10,000 Reasons why we love Costa Rica

August 20th, 2017: Day 6

We slept in today! For the first time all trip, we slept in past 6 am to a much later 8 am (get at us 8 am classes). We got all dolled up and took a lovely stroll down the road to a local bakery where we proceeded to fill our bags with an abundance of sugar and carbs. While slightly reminiscent of Good Time Donuts, it was fully lit and lacked our favorite donut man. Nonetheless, we were all satisfied (except Matt who couldn’t decide whether or not he liked his pastry). Luke would like to add that he personally enjoyed a fresh home brew of AMCA coffee.
After carbo-loading, we loaded up the car. As we’re sure many of you are on the edge of your seats in anticipation, the rumors are true. El Toaster (our bus) has returned!! It might just be an urban legend, but some say that they saw Heather Randall cry when we heard that it was again our trusty steed for the trip to Los Chiles. Before making our long journey, we attended CED church in San Jose.
We loved church! Everyone was so hospitable, and they provided a translator for us during the sermon. The worship songs were interesting to navigate at first, but we quickly caught on to how many of them were the same chapel songs we sing back at Hope, like 10,000 Reasons and Cornerstone. It was so humbling to be a part of international worship like that, knowing that The Lord is above all worship in every language. We think that many of us will look back on this day when we sing those same songs in chapel when we return to campus. The pastor sent us out with a benediction, reminding us of how we were living out the scriptures written in The Great Commission. Though we’ve already used this word to describe our church experience, humbling is truly the best word that can capture the experience. Being a part of the international church was an incredible experience, one that we will all hold in our hearts for years to come.
Back on El Toaster, we were ready to conquer the world. The City Mall didn’t know what had hit them when us gringos piled in and promptly hit up Mickey D’s, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell. Pizza Hut was a bit of a struggle with the language barrier, and most people ended up with a mystery meat on top of their pizza (the most popular vote right now thinks that it was Canadian bacon). Many of us were pleasantly reminded of how nice it is to have a drink with ice in it, a luxury we had not experienced since our last plane ride. After we explored a little bit and sadly learned that Costa Rican Nike costs the same amount as Nike in the US, we headed out and popped back in El Toaster yet again.
El Toaster never disappoints. It provided us with A/C, laughter, and safe travels. Favorite memories included hot spot interviews hosted by our very own Matthew Douglas (Douggy Fresh) VanDyken, rainbow spotting, and a quick pit stop at a tourist shop with candy. The interviews stuck out as the fan favorite, including questions such as celebrity crush (male & female), what it feels like to be an All-American Athlete (@Frankie @Sydney), and Hope College CFA (Crush From Afar–which has yet to receive any answers). After what felt like the shortest bus ride yet (3 hours), we arrived at our new home for the next two nights. Los Chiles is about to be quite the aventura–that’s adventure, for you non-Spanish speakers. We’re all about to come back fluent. Look out world.
After settling in to our new quarters, we enjoyed a delicious dinner and kicked off team time with some worship–catch us on Spotify, Kust recorded it. We’re getting ready for bed now and are eager to lead two more sports clinics in the morning and a big Sawyer water filter clinic and distribution for families in the community in the afternoon! Buenas noches!

Love from The Squad,
Luke, Heather, and Julianna
P.S. There was a giant frog that Julianna caught in a lacrosse stick.
P.P.S. Heather is getting emotional just writing about El Toaster.
P.P.P.S. We thought Luke deserved a shoutout here too.

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