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Beaches just aren't my thing

It's summer here in Chile, and for the past three weeks, my family has been on a beach kick.

We've gone to five or six beaches in just that short amount of time. At each beach, we've done exactly the same thing -- we sit there and do nothing.

The first beach we went to was one of the most popular beaches in Chile. It was crowded with people even on the rainy days. The first day we were there, it was raining and so we just went to the market to shop. It cleared up the next day, which allowed us to go to the beach.

I thought that maybe my sisters would want to go into the ocean and swim for a little bit -- who wouldn't? I was wrong.

All they wanted to do was lay in the sun and burn themselves. I, on the other hand, was bored out of my mind doing that which resulted in me breaking one of my most important rules.

I ventured out into the 10-foot waves by myself and broke the buddy system -- gasp! The buddy system is an integral part of the Boy Scout swimming program. We never swim alone. I just couldn't handle lying on a towel for five hours. It just doesn't do it for me.

While body surfing in the waves, I got caught in the rip tide. It was just about the scariest thing ever. I was tumbling around like a dryer beneath the waves and swallowing more than enough water as I rammed into people on my way to the shore.

After that experience, I made my sisters go in the water with me.

The second beach that we went to was just about the most boring week that I've ever endured. The ocean was too dangerous for swimming so all we could do was sit on the beach.

Each day we went to a different beach, but every single one was the same. During this week, I read three books and fell asleep in the sun, resulting in my stomach now being covered with blisters. It is rather disgusting, and it isn't healthy.

This past week was actually enjoyable. We went to the city of Pucon, which is basically a ski town. As you can imagine, I loved it. The city is in the valley of a volcano so wherever you look, you are surrounded by mountains. Not only can you look at the volcano, but you can also climb it.

There is a guided tour where you climb the volcano and then slide down it on a sled. Words do not describe how much I wanted to climb it.

If you don't climb the volcano, you can go white water rafting. Or you can just sit on the beach. My family chose to sit on the beach. (Shocking, I know.) My sisters showed a hint of adventure when they decided that they wanted to go on the inflatable water toys.

There were various items for us to play on. There was a water trampoline, a seesaw, a globe to roll around on, a climbing platform and then a giant maze all out in the lake.

We went in the maze first. I didn't know that my sisters and I were capable of having so much fun together, but it happened. We were laughing, talking and falling all over each other as we tried to get through the obstacles without falling into the water.

During all of this excitement I managed to scrape my knees to oblivion and cut my arm. The cut on my arm started bleeding like Niagara Falls and I was forced out of the water to care for it.

These three weeks reinforced my preference for skiing vacations over beach vacations. I realized that I would much rather have the weeklong ski vacation over the three-week beach vacation any day.

Even though I'm not a girl who likes to sit still, it's all part of the experience and I am grateful for it.

Berit Ramstad Skoyle is a junior at Detroit Lakes High School and is studying abroad in Chile this year.