Our group intern trip to Bacalar

~ By Stephan

On the weekend of January 29th through the 31st, I and most of the other Volunquest interns went on a trip to Bacalar as part of the intern incentive program. On Friday afternoon the group boarded the bus to begin the three hour drive and mini adventure to Bacalar. Upon arrival, the group checked into their respective cabanas which had been reserved for us by our Director, Kristen.

That evening, our group of 12 enjoyed a delicious meal on the terrace of the property. We met three new interns, John, Monica, and Gael who came to us from Colorado, Nebraska, and Canada respectively. We enjoyed a wonderful evening in which we all shared our experiences and feelings regarding our classes and students. We also shared stories of seeing “our” kids out and about around town and how they shout out to us, “Teacher!” in excitement. The evident joy in our students and our love for them was echoed throughout the evening by each of us.

stephan-1On Saturday we took a boat ride around Cenote Azul which had three cenotes and each ranged from 70 meters to 95 meters. We were able to stop at one point and jump into the brilliant blue water. It was cold, but it felt wonderful. There was a peaceful, almost magical feeling to this area. Swimming in this body of fresh water surrounded by beauty and nature is the best feeling in the world. I wish I had had a camera with me to try and capture some of the beauty.

We all enjoyed our swim and eventually came to the end of our ride and landed on a sand bar where we were able to rub our bodies with the white grainy sand. The sand exfoliates and softens the skin, but is not very pleasant to the nose. It’s a little hard to describe, but I suggest everyone give it a try and have a little spa treatment because who doesn’t like soft skin? We went on to enjoy the afternoon view and the sense of peace and relaxation that one can only get from being surrounded by nature. We later went on to enjoy a water park and kayaking. It was my first time kayaking and I was a little anxious, but I want to believe that I caught on quickly and am a natural. At least that is the story I’m sticking to. It was a nice little workout on the shoulders and the most incredible experience! Needless to say, we had a fun filled day that left us exhausted and ready for a siesta.

After siesta time, we all headed out for dinner in Chetumal to a pizzeria that Kristen knew about. The pizzas were nothing short of outstanding! We had shrimp pizza, margherita, cheese and salami, and gorgonzola pizzas to name a few. I will admit that I made a pig of myself and ate 10 slices. It was all so delicious! Afterwards, we had an opportunity to explore Chetumal for about an hour and a half which gave me an opportunity to walk off the pizza before calling it a night.