Exploring Our River – The Thrill of Learning

A magical moment of Zack mesmerized by the river.


Living abroad with 2 little boys makes for some exciting educational options.  For school today we decided to go exploring our river.  Our tip got me to thinking about the thrill of learning and the human appetite for excellence.

Learning is awesome, not because learning is awesome, but because excellence is awesome.  Learning is hard, but the thrill of pursing excellence makes it all worth it.  Who wouldn’t want to be a champion athlete, prodigy video game designer, genius mathematician, renowned novelist, master inventor, or legendary rock star?  No matter who we are, it seems, we’ve got an unavoidable crush on excellence.

Today at the river I saw that thrill for learning work it’s magic on my boys.  Their eyes lit up with discovery, and their mouths spouted one question after another.  Being a teacher today meant just being with my boys in a beautiful place.  They took it from there.

Okay, Enough Philosophy, Here’s More About the Experience

A neighbor told us there was river just down a path near our house.  We had no idea!  We strapped on our Keens, filled up our water bottles, stuffed our towels into our backpacks, and headed out, mostly clueless of what to expect.

We got lost pretty much immediately.  It wasn’t until we were heading back home that we realized we had accidentally followed an oxen trail on our way down, which had led us into some thick jungle.  Unfortunately, none of the bushwhacking got caught on film because I was a little preoccupied, but the upside to getting lost was that we found a good tree vine in a clearing for the kids to swing from, which I did manage to film.  I’ve always wanted to swing from a tree vine, but this one wouldn’t hold my weight.  The next adventure, perhaps.

The river was clear and inviting, with slow pools deep enough for swimming.  We didn’t see any fish, or much other wildlife for that matter, but the forest was definitely alive.  Some exotic bird calls kept reminding us that we were not alone.  The sounds, the weather, the water, everything was pretty wonderful.  I even escaped without any mosquito bites.  Pura vida!


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