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“It is not even 12, and I have already had 6 cups of coffee. My host sister has decided that that is an ample amount of coffee to name my stomach after – she now places her hand on it in passing and says “cafésito” in an affectionate tone.” – Marit Frost in a journal entry, 6-21-15

In my time in Nicaragua I reached 10 cups of coffee a day, held a record of three bowls of arroz marita blog pic 1con leche in one sitting, and got permission to leave my community solely to walk the five minutes to the nearest choco banano vender. Daily. I watched a pig lose its head, attended a Catholic mass, and ate an average of 7 tortillas a day, each the size of a large plate. I hiked for miles in the pouring rain and mud wearing a pair of ballet flats, and watched lightning bugs dance through that same rain from the safety of my porch.

marita blog pic 2Nothing will ever give me as much agency, responsibility, or sense of wonder as this trip did — though calling it a trip doesn’t do it justice. An odyssey, a journey, an experience? No, I’ll just call it life. Because in reality that is what it was for me, and will be for those lucky enough to be at the beginning of it all.

And like real life, AMIGOS isn’t easy, or comfortable, or safe. It isn’t
smooth sailing, it is scary, foreign, and heartbreaking at times. AMIGOS makes you question everything you know, and drops you miles outside your comfort zone. But we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Those scary moments are the ones that turn “camp friends” into ones that will stand by you your entire life, and remind you of your true strength. Those foreign adventures remind you of the incredible diversity within humanity, and how important it is that we are not all the same. And it is those heartbreaking moments that make all the more sweet the embrace of that foreign family who deeply love you. If we never questioned what we know, and if we never left the sparkling bubble that is our regular residence, we would miss out on an entire world brimming with artistry, and bubbling with verve.

I left my comfort zone, and turned my world upside down, and I don’t regret it for an instant.

marita blog pic 3

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