Dominican Republic
La Iglesia

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    • Day 4

      El Loro

      May 29, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      Even though we went to bed late, I woke up early and went for a walk along the beach. I almost reached Playa Ballena, when a friend texted me if we wanted to have Breakfast together. So I met her at a restaurant where we started by ordering a coffee. Although we had only ordered „un cafécito con leche de almendra“, they brought us a fruitsalat with papaya, mango, ananas and melon, so we didnt even need to order a breakfast anymore. In the afternoon we went to the beach in front of a place called Loro, where it was so windy that after a couple of minutes laying there we were completely covered by sand. We gave up the idea of sunbathing the whole afternoon and drank a very refreshing campari spritz instead. In the evening I went to the rooftop alone, ate a salad made of the leftovers we still had in the fridge and really enjoyed the time I had by my own.Read more

    • Day 34

      Último Dia

      June 28, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      In the morning we ate breakfast at the Cafecito del Mar. our fridge was empty anyways because we were leaving and we‘ve always wanted to eat breakfast at a restaurant. Afterwards we went diving and did a nice cave dive first. After we dived to our nursery one last time and replaced the missing ropes. Daria and I worked together in a team and attached all the empty waterbottles we used as bouys. It was a really good dive and we achieved a lot, I was happy about it because it was my last dive. On the way back on the motorboat I enjoyed every second of the ride. In the afternoon I still had my Pasola, and Theresa was feeling way better than the day before after her allercig reaction to the sandflies, so I went to pica pollo to grab some food and later on we drove to Bonita with Henrike to eat and drink a last Sangría at the beach. At 3:30 pm I had to go fill up the tanks. I said bye to Daria and started. Then to my surprise, René, Matteo, Henrike, Antoine and even Micka arrived to keep me company and we played cards and drank rum sours. Later on I went to the beach with Micka and afterwards home to pack my things and get ready for one last dinner at Manty‘s place. She cooked the coconut fish for me and I took 3 portions of it. Imat 10 we went to Etno where Micka joined us. The mood wasn‘t really great, nobody actually wanted to dance even though Micka kept animating them because he knew I really wanted everybody to dance and have fun that night. Eventually he drove them home, but I stayed and went to Babylon to dance one last Time with Frenk, my Bachata guy. After the goodbyes in babylon, Micka picked me up and we drove one last time to the hills above Cosón beach and looked at the Stars. Without light pollution it looks beautiful we could even see the milky way. At about 2am he drove me home where Theresa was still packing. We finished at about 3 and went to sleep.Read more

    • Day 2

      First Dive

      May 27, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

      After Theresa and I ate breakfast together, I walked for 25 minutes (morning workout) to get to the diving school where I was welcomed by Daria, the Diving instructor and my fellow volunteers. While the others got ready Daria helped me to pick my wetsuit and diving equipment. I had forgotten how heavy these tanks are and I almost fell when I put it on the first time. When everybody was ready we discussed the plan: we would first count a special type of sea urchins, which unfortunately at the moment are threatened by a local disease, and later on pick up trash from the bottom of the sea. I stayed with Dario throughout the whole dive, who turned out to be italian by the way (so we switched from english, to spanish to italian) so that I could readjust myself and get used to diving.
      After the dive we had a quick talk about the results and then I walked home. Unfortunately on my way it started raining very very much, I needed to hide under a roof. Luckily some other volunteers with a car let me ride with them and drove me to our appartments where I had lunch with Theresa.
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    • Day 26

      Bonfire Night

      June 20, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      Finally after passport problems and missing her flight a couple of days earlier, now it was finally Nina‘s last night and we decided we wanted to go to the beach and make a bonfire. We ate on the rooftop and went to the beach but the spot we wanted to go to turned out to be way to windy, and the only thing we had brought was a lighter. So we moved to another part of the beach where there wasnt any wind and some more light coming from restaurants near by. The others sat down in a circle and wanted to do a fire but were not really sure about it and just sat around. I tried to convince them several times that we could still try and go find some wood but they had already kind of given it up. That‘s the moment I learned that sometimes you just have to do things by yourself. So while the others were just sitting, I started showeling a hole in the middle of the circle and grabbing some wooden sticks on the ground. On friend started helping me, the others were mostly laughing it off and telling me kt wouldnt work, telling me it wasnt possible etc, but that pushed me even more, I wanted to prove them they were wrong and that if you want something you can make it if you put enough effort into this. When we had gathered enlugh wood we build some kind of tent with it and I tried to remember how that used to work. We foind some tissue to that we used to get flames that quickly went over to the wook. 10 minutes later we had a cute little Bonfire and when I told the others that if we didnt look for more wood now it would be off soon, everybody stood up and looked for wood. Eventually Micka came and brought his guitar. So we sat around until 1 am in the morning, playing guitar, singing and listening to songs.Read more

    • Day 14

      Diving, diving, diving

      June 8, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

      I always talk about the diving and our project but never really about how this actually works. Usually we meet at 9am at the diving center, even though normally everybody’s late, dominican lifestyle, that’s how they call it. Then we prepare: I have to get my tank and weightbelt from our tank room. Then I go to the back of the house into the storage room and get my long sleeve neoprene and my shorty, both market wirh blue zippers so I recognize them. After that I grab my fins with the mask already attached to them, my shoes, and my bcd. Before leaving the room i suddenly realize that as usual I have forgotten my regulator, so with both hands already full, I use my little finger to take the regulator with me, because HELL no, i’m not gonna walk twice. Then I prepare the tanks and get everything ready so that the last step, but really only the very last step, is to put on the neoprene. With 35 degrees this is absolute torture but I know that i’ll be thankful for the extra skin later on.
      Then we walk to the beach which only takes about 1 and a half minutes but we have ti cross the street and descend stairs that are even difficult walking on without a 20kg tank on your back and fins &mask in your hand. Once arrived at the beach Rio and I use to jump into the water as fast as we can. Not one second longer will I stand under the burning sun in in utter heat, sweating like a turkey at thanksgiving. After a couple of minutes the boat arrives and we drive to the spot we dive. We “prepare” in the water, which means that we jump into the water with weightbelt, fins and mask, but only put on the bcd with the tank in the water. Then we dive.
      After the one or two dives we drive back to the dive center with the boat, wash all our used stuff and let it dry. In the meantime we start filling up the empty tanks.
      We get dressed and walk home. I must admit, besides the snowy mountains, this is one of the most beautiful offices one could imagine.
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    • Day 33

      Pasolas and Karaoke

      June 27, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      Second last day, still a couple of things left on my bucket list. One of them was eating breakfast at the beach, so I woke up with Theresa‘s alarm, prepared breakfast and took a motoconcho to punta poppy. I loved how calm this beach was during the morning anf enjoyed the time I had all by myself. We did a double dive that morning, one of them was a deep dive I had asked Daria if we could do while I was still here. At this point I really have to sayc I am so so so thankful to have had a diving instructor like Daria. She always did everything so we could dive as often as possible. Aldeas de Paz, the organisation actually only wanted us volunteers to do a max of 3 dives a week. Well with daria we had an average of 6 dives, counting in that weekends are always free). After diving I went to tropikbowl, one pf my favourite places to eat with Theresa because we wanted to plan our trip to Cabarete. In my last post I talked about these sandflies. Well, Theresa had an allergic reaction. Her legs were full of inflamed red dots, that were biting her the whole time, so she couldnt stop scratching her skin. The hospitals here are really bad so all they do when somebody has an ailment, is giving them painkillers, which didnt help her at all. In the restaurant she could handle it anymore, she was shaking, freezing and sweating at the same time, she started crying and I told her to go home. She stayed the whole afternoon in bed but couldnt sleep. I stayed a bit with her but there was nothing I could do except for getting her ice and trying to calm her down.
      Another thing on my bucketlist was to rent pasolas, motos, and drive around and go to some beaches. It took us some time to find a good rental place because some that we saw were really sketchy and we didnt feel comfortable. We found a really trustwothy one with good pasolas at the end. A day of rental including complete insurance costed 20 dollars. They wanted to see our drivinf licenses and I showed my car license. Guess that was enough because they didnt want futher documents, they simply asked if we knew how to drive and if we had driven before. I didnt lie. I had driven one before. For about a minute. After drinking some cocktails. With somebody behind me who took care. But hey, I had driven before. I know all the people reading this are not really proud of me at this point, (sorry mami)
      While we were still at the rental place they gave us each a pasola and explained the basics. Then my big moment came. I obviously had no idea what I had to do but it had to seem like i did. I sat on the pasola, and kicked in the stand. I didnt know a pasola was this heavy and it almost fell to the side. Luckily René was standing next to me and helped me. Then I tried to accellerate but I had forgotten to turn the key to turn on the engine. The guy at the rental looked at the others and asked them if I really knew what I was doing. It was really embarassing but eventually I did it and this stupid pasola started moving. I had some severe difficulties in the beginning especially because in las Terrenas these people drive like crazy but I got used to it fast. We drive to a lookout point which was really beautiful, then headed to Coson for a swim and afterwards drank a sundowner at Mosquito bar in El Portillo. At night there was karaoke at the Garage Bar. First I went to an ice cream place woth Micka and then we met the others at The bar. It was so nice to see how we europeans, usually so strict and controlled, just let ourselves go and sang to songs, danced and enjoyed the night fully as if we were locals.
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    • Day 32

      Jungle Party

      June 26, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      The infrastructure of our Building is decent but the worst is definitely the laundry machine. I promise that each time theresa and I’ve washed our clothes, they came out dirtier than they were before. Since I didnt have many days here left and I really really desperately needed some clean clothes to go on to Costa Rica, I decided to bring my clothes to a laundry and let them wash and dry. So I brought them to this girl at 3 pm, and went to playa Bonita. I went with Henrike, Theresa, Matteo, Rene, Antonia and Micka. (Now you know the names of my friends here too) all volunteers working with me, except for Micka, he lives here. We spend the whole afternoon there, while the others were just lying around and eating, Micka and I walked along the beach and played some ballgame in the warer sirh Matteo and Rene. At 6pm I went to the laundry to get my clean, soft and extremely good smelling clothes. My jeans shorts finally didnt feel like packing paper anymore but like normal jeans textile as they should. In the evening there was a mottoparty at Mosquito and the theme was „Jungle“. I had brought a bandana, for my hair, so I didnt have to buy anything. Before going there we went to groovy garden for a cocktail and then I went to Micka‘s place. He lives in a residencial complex but they have a private rooftop. We went up and talked a bit, looked at the stars, which were very bright that night, and generally are because there‘s no light pollution over here. We saw the milky way and many constellations. Eventually he put on some music and chose a bachata song. He had joined our dance class 2 days earlier so we had already danced together and knew it was a lot of fun. We danced and tried out new moves. At around midnight we joined the others at mosquito. This was probably going to be one of my last real official parties here so I hoped it would be good. I wasnt disappointed at all, the music was amazing, people were dressed up and the vibe was really good. Micka and I shared a frozen strawberry daiquiri. I got a tired after dancing for a long time, so we had a break and I did something I usually never did: i drank an energy drink and it seemes like not drinking the same amount of coffee as at home actually has an effect, because It woke me up right away, actually it did not only wake me up, I was so hypernergetic that we went back to mosquito and danced until 3 am when the party ended and the people started going home. There was an afterparty but we decided not to go. I wanted to walk home or take a concho but Micka didnt let me and drive me home. When I got home Theresa was already sleeping and I noticed that she had fallen asleep half-sitting in her bed with her phone in her hands. It looked so funny I started laughing and took her phone out of her hand and loved some stuff so she wouldnt gwt hurt in case she moved. I still wasnt tired so I did a bunch of stuff I had wanted to do but hadnt done yet, as for example book our accomodation in Cabarete, where we planned on going after Las Terrenas. So I went to sleep at 5am when I finally was tired.Read more

    • Day 171

      Las Terrenas

      April 25, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 25 °C

      Las Terrenas ist ein Urlaubsort an der Nordküste der Dominikanischen Republik. Hier soll man auch gut Kitesurfen können. Las Terrenas ist von einem Riff umgeben, was die Einfahrt in die Lagune nicht einfach macht. Jens steuert und Regina schaut mit Marie vom Deck aus auf mögliche Gefahrenzonen. Wir fahren ganz langsam. Aberwitzige nachdem das Tiefenlot nur noch 70 cm anzeigt, setzen wir kurz auf. Den Felsen haben wir nicht sehen können, da sich die Sonne im Wasser so spiegelt. Danach wurde es dann auch wieder tiefer und wir finden einen guten Ankerplatz. Jens taucht sofort, im sich den Schaden am Boot anzuschauen. Zum Glück sind nur leichte Kratzer an einer Metallpatte am Ruder. Das beruhigt uns. Da es schon später Nachmittag ist, genießen wir den Sonnenuntergang auf dem Boot und fahren erst am darauffolgenden Tag an Land. Nachdem wir in einem nahegelegenen Waschsalon unsere Wäsche gewaschen haben, fahren wir mit den Kitesachen zum Strand. Jens baut den 12er Kite direkt auf und geht aufs Wasser. Regina uns Marie haben ein schönes Schattenplätzchen eingerichtet. Als Jens wieder kommt, geht Regina mit dem 9er Kiteschirm aufs Wasser. als der Wind weniger wird, chillen wir drei noch etwas im Schatten am schönen Sandstrand, bevor wir die Rückfahrt zur Enjoy angehen. Am nächsten Tag flanieren wir die Uferpromenade entlang. Der Ort ist wirklich nett. Die Hotels sind Max. 2 Stockwerke hoch und fügen sich dadurch gut in die Natur ein. Am Meer gibt es Bars, die zum verweilen einladen, da man einen tollen Blick über die Bucht hat. Am Nachmittag Ankern wir in die nächste Bucht um.Read more

    • Day 9

      Wreck Dive

      June 3, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 30 °C

      In order to get our advanced divind license, today we had to dive to an old shipwreck. It was at abput 30metres unter the waters‘ surface and I think it was the deepest dive of my life as far as I can remember, but also one of the most exciting ones. I had gone early enough to sleep the night before, I was feeling very well and everything worked out perfectly. Oh, and I also had my mask again, so that I could see and breath. After diving the guy from the restaurant next to the diving offered me a frozen moca with oreo cookies and whipped cream on top of it (for free), because he knows that I love iced coffee, since I had ordered one a few days before. But unfortunately i‘m not really into whipped cream nor can I eat oreos, so I gave this coffee shake to mirjam and ordered an iced coffee for me:) Today it was our turn to fill up the tanks and we had a lot sp it took us about 2 hours in total, but we played some vard games and chatted and then walked home together. In the afternoon we went to the beach all together and in the evening Theresa and I cooked vegetable pasta:) we also went out but I came home earlier than the others, after I had fallen asleep on a chair at Etno because I was so tired.Read more

    • Day 5

      The Dominicans

      May 30, 2022 in Dominican Republic ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

      Even though the Dominican Republic is famous for the carribean beaches, the exquisite food and the beautiful sunsets, my personal highlight are the people and their culture. My day started off at the diving center: we went on a dive to a coral nursery stations, where we cleaned the corals and the metal structure the reef is built on, with toothbrushes. It‘s basically like gardening under water in 12 meters depth. Later I went to the beach, where a nice dominican girl randomly gave me „Mamancillos“(a typical fruit I had never tried before), because I was just looking at the fruits in her hand. Later on, during a walk on the beach, I met two dominican guys with a coconut. I talkes with them in spanish for a while until they offered me to get me a coconut. So one guy just climbed up a pretty high palmtree, got me a coconat and opened it up for me. Later that afternoon we were invited on a luxuriois katamaran yacht by some very crazy rich dutch people, where we spent the whole day until sunset. They had two private captains who cut us fresh pineapples, we had drinks and we could jump off the boat at the bays we sailed by. You gotta be lucky..
      After our boat adventure we stayed at the beach, met the other guys and talked and talked until it got dark. Then when it was only Rio, Rene and me left, we saw plankton shimmering in the water. We drove home on Rios motoconcho and even though it is only thought for 2 people we managed to fit on it pretty well.
      Before going to sleep I went on a „short“ one and a half hour walk at the beach wirh Rene & then I finally went to sleep after a really crazy day.
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    La Iglesia

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