This post is part of a group blog and will include submissions from members of Amizade’s Spring Break Service Learning Course in Jamaica. Keep checking back to hear more stories from the group as they prepare for their trip, experience Jamaica, serve with the community, and reflect on their experiences!

As I sit with five other members of the Amizade Jamaica Spring Break group the night before we are supposed to leave, a mix of feelings are surrounds us all. We are nervous, apprehensive, excited, exhausted, scared, and happy. We don’t know what to expect, but we all realize that this is going to be an experience that we will never forget. We all talk about what we can’t wait to do when we get there, how we are going to be able to fit everything in our suitcases, and how early we are going to have to get up tomorrow to make it to the airport on time. We feel rushed, but that feeling is going to be drifting away very soon.

We have heard countless people tell us, “you’ll be on island time,” meaning that when someone tells us they will pick us up at noon, they may not arrive until around one or two. As odd as we find it that this community cannot run on time schedules and deadlines, they find it just as odd that we can. I had the pleasure of meeting our site director, Mr. Matthias Brown, when he was visiting the United States for a few weeks. His carefree attitude and friendly smile was so refreshing. I can’t wait to
meet the community he came from and stay with the welcoming families.

I find that I feel overstressed and overworked way too often in my life than I would like to be. I hope that Jamaica gives me a new refreshing and positive spin on my outlook of life. I can’t wait to learn a new culture and listen to the stories from the community. I am more than positive that I will have countless stories to tell others upon my return.

-Chloe Detrick, WVU