What a great decision it was. Our days at Aldea Luna were filled with goodness. From the incredible people filling our soul, to the cuddly dogs filling our laps, to the delicious meals filling our stomachs, we were overflowing with happiness. If not for having to keep to a schedule who knows how long we would have stayed. Each day was a blessing, and we savored every minute (and bite)!
As the alarm goes off at 7:15, the deep blue hues blanketing the world and dense fog circling the lush mountains tempt us to stay curled in our comfy beds for hours. However, we know a warm and hearty breakfast is awaiting our arrival, so we step out into the mist and begin another day. As we walk down to lodge, the chickens peck at the bugs brought up by the morning dew, while the roosters sound the alarm of the sun and the two horses leisurely wander over the grassy knolls. We converse with the other six volunteers and slowly arouse our minds and bodies with breakfast of hot tea, mandarin infused polenta porridge, and steaming, soft whole wheat bread with delicately cooked orange marmalade. Then, with pants and rubber boots on, machetes, trowels and pitch forks in tote, we head out into the warming day, ready for work in one of the many massive gardens. There are a variety of tasks for us to do: prepare garlic for planting, weed the beds, machete the overgrown surrounding areas, or plant carrot seeds. Yet, no matter the task, we are more than happy to do it as gardening is immensely therapeutic. The morning passes quickly and soon we are cleaning up and preparing for lunch. Sometimes we help out in the kitchen, other times we simply set the table, but all the while our mouths are watering with anticipation of the meal to come. With all eleven volunteers, the owners, Martin and Elizabeth, their son, Matias, and friend, Gerardo, the dining room is bustling and energetic. A hush settles in as the food is served, the explosion of smells permeates the room while the burst of flavors dance in our mouths. Everyone savors every bite of the freshly prepared and delectably sapid vegetarian fare placed in front of them. Seconds, thirds...we eat until we feel we will burst.