Sunday, June 23, 2013

Honduras Day 1

I'm blogging for our team while we're in Honduras on a mission trip, so I'll be posting what I've written over here, too.
Bienvenidos from Honduras!

Our day started bright and early so we could all make it to the airport by 8:30. Thankfully, everyone arrived on time and with passports (everything else is negligible at that point). We made it through check-in and security without any issues and our flight took off as scheduled.

Photo from Sheri Breaux
After a quick two hour flight, landing in Tegucigalpa was a little on the rough side (we later heard it's the second-hardest airport to land at because the airport is located on the side of a mountain, but you'll want to verify that fact), but we emerged from the plane with stomachs in tact.

Unfortunately, Jon's suitcase did not emerge from baggage claim, so we're hopeful that it will turn up tomorrow. The devil can't bring this group down, though, and one lost bag out of 14 crates of medical supplies, 14 personal suitcases, and over 14 carry on items is nothing. It probably also helps that his wife had a few items of his clothing in her suitcase and we all have plenty of toiletries to share until his bag arrives.

We made it through customs and immigration and two drivers were waiting to take us to the foundation. We were a little sad to see so many American venues (Wendy's, McDonald's, Chili, Pay Less Shoes, etc.), but it is so hard to be distracted from all of the poverty that is surrounded by the natural beauty of this country.

For anyone who's ever driven in Central America (or maybe just outside of the United States), you know that is can be a bit of a breath-taking experience. And by that, I mean you are trying not scream as the 18-wheeler careens precariously close to your window. Any way, mad props go to our drivers who were extremely skilled and kept us safe.

Our drive to the Hope for Honduras foundation wasn't too long, but it was more bumpy than expected. I didn't realize how mountainous Tegucigalpa is, so when we started climbing a mountain I was surprised. I tried to get a shot that showed some of the road conditions plus the steep ascent we had, but they were all blurry. Here's another shot, instead:

We were also surprised to see so many little kids riding in front of or behind an adult on motorcycles. Thankfully most were wearing a helmet (even it if was just a bicycle helmet). This isn't the youngest one we saw today:

We arrived at the beautiful foundation and received a tour from Shelly, one of the founders of the mission. I will definitely be posting more pictures of the foundation itself, but here are a few that I took today:

Little girls across the street from the foundation

This room is where the bilingual classes take place.

This is Shelly and one of her cats. She has so many stories to tell about God's faithfulness- I hope to write a few down and share them with you over the coming week. 

During our tour, you could feel the possibilities of all the amazing work God will be doing this week. It is inspiring to see how much the Lord has been able to do through all the hard work and faithfulness of his servants both here in Honduras and in the hearts of all the volunteers back in the U.S. who provide resources for this mission. 

After our tour, we loaded back up in the vans and headed to dinner at a restaurant. I want to say it was Mexican food, but it very well could have been Honduran food. Either way, we were all pretty hungry by this point (about 4 p.m.) and the food was delicious, so it doesn't matter too much. 

We had these beautiful platters full of tapas-style food. We ate to our heart's content and headed to our bed and breakfast with a quick stop at the super market on the way. Oh, and for anyone slightly freaking out about the margarita-looking drink in the background, it's just fresh pineapple juice.

I didn't take any pictures of the bed and breakfast yet, but rest assured it is beautiful and we will all be sleeping well. After settling in we had a team meeting to wrap up the day's events and practice a song that we will be singing in Spanish for the foundation on Thursday. Oh yeah, IN SPANISH. IN PUBLIC. Let's just say it's a good thing we have until Thursday to practice :-) . 

It was quite a full day, and even though not everything went perfectly we are confident that He is in control and this will be a fantastic week. Spirits are high, our hearts are full, and we are ready for a good night's rest. We are starting work full-force in the morning so there will be quite a bit to report tomorrow. 

Hasta luego!

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