outside world.

When we returned from the scrupulous adventure the crew was faced with a quest to visit a local Mekong Delta high school. To get there, we rode our bikes on a narrow path, crossing a bridge made of branches on the way.

We arrived at our destination overheating from the scorching afternoon sun and attempted communication with our Vietnamese counterparts. They were shy at first but warmed up to us with an international volleyball game. We learned that though these people live a half a world away from us, they have the same feelings and hopes and dreams that we do. However, they are less privileged and it is hard for them to achieve these dreams, with approximately 10% of them ascending to a university after graduation.

We were able to take a boat back home while the bros, led by Mr. Hau, searched for Pierce's lost phone (which ended up being in Carter's backpack).

Our after-dinner presentation was traditional southern song and acting performed live. Our friend Owhyn got to sing us a nice ballad about monkeys and something else in Vietnamese, and Mr. Hao, Bea, Pierce and Blake all dazzled us with their singing talents.

This day was filled with some discomfort from the heat, realizing American privilege, and watching a stunning musical performance and was definitely one to remember.

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