Our day started off when we drove to the Pueblo school down the road to go volunteer with elementary students. The Pueblo was closed but they allowed us in. We were assigned in groups of three to a grade level. The grade levels included Pre-school, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 5th. Once we were there, we spent time getting to know the children, tutoring them throughout the day.
At around 12’oclock, we left the school and drove back home to pick up our bathing suits. Once all were ready, we hiked down the Rio Grande for about a mile to local hot springs. There were 3 pools and one of them was super hot, the other one was hot, and the last one was just warm. We then hiked back up to the van and found that the elevation of about six thousand feet took a toll on the pace of our hiking.
In the evening, we went to an eccentric man named Larry Torres’s house and he told us many stories about his life including his studies of witchcraft, the languages he has learned, and the places he has been to. He speaks 24 languages, has lived in 58 countries, and is currently a linguistics professor and deacon at the local Catholic Church. His house was as unique and interesting as he was. He was very spiritual and painted almost all of the paintings in his house, most of which had religious themes. He gave us a tour of his house describing every unique attribute in his home. He has been interviewed by many magazines and has a lot of unique stuff that people have felt the need to hide in his house. He also has a secret dungeon, but he says that not many people have even heard of, let alone seen it. Fortunately, we weren’t allowed inside it. Even weirder than the secret dungeon, however, was that he has been collecting his fingernail clippings for the past 50 years! He showed us a wooden box filled with his old nails. It was fascinating, gross, and fun to play with. He also told us a story in French, Spanish, Russian and English simultaneously, he is so unique! Although another unique aspect of his house is that it was neighboring Julia Roberts’ house. Ms. Biscardi (A.K.A. Mama B) was very sad that she did not bring her binoculars. We are very fortunate to have met such a person.
On the way home in Biscardi’s Party bus, Mulhern and Leah took it back Ice Cube style and then Aiden and Orly took it back further with “Boogie Wonderland”. All together we had a pretty fantastic day in gangsters’ paradise.
Leah and Caleb