In the Spirit The Upper School’s annual March Spirit Week actually started in February this year, turning the week of February 28-March 4 into a fun-filled and slightly offbeat experience (but without ignoring classes, of course). The themed days of the week determined the dress code, starting with Pajama Day on Monday and culminating in a school-wide Maroon and White Day, with all students (not just the Upper School) wearing the school colors. The school spirit that the event promotes reached a peak on Friday, when all the students from the Upper and Middle Schools gathered at Coach Colman Field to support the boys varsity soccer team in its friendly match against Greengates. ASF won, 6-1. Focus asked 11th-grader Alfredo Trueba to describe what it was like to be an Upper School student during this special week. Here’s his report: All of us enjoyed the change of pace from our weekly routine. Lunchtime, which tends to be mundane and uneventful, became remarkable and exciting. We witnessed a variety of events, as students dressed up in accordance with each day’s theme in all sorts of unusual outfits. It was a thrilling week, characterized by odd happenings, such as students coming to school on Monday dressed in the exact same way as they went to sleep. Pillow fights broke out, involving the dean of students, Omar Ugalde. The halls were a sight to see, with the spotting of various TV characters ranging from Steve Urkel and Ugly Betty to Clark Kent and the Green Lantern. Even Barney Stinson from “How I Met Your Mother” suited up and paid a visit. In a bizarre twist, gangsters, hipsters and others in tacky outfits shared a temporary stage, where people danced enthusiastically. On Thursday there were arm wrestling and tug-of-war competitions, with freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors all competing for the ultimate prize —respect. Spirit Week coincided with the Economics Fair, and ended with an outstanding performance by the ASF soccer team, with the entire student body cheering them on.
The trip to Isla Isabel, two hours from the port of San Blas in the state of Nayarit, has been a tradition for ASF sophomores. The island isn’t far from the Islas Marias, a group of islands used as a prison. Isabel is protected by the Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas, and has been isolated from the influence of humans to avoid damage to its natural ecosystems and habitats. Only a certain number of people are allowed to visit the island at any one time, and by law, they can only camp there for one night. Even though the objective of the trip was to visit the island, we also had the opportunity to visit several places in Nayarit, including Boca de Camichín, La Tovara, San Blas and Sayulita. During the two hours it took us to travel to the island, we saw a lot of whales, enjoyed the trip and had chicken and shrimp tamales for breakfast. When we finally arrived, everyone was surprised to see the abundant number of birds flying around the island. That day we walked and explored the island and had the chance to jump from a cliff. After that, we went to a beautiful virgin beach next to our campsite, and we relaxed and enjoyed the afternoon there. Our last activity of the day was to hike to the highest point of the island where there was a lighthouse and an amazing view. At night, we set our alarm for 3:00 a.m. to see the stars, and some people were even lucky enough to see shooting stars. The next day, we picked everything up and waited for the other group to arrive so we could leave. We thought our visit was over, but the waves were too aggressive and we were told the other group would not be able to arrive; therefore, we all had to stay another night. We are the first and only group to have stayed two nights in a row on Isla Isabel. We had an amazing experience on this unforgettable trip. — Paty González and Mafer LeDuc, ASF 10th Graders
Focus Spring 2011: The Green Issue