SALSA PICANTE: The Hot News Mix of EduVenture Mexico
Fall Semester 2004: Sept. 30 Report
By Tim Trezise
(Editor’s note: Climbing For Christ member Tim Trezise and his family – wife Kathy and children Caleb and Joy – are on a full-time mission, leading the EduVenture in Rancho Huapoca, Mexico. EduVenture is described as being “for college students with a passion for God and the outdoors – combining education and adventure with simple living and community development.” What follows is Tim’s report.)
Saludos de Rancho Huapoca! This is a big sampling of "Salsa" as there is much to report. We are slowly moving into fall with hot sunny days (in the 80s) and plummeting temps of clear nights with moonshadows dancing over the sleeping Sierras. We frequently walk out Casa La Junta after dinner into the Master’s art gallery to gauk at His impressive use of retreating light and "water colors." The mountains have covered themselves with a soft yellow blanket of flowers in preparation for the pending cold. Funny how no matter where you go, the birds don’t sow or reap and the beauty of flowers is never out of fashion. We have a lot to learn from the simplicity of creation.
A day-in-the-life of an EduVenturian
We thought it would be fun to give all of you who have been supporting EduVenture Mexico and praying for the Lord’s hand in this program to get a little taste of what a typical day is like here. Typically we don’t have a typical day. What is typical is a schedule that is constantly changing in an attempt to provide quality experiential education and opportunities for building relationships. Living in the present and celebrating the moment with the people around us is a difficult thing to adjust to for college students who prepare, plan and like to be in control of their daily, weekly and monthly schedules. The students are overcoming their frustrations as they adapt to this different day-to-day living.
An "untypical" day starts with a student or staff member leading us all in a time focused on God’s word, followed by a large breakfast of eggs and tortillas or oatmeal. The mornings are intended to be time for two two-hour classes, being any of the six subject areas taught here. At 1:30 we chow down on beans in some form or another with rice or tortillas and of course chiles or jalapenos. Afternoons are for adventures on horses, bikes or hikes, ultimate Frisbee or soccer, homework, Spanish tutoring sessions, doing laundry by hand, or siestas. Dinners prepared by Lupita, are typically eaten with her family (Rafael and their two sons, Uziel and Daniel), giving us all more opportunity for cross-cultural interaction and practicing Espanol. Unlike the typical college schedule of staying up late into the night, there is usually some time for homework under candlelight then off to bed around 9 p.m. Depending on if they will be doing a workout for their training program, they rise between 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. to start it all over again.
Las Amigas Learn the Hard Way
A brief report back to Montreat College from Cass and Martha: “We have been here for about a month as the first students from Montreat College to experience EduVenture Mexico. EVM is an 18-credit program that emphasizes a holistic learning approach that stretches you physically, mentally, and spiritually. We’re here with five other students from all over the U.S. on a remote 18,000-acre cowboy ranch gaining a clearer perspective on the heart of Mexican culture. For those of you who will follow behind us in coming here, we have found that there are 11 essential things that you should know before experiencing EVM:
- Cactus hurts, but tastes good.
- Beans ... it never ends.
- Running class III rapids in the desert is possible.
- Mexicans have a way of making you feel good about yourself even when you’re an idiot.
- Bouldering with scorpions ... how does one rate the difficulty of that problem?
- Castrating bulls: a new experience! Rocky Mountain Oysters taste oddly like tofu!
- Check your sleeping bag nightly for: tarantulas, snakes, mice, spiders, scorpions, tree frogs, etc.
- "Fitness Runs" include "Cardiac Hill" aka K2.
- "Going to town" is a two-hour ride over 25 miles through the Sierra outback.
- A week and a half of six-hours-a-day of anthropology; still wondering what anthropology is anyway.
- Horses are an altogether different breed - we’re used to getting where we wanna go via inanimate objects. Hmmm, not so sure about livestock.“
From Cass: “I am learning about the sufficiency of God’s grace and how it is enough to carry me through all circumstances, easy and difficult, and that in trusting God there comes a peace that surpasses all my understanding.“
From Martha: “Cass and I were pretty sarcastic in writing this, but this truly has been an amazing time and a lot of fun. It has been incredibly hard, absolutely nuts, and every day comes with its own challenges. This experience has revealed to me my own heart – when difficulties come, I cry out to the Lord for deliverance. But He wants me to enter into the difficulty because He plans to do something in it and through it. He has purposed it! (Isaiah 14:24-27) He is much like this wilderness in that though He is not safe, He is good. Solamente Dios! We love you guys and eagerly awaiting our return back home to the 'Treat'."