I can say that the trip was amazing and hectic and well worth all the effort to get there.
We spent 5 days working with the Audobon Nature Institute, The Mission, and Villalobos and I loved ‘almost’ every minute of it. The work was very hands on and hard over time. The group never shirked from a job. I did a lot of photography on the trip and took pictures of everyone as we got jobs done. I have 10 rolls of black and white film to develop once I get a chance since school has started and classes are hectic.
I did have to learn my own limits with what I can physically do over a period of a week but I found out I can do more than I originally thought. I need to learn how to step back when there is a leader in a group and allow them to make decisions. I learned more patience for myself and that my short comings have little to do with my desires and a lot to do with my past injuries. I am not 19 and should not base how much I can do on our younger members.
Over all, the experience was amazing. I can’t say that enough. Hearing how even something that seems tedious and generally pointless is a task that would have taken staff members away from more drastically important tasks and we knocked it out in a day. Hearing how grateful the people at the mission were for a few extra hands so that they weren’t scrambling to get things done and could work on other tasks. Hearing how the dogs at Villa Lobos all have amazing personalities and traits and the handlers know them so well that they cna tell you what the problem is if a dog isn’t wanting to walk. Each little thing we did was appreciated and while it felt like we didn’t do enough in some places, even that little bit was more than they expected.