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Latest 2019 Madagascar ECS Posts

March 22, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Final Day: The Journey is One I Will Never Forget

Today we all woke up bright and early at 5:00 a.m. to pack our bus and leave the rainforest. However, our bus refused to start and so instead we sat and watched the sunrise over the canopy of trees as the morning fog slowly burned off. During this period of tranquil beauty, our bus appeared to be fixed so we loaded up and set off for another long day of traveling by bus in Madagascar. The drive appeared to be going smoothly, however this was fleeting and soon our bus was struggling up a hill...
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March 22, 2019

Madagascar ECS | What a Crazy Day

Today we awoke as a separated group. The students who hadn’t felt well enough to go on the trek in the rainforest got to sleep in and rest up in the ValBio Research Center, and it was quite the opposite for the students who woke up in the beautiful rainforest. We heard the wake-up call at 5:50 a.m. and knew that we had a long day of hiking ahead of us. We packed up camp and ate a breakfast of French bread. Some of the students and Ms. Hanson got to taste some amazing Malagasy coffee that...
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March 22, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Chameleons and Lemurs

The day of the rainforest finally came, but several students weren’t feeling well. The students who felt sick stayed at the research center and rested for most of the morning. Around 3:00, we decided to all go out for a short hike so that would still see the rainforest. Many of us were sad that we couldn’t be with the group, but after hiking it was clear that we wouldn’t have done well had we all traveled with everyone. We were still able to see chameleons, as well as golden...
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March 18, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Three Perspectives

By Jules T. ‘21: After our morning adventures, we sat down in a standing hut to eat lunch. The women of the village prepared the meal. We had stuffed crab, French fries, and rice as an entree. Stuffed crab is one of Kilvalo’s favorites.  While we ate lunch, the fishermen of World Wildlife Fund talked to us. They taught us about restoration of mangroves. We then got to plant mangroves. They had us stand one meter away from each other in one long line. It was very hot, sweaty, and...
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March 16, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Immersing into Malagasy Culture

As students awoke in their homestays after the first night away from the rest of the group, they began their first full day of immersion into Malagasy culture. Some students’ families decided to take them into the Morondava market to shop for food. Sarina M. ’20 and I walked to the beach with our two eldest sisters, and we taught them to play tic-tac-toe in the sand. As we were getting ready to walk back to the house, we saw about 60 people gathered at the end of the beach. We watched as they...
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March 16, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Memories Many of Us Will Never Forget

A big part of our time in Morondava was being a part of the homestay experience. In a way, I think that it all changed our lives in a drastic or minor way. Since a lot of people had an amazing time, saying goodbye was one of the hardest thing a lot of groups struggled with. Connecting with some of the most kind and amazing people we’ve ever met in our lives felt so good. For the ones who were homesick, our homestays provided us a home-away-from-home, which helped students simply feel better....
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March 14, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Off to Homestay Families

We started off our day by packing and going to breakfast. We split up into two groups for breakfast. Then we all met back up at the hotel and loaded up our stuff onto the bus. Then we walked to La Coraie. We had a meeting about our homestay families. Then about an hour later we got to meet our homestay families. We all introduced ourselves and then had lunch together, where we all got to know each other. We then all went our separate ways and went home with each of our homestay families. Elise...
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March 12, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Antsirabe to Morondava

This morning we woke up very early at 4:30 a.m. to finish packing and prepare for our long journey from Antsirabe to Morondava, Madagascar. Once we cleaned out our rooms, we strapped our gear to the top of our bus calso called a taxi-brussel and set off at 5 a.m. As we drove, we watched the city of Antsirable wake up. Lights of most homes were on and people lined the streets walking to work or setting up their booths on the street. When driving we passed many beautiful and unique...
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March 08, 2019

Madagascar ECS | D.C. to Madagascar

  Today started off different from most days. For me, I was in D.C. in the morning, then I watched a movie and slept for 12 hours on a plane. I woke up to a whole new day in a whole new place: Ethiopia. We got to go on another 5-hour plane ride to Madagascar.   In Madagascar we made our way through the airport, then finally got to step outside and feel the hot, humid air. Our “Dragons” guides, Micah and Sidonie, met up with the group and showed us to the bus that would take us...
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March 07, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Denver to D.C.

To start off the 17-day journey before us, our 18-student group shuffled through the snow into Ms. Hanson’s classroom. It was almost 12:00 p.m. when we loaded all of our gear and (very) heavy bags into the vans to take off for the Denver International Airport. Upon arrival, we hustled through check-in and security and settled at our gate for a quick briefing. Here we went over our schedule and some future assignments. A few moments later and we were fastening our seatbelts on the plane to...
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More recent posts

Madagascar ECS March 22, 2019

Madagascar ECS | What a Crazy Day

Today we awoke as a separated group. The students who hadn’t felt well enough to go on the trek in the rainforest got to sleep in and rest up in the ValBio Research Center, and it was quite the opposite for the students who woke up in the beautiful rainforest. We heard the wake-up call at 5:...
» read more
Madagascar ECS March 22, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Chameleons and Lemurs

The day of the rainforest finally came, but several students weren’t feeling well. The students who felt sick stayed at the research center and rested for most of the morning. Around 3:00, we decided to all go out for a short hike so that would still see the rainforest. Many of us were sad...
» read more
Madagascar ECS March 18, 2019

Madagascar ECS | Three Perspectives

By Jules T. ‘21: After our morning adventures, we sat down in a standing hut to eat lunch. The women of the village prepared the meal. We had stuffed crab, French fries, and rice as an entree. Stuffed crab is one of Kilvalo’s favorites.  While we ate lunch, the fishermen of World...
» read more
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