Lots of members of our group spent the night in Terminal 3 at Pearson International waiting for our early morning flight. It was the first time I’d taken the train from Terminal 1 to Terminal 3 and it was pretty awesome. They have a rather slick system — very smooth and you’re allowed to take a luggage cart so it’s quite easy and convenient.
In the wee hours a group of 15 students and 3 staff from Ancaster, Ontario came to check in. Their black sweat shirts all said “D.R.E.A.M.S” and they’re going down to the DR to build a house for a family so where up in the mountains. DREAMS is part of the Hamilton Catholic School Board program and has been going on for about 13 years. It stands for “Dominican Republic Education And Medical Support”. Their are 10 girls and 5 boys who applied to be part of the trip and went through an interview process before being accepted. When I talked with some of them, they all said they were excited about meting the kids and playing games with the. They also said they had never built anything before. What a great experience and an incredible way to make a difference. Way to go, guys!
First time checking in ever where security has asked me to take my CPAP machine our of my suitcase before it goes through the screening machine. Very inconvenient. Also, my sunscreen and insect repellent bottles were too big and got confiscated.Will have to buy more when I get to the DR.
Our bus driver is Pablo and his bus is highly decorated. It’s a blast. We ate sandwiches and drank water on the bus, got to our hotel and had the remainder of the afternoon to get settled in. The Hampton by Hilton is a 5-story hotel in Santa Domingo which has a rooftop pool and a fitness centre. I hope to get a chance to check it out tomorrow. Orientation meeting at 6 and dinner after that which gave us time to get better acquainted and feel more rested. We had a lovely buffet in the dining room where we know even the salads are safe to eat. Tomorrow morning is church, lunch, some time at the beach and an opportunity to see a national park. Will tell you all about it. All is great!