Nic Freschi Checks In From Ecuador


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Nic Freschi, Verona High School Class of 2011, has gone to Ecuador on a gap year program through Global Citizen Year. He’s been placed in a rural village with no TV, no Internet and no cell phone service. It does have a lot of other things, like work to do:

“If there’s one thing I learned this week, it’s that there is a big difference between saying “I’m going to be living in rural Ecuador on a Global Citizen Year,” and living in rural Ecuador on a Global Citizen Year. There is one phrase that was beaten into my head these past few days that particularly describes this difference: “Mas duro.” In English, this roughly translates to “harder”. “Mas duro! Mas duro!” encouraged my host mom as I squeezed the cow as firmly as I could, but drew no milk. “Mas duro! Mas duro!” cried my brother Nixon as I smashed my aching wrists once again into the rock hard Ecuavollyball (read: overinflated soccer ball). “Mas duro! Mas duro!” chanted my host dad as I failed to cut through the thick layers of roots with my spade while tilling the potato fields. “Mas duro! Mas duro!” yelled my family members as the cattle I was supposed to be herding took control and dragged me down the mountain headfirst. I now realize that walking the walk will certainly be “mas duro” than talking the talk.

You can read all of Nic’s post here.

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]


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