Wonderful 2nd day!
Today we began the day with a Jazz class taught by one of our SMU students at the Univeristy in Panama. It was a great experience to be able to dance with other University dance majors, and just reaffirmed that dance is universal in our world. Though our cultures are so different, and the language barrier still exists, I felt that I connected on a deeper level with these students my age through our movement than I would have if I tried to converse with them. I cannot honestly put into words the amazing feeling I had dancing with these people. They were all wonderful, and I think going to the university will end up being one of my favorite parts of this trip. After a great meal of chicken, rice, vegetables, and most importantly plantains, we headed to Malambo to teach dance to the girls who live there. I am constantly inspired by how receptive these children are to new people and new movement. They don't really care what they are doing as long as they are having fun! It is so rewarding to be able to make a child smile when you help them to get a combination correctly, or even after just giving them a hug or word of encouragement. They love to dance, and they love it even more when they nail the choreography and get praise! I can't wait to see how they remember their dances, and how they improve tomorrow! When we came back to the hostel, we took a walk all around Casco Viejo, and ate delicious pizza for dinner. I am beginning to get more comfortable with the Spanish language, which is definitely a plus. It is probably way too optimistic to say that I will be fluent by the end of the week, but miracles do happen, right? I look forward to our hike tomorrow, taking another class at the university, and teaching the girls of Malambo again. Adios y hasta mañana