Wednesday, 2 January 2013

A Look Back at 2012, Resolutions and a Thank You!

So this post is going to contain quite a lot, I think. First, let's look at 2012!

There is no doubt that 2012 has been the most memorable year of my life. So much happened! We had the Jubilee, the London Olympics and I spent July in Nicaragua. I never really told you about that, so here's what I did...

I, along with 17 other people from my school, went on a World Challenge trip and spent a month backpacking in Nicaragua, doing a mixture of trekking and volunteering at a school, where we taught English.
In our first week we stayed in Granada, and spent a few days on the gorgeous island of Ometepe, where we did some day treks, went kayaking and visited a waterfall.

Then, we went back to Granada to both paint classrooms and teach for a week. This has to be one of the most rewarding parts to the trip. Even though it was the kids' school break, they came to school to learn English! We also got to spend time getting to know them, and learnt some Spanish ourselves. We camped on a classroom floor and the student's parents cooked meals for us. It was a totally humbling experience: the school buildings, of which there are 8, where made from corrugated steel, and there were over 500 students in the school. 500 students with only 8 classrooms. To add to this, there were only 10 toilets, and the town we stayed in experiences regular 'water cuts', so the children were never guaranteed a drink. You don't realise how scary this can be until it happens- to go to a tap and for nothing to come out is quite surprising to sat the least! When you remember that the weather is a constant 40 degrees C, you realise how dangerous a lack of an essential resource like water is.
Another thing that stuck out to me that week was seeing children wearing TOMS. If you're not familiar with TOMS, it is a charitable shoe brand that, every time a pair is bought, gives another pair to a child in a 3rd world country. When you buy a pair of these shoes you know you're helping someone, but it always seems weird when you meet someone 1st hand that has benefited from this.

Nicaragua is on the San Andreas Fault, and consequently has a chain of both active and dormant volcanoes. This is where we spent our 3rd week, climbing 5 active volcanoes in 5 days! I certainly found this a challenge, but it was definitely my favourite part of the trip, because I have never challenged myself that much before.

And finally, we spent the last few days of our trip on the Pacific coast, at the beautiful town of Las Penitas. Nicaragua is an amazing country, and I seriously recommend it to you all! If you ever go travelling, please consider Nicaragua.

Looking to the past is important, but we also need to look to the future! This means resolutions! I have to admit, I've been relatively unimaginative this year and gone for the 'get healthy' resolution, but I honestly feel like I need to do this, especially after Christmas! I never go crazy with resolutions (partly because I don't have the will power!) so you'll never find me on the 'baby food diet' or an equivalent. In my opinion, it's more important to be confident, healthy and happy. After all, diets aren't really that fun, are they? What are your resolutions this year, or have you decided not to make one? Comment below!

Last, but not least... Total Modisch is close to 1000 views, so thank you to everyone for visiting! I hope what I write is interesting, don't forget that comments are always welcome.

Happy New Year to you all!