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Volunteer Voice - Expect The Unexpected

By Emma Burton 5 years ago
Categories Quepos

When I decided that I wanted to spend some time this year volunteering in Costa Rica I really had no idea what to expect. I signed up for a six week program, knowing very little about the country and speaking absolutely no Spanish. After spending a month working on the project and living in Manual Antonio my advice to anyone who is in the same position as me would be: expect the unexpected.

To give you a taste of what I have experienced in these past four weeks; I have walked alongside a sloth on my way to the beach and I have been a suspect for the murder of a teddy bear at our fantastic murder mystery night. I have been offered a slice of cheesecake from the pocket of a child; I have had an egg cracked on my egg because apparently that’s a birthday tradition here (although it was not my birthday). I have watched a classroom be transformed into a hair salon for the afternoon and watched the locals (and volunteers) stop by for a free haircut. I have spent a Sunday night dancing around the house to a Spanish children’s song, which I then performed in front of the whole school whilst dressed in a ridiculous costume. I have gone to the local shop in the pouring rain dressed in a toga and I have watched monkeys jump through the trees with bananas just in front of our balcony. And tomorrow I’m painting a seascape mural on a large fishing boat for the Independence Day parade.

I can’t wait to see what weird and wonderful things the next two weeks bring!