The worldwide Augustana College experience

The Great Huts were that GREAT

Driving to the great huts was an adventure to say the least. The road went from a nicely paved highway to practically a single lane road with as many pot holes as the roads in Rock Island. Yet, Dr. Egan got us to the Great Huts in one piece. My first walk through of my hut left me speechless. It was absolutely amazing! The view was gorgeous, the space we had in our place was awesome, and the fact that everything was just in the outdoors was spectacular. Our shower has to be the best part of our hut. It is in the shape of a boat, with no curtains, and looks straight out into the sea! Yes, when I take a shower I can see the waves crashing into the rocks just down below is where our beach is located. Yes, if someone was on the rocks diving off into the water, they could see me in my shower. But no, no one has seen any of us yet. We also had a outdoor bar connected to our hut, but no drinks… We had two chairs made out of stone looking out over the ocean, which I am currently on writing this blog. Our hut was connected to some of the other huts the girls were staying in as well as a mini pool that looked out over the edge as well. The views from all of the huts were amazing and just left me speechless most of the stay.

Yet, the huts were not the only thing that we did while staying in Boston Bay. We played dominoes with the locals at night, went to the Blue Lagoon (it was the bluest water you’ll ever see in your life), went to Reach Falls and had a great lunch, and went to some local dancing and parties at night. It was unbelievable everything that we did. The Blue Lagoon and the villa we stayed in was absolutely amazing. Chef Joseph that cooked us food was the man! His food was amazing to the last bite! Everything he made got eaten by all of us. There wasn’t a drop left after dinner from what he made. The lunch after Reach falls was just as good as chef Joseph’s! The food in general has been amazing for every single meal. There had not been a meal yet where I went hungry or was like I don’t like this. It all has been so good it has been unreal. I am looking forward to the Boston jerk tonight for our last night in the Great Huts. I’ll let you all know about it at the end of this post. But first let me talk a little more about playing dominoes and the Reach Falls which have been my favorite things so far for the Great Huts stay.

Playing dominoes with the locals has been an experience in itself. Even though it may be hard to understand sometimes, it was great. It amazes me how well they can count the dominoes, know what you have and what everyone else has. They tell you what to play and it just blows my mind. Yes I know there are only 28 dominoes, but still you have to do a ton of counting in order to figure out what everyone else has. Then on top of that strategically play the right one and help your partner at the same time. It’s a game that cannot be picked up in 2 days but rather 2 years. I had the honor to play with gentlemen named Donte who taught me a different version called French dominoes. I love this way to play now even though it requires even more counting that the original way. The whole point scoring system for it is very elaborate since it’s not just playing to 6. You want to have the lowest score like golf. And playing wrongly results in more points added to your score in which the first person to 100 loses. It was awesome and he was such a great teacher of it. It was a new taste of Jamaica that I was getting which was amazing. The entire stay at the great huts was amazing and fun filled, yet the last night was the best of all there.

At this point I had tried the Boston jerk chicken by now. Let me tell you, my mouth has never been so on fire before in my life. It was incredibly hot and spicy, but in a good way. It wasn’t painful to eat the delicious meal, but we did have to but a bottle of the guava juice from a street vendor in order to keep all of out taste buds functioning. The extra pepper that was on it was the key to the spice but made it all the more memorable. Sheriff was the name of the man who owned the jerk center we got that meat from and he was a kind hearted man who loved to make others happy. He was able to put a smile on your face with just his smile alone. Another man that had the greatest vibes flowing from him was Rodger. He was the owner of the bar that we played dominoes at every night. I did not get the privilege to talk with him that night but Joey and Michael did. They said it was one of the greatest experiences that had happened on the trip to them. If I could go back, I would go listen to that conversation that they had about fatherhood. But overall, this part of the trip had been great. It just amazes me that each day can get better and better. When I go to sleep at night I know that tomorrow will be a new and better day. In the USA I don’t feel that way. I dread going to class, work, or practice. Here I never felt the dread of going anywhere. I have a good feeling that this feeling will continue through to the next week in the Alpha school. If each day keeps getting better and better, I can only imagine what teaching in that school will be like. I am beyond excited to start next week. It had been fun being a tourist more or less for a week. But this is the real part of the trip, the reason why we all picked this study abroad trip. Now it’s time to enjoy the mountain ride/ view and imagine what teaching will be like next week.

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