The Costa Rica trip was organized by Ms. Espinosa, North Hollywood High School's Biology and Environmental Science teacher. The trip took place during Spring break for 8 days. Last year Ms. Espinosa had organized an Iceland trip and because of its success, she decided to go on another trip this year. According to the students that attended, it was exciting to see the extent of nature, including the tropical rainforest with all its plants and animals, interacting with students of other grade levels, and experiencing the culture of Costa Rica. I have interviewed Heather Jung, a freshman who attended the Costa Rica trip. Here is our Q&A:
Q: Hi Heather! I know it has been a while since you were on the trip but would you say you still remember it? A: Yes! How could I forget! It was definitely one of the most memorable trips of my life. Q: Great! If you had to choose the most memorable moment of the trip, what would it be? A: In the hotel lobby room, a group of us played a game called Code Name. I know this answer probably isn't what you expected but this short time was memorable to me. It helped me to feel more comfortable with upperclassmen. I would also like to add that I believe I became closer with the teachers on the trip as well. Q: What types of activities did you do there? A: We swam a lot. Mostly the ocean but we also swam under a waterfall. We went scuba diving and even saw a sea turtle! We went to a spa that was built around a hot spring. We saw what the town life was like, went on coffee and chocolate tours, and even milked cows! Honestly, I can go on and on but there is just so much we did on this trip.
Q: Is there anything you noticed about the culture that was different from ours? A: Tourism is definitely a big part of the culture there. The tour guides were very passionate and excited about their job which was nice to see. It was as if the guides were more excited about the tour than us haha. Also, they knew what they were talking about. They didn't just read from a guide book but instead knew all the information by heart which made it more captivating. Q: How was the food and stay? A: I liked the food because it was mostly a rice-based diet which I was comfortable and used to. The stay was comfortable but not out of the ordinary.
Q: Finally, what would you tell students who are contemplating whether to go on a similar future trip?
A: I believe the most important thing about these kinds of trips is the interactions with others. Because you are stuck with the same group of people, encourage your friends to go and keep good relations with everyone else. If you aren’t willing to have an open mind and interact with people you are uncomfortable with, I suggest reconsidering going. But if you feel comfortable with talking to everyone and being open-minded about the food, the tour, and thinking about the group as a whole, I would say go for it! It was an experience I will not forget and you have so much fun every day you are there. I'm sure if you end up going you won't regret it.
Q: Thank you so much for letting me interview you! A: No problem! I’m happy to share my experience with others.