Moises Ramirez comes from a Mennonite family of six. Moises was born and raised in Santo Domingo, the capital city of the Dominican Republic, and plays baseball for Goshen College.
He first came into contact with the college through several SST units that traveled to the Dominican Republic and were hosted by members of his home church. Moises is majoring in business and minoring in global economics.
Facts about the DR:
- The capital city of the Dominican Republic is Santo Domingo.
- Spanish is the official language.
- The area of the Dominican Republic is 18,000 square miles, which is about as large as Vermont and New Hampshire combined.
- A round trip ticket to the Dominican Republic costs between $400 and $600.
What is considered one of the most significant customs or celebrations in the Dominican Republic?
The most popular festival for us is the Dominican Carnival, which takes place on February 27th. We celebrate by having masquerades and dancing to folk music. Food is also in plenty on this day.
What is your favorite food and drink from the Dominican Republic?
My favorite food by far is rice, beans and chicken that my mother makes. Nobody can make it the way she does. My favorite drink is Morir Soñando (to die in a dream). This drink is made of orange juice, lots of ice cubes and milk. You have to make sure the orange juice is very cold otherwise the milk will curdle.
What are some of the most popular places to visit?
In my opinion, anyone who travels to the Dominican Republic should visit Punta Cana, which is on the eastern side of the island. It has the most beautiful beaches and resorts. A nice resort to spend your stay at would be Barceló.
What would your typical day look like in the Dominican Republic?
A typical day for me would be getting up and having some mangu (mashed plantains) with scrambled eggs. I would also spend some time at Boca Chica, a beach that is 20 minutes from Santo Domingo.
- Christopher Columbus was buried in the Dominican Republic. He was quoted as saying, “This is the most pleasant place on earth, and it is here I will be buried.”
- The Dominican Republic is the only country with an open Bible on its flag.
- The first university in the Americas, the University of Santo Domingo, was founded in 1538. Universidad Michoacán in Mexico then followed.
- The tallest mountain in the Dominican Republic is Pico Duarte (3,175m). This is the highest point in all of the Caribbean.
PS: Today is Moises’ birthday — if you see him, give him a hug!
–Interviewed by Raymond Waweru