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Two Dragons welcome the sunrise with an improvised dance atop the Andes. Photo by Ryan Gasper.

Saying Goodbye to Tiquipaya

On November 6th we all woke up in our respective homestays, packed up all of our gear, ate breakfast, and said goodbye to our families for the last time. It was a moment I´ll remember forever. After a little more than 3 weeks living here I had settled into a routine and become comfortable with my surroundings. I memorized how long it took me to walk to the program house and other group members houses. I knew the perfect size rock to carry to scare away the dogs on the road. I´d gotten used to the taste of dust in my mouth. I knew how much to pay the truifi drivers to avoid getting ripped off. I knew the schedule of everyone in my family and placed myself accordingly. By the end of it all I felt as if I was a part of it, and I loved it. Now that we have said our goodbyes I can´t help but reminisce. It´s just like Azar Naifi says, ¨You get a strange feeling when you´re about to leave a place, I told him, like you´ll not only miss the people you love but you´ll miss the person you are now at this time and this place, because you´ll never be this way ever again.¨