Gappers in the Field

My immeasurable string of pearls

The following post was written by Global Gap Year Fellow, Amelia Laursen.

November 11, 2022

Isabela, Puerto Rico

When I was preparing to move to Isabela (a small surf town on the north shore of Puerto Rico), I facetimed my mentor, McCarty, hoping for some validation and advice on this huge decision. McCarty is a fellow gapper who also lived and worked at Horses of Hope, my new home and a small therapeutic riding center and horse rescue nonprofit.

I asked her what memory, above all, was her very favorite from living in Puerto Rico. A trip to a waterfall with new friends! A hike to the top of the world in the El Yunque Rainforest! An all-nighter spent bar hopping through Mayaguez! A boat trip to Desecheo! All these or some variation of them is what I expected, or hoped, I would hear. My brain was bursting with narratives that I was […]

By |November 21st, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

Big and Small coexist

The following post was written by Global Gap Year Fellow, Amelia Laursen.

October 24, 2022

Isabela, Puerto Rico

 

My heart has grown three sizes, or maybe four, or possibly five or could even be twenty-seven sizes bigger since I moved to Puerto Rico. What size does a heart have to be to hold two quarter horses, two ponies, and a thoroughbred mare?

My heart felt a bit stretched at first – in fact there definitely were some very distinct growing pains, one of which involved a horse kick to my left butt cheek, another few involving crushed feet, and a good many more involving tears of frustration and hours spent wading through waist deep wet grass in pursuit of stubborn and hungry horses.

Now my heart is nice and airy and I think my horses are very comfy and homey in it. I’m glad they like being in my heart because they will be […]

By |November 21st, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

The Cycle of Love

The following post was written by Global Gap Year Fellow, Isaac Holmes.

The sun breaks over the ocean at seven o’clock now. It trails gently into the sky, settling into the distant mountains before dinner. The waves are constantly battling the rocky coast. Some days, the ocean throws itself against the roughly hewn granite, soaring up in a fury and falling as gentle mist. Fog rolls off the sea, blanketing the landscape, receding as the sun warms the earth and breaks through the spruce trees. There is less light each day in this rugged and alluring land; the brighter seasons have gone but will come again. The sun makes it not-so-high in the sky, and the quiet comes more quickly with every moon. It is rough and gentle; rugged and fragile; light and dark; sunup and sundown. It is a constant cycling of things in intrinsic dance.

I play only a […]

By |November 15th, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

Island Time

The following was written by Global Gap Year Fellow, Adamaris Delgado.

My second month here in Hawaii I spent it on the north shore of Oahu in a town called Haleiwa. I’m currently volunteering for an amazing surf camp that focuses on teaching beginners how to surf and sharing Hawaiian culture. My day to day tasks include making breakfast, washing dishes, making either lunch or dinner, and packing snacks for the day out. The other volunteers and I have made açaí bowls, pineapple chicken, burgers, burrito bowls, and much more! Before the camp began, my tasks included helping set up the glamping tents for guests, washing sheets, preparing beds, painting lockers, grocery shopping, and organizing.

During the camp, I was lucky enough to be able to participate with the daily excursions. I had the opportunity to join in on surf lessons, yoga sessions, hikes, sightseeing, and beach days! I did an […]

By |November 15th, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

LABOR OF LOVE

The following blog post was written by Bridge Year Fellow, Sophie DuBois.

This blog post is a response to every “how’s work?” I’ve left unanswered in the past month.

Spoiler: I really like it.

It’s crazy how we are so used to feeling busy that any moment of un-busyness sits like an unmarked wet-spot on the floor waiting to slip us into reflection. The particular puddle of un-busyness that soaked me this time was a quietly teary-eyed moment at my work, 826 Valencia, on Friday afternoon.

My day is spent writing, recording, and editing podcasts with children, not often older than 13. Sometimes I get to play a pirate. No, really. There’s no crappy caveat. It actually is just that sweet. And what’s sweeter is that this isn’t accidental. It is the purposeful practice of the ethic of love that 826 cultivates.
826 publishes student work often and well, but not because making more […]

By |October 25th, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

SPENDING FALL IN SAN FRANCISCO AND EATING FIGS

The following blog post was written by Bridge Year Fellow, Sophie DuBois.

I keep telling myself that I’ll probably do a better job if I do this later. No, probably I won’t.

I’ve been thinking a lot this week about that Sylvia Plath piece about figs. Not only do I have a seasonal infatuation with the fruit (one more reason to miss NC) but I’ve also been relating to Plath’s position in this essay- sitting in a crotch. Omg guys, not like that- you wish ;).

In “The Bell Jar” Plath describes sitting in the crotch of a fig tree, brimming with ripe fruit, suspended by her inability to select the Best Fig from all of the syrupy bulbs hanging around her. You might think, “C’mon Sylvia, people are hungry, just pick a fig already! They’re all good!” but Sylvia can’t hear you. Not only because she’s late and much lamented (RIP), […]

By |October 10th, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

Farm Time

The following was written by Global Gap Year Fellow, Adamaris Delgado.

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After applying to college it never crossed my mind that I would be taking a gap year. The only timeline I believed that I had was graduating high school and then starting college the following year. A gap year the stigma that it’s unconventional to take one and that once you’re on it you won’t go back to school.

My only concern was whether or not I was making the right decision for me and let me tell you, so far it’s been amazing. How many people can say that they had the opportunity to take a year off from school to reset their mind and travel the world? Not many, but I have the honor of being a gap year student. I began my gap year experience on August 22nd in Keaau, Hawaii. I was WWOOFING for a farm in Hawaiian Paradise Park for a month. During my […]

By |October 10th, 2022|Gappers in the Field|

Hidden Tattoos

The following post was written by Global Gap Year Fellow, McCarty Hudson.

Two and a half months ago, I was in a coffee shop listening to my friend take the stage with his bluegrass band. It was late, probably around 9:00pm (which I know isn’t that late for most people, but when you wake up at 5:30am every morning, 9:00pm seems late), when this stranger walked in. He wore a baggy jacket, a funky shirt, a mustard yellowish orange beanie, and a smile on his face. I couldn’t help but walk over to him. An instant crush you could say. So we started talking and didn’t stop until we were the last ones being politely pushed out of the shop. We got to the sidewalk, exchanged numbers, and went our separate ways. Me, on my bike riding back to my house, and him, on his feet walking back to his […]

By |April 18th, 2022|Gappers in the Field|