Today we all went back to San Simon to finish up our work there. By noon we all went back to the hotel to eat lunch and get ready to go to the beach. The beach was a successfully fun time playing football and rolling around in the sand. By 4:30 we had a period of free time to just relax before dinner. After our dinner we all went up to the grocery store to get snacks. I have had a lot of great experiences today with the community at the church who were helpful and welcoming even though I wasn't able to communicate well we still found ways to have a fun time and laugh.
Today we finished our work at the Episcopal Church San Simon. At the church we touched on a second coat of white paint and some artists worked on the San Simon sign. Some of the boys went back to help with plumbing. They dug a trench, attached tubes together, and filled the trench. After long labor work we cooled off by visiting the beach. We stayed at the beach for a couple hours by playing football and enjoying the salty water. We then eat dinner and went back to the local supermarket La Sirena. I've especially enjoyed working on the trench with the some people of the church. So far, the Dominican Republic has been a hospitable place for us.
Today we finished our work on the wall at San Simon, and our painting of the Diocese Iglesia Dominican Republic shield turned out really well! It took us the whole morning and some of us had to sacrifice some perfectionism, but overall it looks pretty swell. We spent the afternoon shopping for souvenirs around the town shops and finished with ice cream and pastries from the Mariposa ice cream shop. After our sweets, we went to the plaza that was covered in pigeons and we got to feed them with some corn kernels. The birds would just flock to you and flit up to your hands and shoulders if you were holding the kernels and it was really cool. Claudia and I were trading birds that were sitting on our heads by getting them to hop from one of our heads to the other, it was silly but fun!
After working hard the first two days at San Simon with painting and with my group digging trenches and installing plumbing, half of our group went to a different church, Cristo Rey, to start on work there, while the other group stayed at San Simon to finish painting murals on the walls. It was hard work but we got it halfway done and we bonded and will finish tomorrow. Later in the day we went downtown where there were a lot of really interesting sights and shops. We all got unique souvenirs at the shops, many of which we were encouraged to bargain with the shopkeepers in pursuit of a lower price. We had excellent ice cream and did various other fun activities, but perhaps the highlight of the trip downtown was in the center of the plaza where there were quite literally hundreds of pigeons in the area. If you held your hands out with kernels, a couple would land on you, with some even landing on your head. It was a very interesting experience I will not soon forget.