29 Feb Loving the Lob – WAVES is rolling onwards
I wanted to go to South America and I wanted to not just travel but to do something to get closer to the culture, getting insights and learning the language. And I wanted to surf. So I googled for possibilities matching my desires. I found the WAVES website and instantly liked the whole idea: Surf Voluntourism in Peru.
Some further research clarified that there was and is no better alternative. So I mailed Dave Aabo (the executive director of WAVES Intl.) the application form and he was obviously happy that I was interested in doing a 3-month internship in Lobitos. That was in June…
Late November, I finally arrived in Talara. Pim (WAVES volunteer coordinator) picked me up and I found myself in a screaming Mototaxi on the dusty way through Peru’s desert coastal landscape to Lobitos. When I finally got to see the whole set up I thought: “Yes, that´s what I want! And I will be here for three long months. Great.”
Now, 3-months later, I look back and these three long month do not seem quite that long. It flew by and was over before I knew it. I walk away with from this feeling like so much has happened, so much was achieved and there are so many stories to tell and a lot of great experiences to share. Below a summary:
- Experiencing Peruvian culture in a work environment and learning from it;
- Attending surf classe s and teaching kids how to surf;
- Moving the Centro de Surf and creating a room full of surf shop atmosphere;
- Being able to utilize and share my business knowledge when it comes to accounting, marketing and new business models;
- Eating with local families and eating Peruvian food (my favorite is Ceviche!);
- Strolling over the markets in Talara to buy food;
- Making friends with locals and the WAVES staff; and,
- Of course surfing one of Peru´s best waves!
With the knowledge accumulated during my internship, WAVES now has the opportunity to become more sustainable and focused in their search for qualified long-term interns for specific tasks (i.e. further improving the Centro de Surf business model). This is not just beneficial for the community in the long run but also for WAVES, the staff and the future interns.
Lobitos is a lovely, growing desert village with an interesting historical
background, friendly people and lots to offer. And even if one of my personal conclusions is that I never could live here for a long long time I wouldn´t have minded to stay longer because it feels like home…
Ps: Dear Raffael Schmidt Deutsch or was it Deutsch Schmidt. Your presence, work, ideas, energy and friendship are much appreciated! Myself and with me many people here in Lobitos will miss having you around! Looking forward catching up in a couple of weeks… Safe travels and see you when I see you… A big bear hug Pim