October Volunteer of the Month: Sophie MarshI vividly remember how I felt leaving for Costa Rica in April 2011. Nobody in my class could stop talking about how excited they were - excitement to leave the country for the first time, to travel without their parents, to get out of a couple days of school. I didn't have many feelings. I wasn't dreading the trip, but I wasn't particularly looking forward to it. I didn't know what to expect. I definitely didn’t expect my feelings – or lack thereof - to change so quickly. In five days, the village of El Sur, Costa Rica stole my heart. Two weeks after returning home I searched for ways to return, and through fundraising and long hours of work, in July 2011 I went back for two weeks - completely alone, not speaking a word of Spanish. Those two weeks were inspiring, rewarding and a major turning point in my life. Junior year of high school soon took over and didn’t allow a moment to think about anything except schoolwork and SATs, let alone leaving the country, but this summer I had the opportunity to return for a week, and January2013 I’ll be back for two more.
I've never had a good idea of what my future holds, only vague ideas. I'm still young and have no idea what the future brings, but I know my experiences in Costa Rica have had a huge impact on how I’d like to spend my life. I’d love to take my experiences and build on them and expand them. See other parts of the world and help be part of the solution instead of the problem. I have so much respect for the people of El Sur. For their positivity, their love and their inspiring, beautiful lifestyle. I hope that I will have the chances to work with the people of El Sur for the rest of my life as well as other parts of the world. I feel irrevocably blessed for having the experiences that I have had and for being able to work in and experience such an incredible place.
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Sauteed Chinese Eggplant
A dish you'll frequently seen on plates all over China, Sauteed Eggplant is light, fresh, and easy to make. Try it as a side to your favorite entree or as a main course on top of rice, and enjoy the savory and delicious flavors that will inevitably have you begging for more!
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 5 mins
Total time: 10 mins
You will need:
1. Chop the eggplant up into pieces, by slicing diagonally.
2. Cover the bottom of the wok with vegetable oil.
3. Saute the ginger and garlic in the oil
4. After about 1 minute add the eggplant slices.
5. When the eggplant starts getting a bit softer (about 4 minutes) Add the soy sauce, sugar and red pepper flakes.
6. After about 1 minute, add the green onions. Optional: reserve about 1/4 of the green onions to garnish the dish after
7. Saute for another minute, then add the sesame oil.
8. After another minute, remove from heat.
9. Optional: Garnish with remaining green onions
10. Serve with rice and enjoy!
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