Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Monday, June 28, 2010
Hey everyone! It’s been an awesome weekend down in Haiti. The mission team from Denby Pres in Virginia left for home Friday, leaving the 3 interns behind. We spent most of the day Friday working on creating a digital 3D map of the surveying data we took last week. We’ll start the actual design of the dam and canal soon. On Saturday, we got some good rest by sleeping in until about 8am. Bruce had a few tasks for us that day, but they were quick and easy. It was mostly just bending rebar and connecting some new parts to a car battery charger. We’ve had two visitors this weekend from a company called Protos that works with Bruce on many of the water projects. Martine is Belgian, and Julie is French. They’ve been working with Bruce on accounting stuff. We have definitely managed without his supervision though. With our spare time, we like to play with the neighborhood kids, start soccer games, explore the beautiful Haitian countryside, hang out…There’s always stuff to do here. Church on Sunday was an awesome experience. Everyone dresses their absolute best to worship the Lord. We went to Pastor Chrisbon’s church in Post Metier this time. He gave on great sermon on the 5th Commandment. After church, we got to accompany Bruce and Pastor Chrisbon to Madame Danielle’s house to pray with her for her family. It was really cool to see how the church community will come together to support each other in times of need. And, of course, Sunday afternoon was spent at Pastor Chrisbon’s house where we had a marvelous feast prepared by Madame Chrisbon. So good! Then Sunday afternoon we went to visit a Toutoun, a man who works for Bruce, and his family. And we spent Sunday evening eating amazing mangos and popcorn and hanging out with the Robinsons. What a great weekend!
This week is going to be really busy for us. Bruce has several projects he wants us to start working on. Wednesday we even get to travel up into the mountains to find the source of a river to see if we can use it to supply water to the towns below. And the rest of our team arrives on Friday, and we can’t wait for them to get here. We’ve got plenty to do until they get here though. We’re doing great! Hope everything’s well on the home front.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
The Haiti boys (Jordan and Adam) are back from another tiring day of foundation building up in Foison. We are dust and sweat covered but we’re having an awesome time. We’re a little late on updating everyone so we’ve got a lot to talk about.
Our trip started out with about 26 hours of total travel time. We arrived in Port-Au-Prince (PAP) at about 8:30am after flying from Seattle to LA to Miami and down from there. In the Miami airport we met up with the mission group from Virginia that we’ve been staying with for the first 10 days. They are awesome and we’ve had a lot of fun hanging out at the team house and working with them. There is one other intern here (Kester) along with Adam and I. We arrived at Bruce and Deb’s house at about 7pm after battling the red hats at the PAP airport, sneaking oversized carry on bags onto the Tortug Airlines flight to Port-De-Paix, crossing a river in sinking boats, and a 40 min truck ride with Pastor Chrisbon over some of the bumpiest roads we’ve ever seen. What an experience.
Since then, we’ve been hard at work. The very first day we got the opportunity to survey a section of river where we will eventually be designing a dam for an irrigation canal. We finished the surveying on Thursday thanks to our brand new Nikon total station. Other than that we’ve been working with the Virginians on the foundation of a new school in Foison, a small village in the mountains about 10 miles South of Bruce and Deb’s house. That has involved digging holes; gathering, rolling, carrying, shoveling, throwing, and smashing huge boulders; tying rebar to make foundation columns; carrying and mixing cement. We’ve also had plenty of time playing with the local kids. Around the team house itself, we’ve put together emergency tents that were just delivered, moved building supports, attached a dipole radio that can communicate with the rest of the world, eaten delicious food with the Robinsons, toured Bruce’s previous projects and shop, and explored the area around the team house. We also got to go to the local outdoor market and bakery with Deb. A couple nights ago we attended a Haitian funeral, which was a very interesting experience. We met our first real opposition at a work site where we were building the base of a culvert. A man was throwing a fit that made a lot of the Haitians stop working. It was decided for us to leave the situation and so we went to a pastor’s house nearby. It was a nice drive back to the house with the pastor through the Haitian countryside.
We have loved getting to be a part of Bruce and Deb’s ministry so far and hearing their vision for the future of this remote corner of Haiti. So much of their vision has already come to life, and we’re very excited to see what other amazing things will happen here in the next few weeks. We’ve been very busy, but we’re having a great time. Please keep us in our prayers, especially that God would comfort us from homesickness, would give us strength to complete our tasks, and would be with us in developing our team unity.
We hope you’re all doing well, and we can’t wait to hear about the things God is doing with the other teams. Much love,
Note: The above blog entry was written several days ago, but we were unable to post it due to power and internet issues.
Today was Beach Day!
The week long mission trip of the Virginians is coming to an end, so we got to celebrate by spending the morning at a beautiful beach near Bay De Mustique. It was a beautiful sunny day. We got to swim, snorkel, and play all morning. We found Nemo, dove for sand dollars, and Adam even made a treasure map. All in all, it was a great day enjoying God’s creation.
Haiti is an all around beautiful place. Each little town is different. There are tropical beaches with white sand and turquoise waters near, harsh deserts with cactus and all things prickly, huge rocky mountains, lush tropical jungles, vast banana and mango farms. What an amazing place.
The Virginians will be heading back to the US tomorrow leaving the 3 engineers to continue working. We had a great time getting to know and hanging out with them, and we will miss them. But there’s plenty of work still to be done. Every day is a new adventure in Haiti, and we’ll do our best to keep y’all posted on our activities.
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Me and Trey in Beit Sehoor (House of Waking) just south of Bethlehem where we're staying. We're on top of one of the more significant buildings in the area, because it's owned by a related member of our household (as is just about everyone on the block! Things are like that around here...huge families that cluster together.
Looking north toward Bethlehem
Me and the other Beit Sehoor-ers outside The Shepherds Field (Like, where the shepherds saw the angels! Or at least the traditionally believed location. Probably close enough )
The "Peace Wall." An ever-present reminder of the crazy prejudice going on here... from inside looking toward Israel, you'll see all the graffiti. Some it it is pretty powerful stuff...more to come. Not to sound like the political agenda is sinking in, it's just that the local politics are ever present and the grim reality of the situation inescapable.
I've got more pics from the other day too I'll be getting up here. We got Trey's bag from Jerusalem (Thank the Lord!) and spent some time exploring with one of our friends along with more of Bethlehem. Today we're doing some traveling also, I'll keep ya'll posted. ;)
(Post originated from http://boundlesschrist.blogspot.com)
Thursday, June 17, 2010
I can certainly say that we have lived life in a big way these past few days.
Getting here amounted to what was probably the most stressful 24 hours of either me or Trey's life. Getting everything gathered and packed the night before leaving (with time for zero sleep) only compounded the problems later in the day: in Dallas, about an hour before our plane was scheduled to leave, Trey discovered that his bag had been misdirected to be dropped of in Texas. He had to run down, grab his bag, take it back through security... etc... terrible. In all, about an hour long process, all the while, I had no idea what was going on (no cell phones. O_o ). Got back in time to find out that he got booted from the flight, and had to make it on another, leaving us with no time to coordinate what we were doing once we were in London.
All I knew was I'd get there two hours before he did, and that he was now flying American Airlines, not Brittish. Along the way, I ended up sitting next to two Mormon gals who were heading out for their year-and-a-half long missions trip and were very interesting to talk with. Spent quite a long time talking about God and what we believe "Oh, I just love learning about what other people's beliefs are!" I think were "Sister Alexander"'s words. Mm... they were pretty cool though, left me with a couple things to think about. One of them was talking about how after she had prayed, God had given her a verse and how it was exactly what she needed to hear and how great having relationship with God is and etc. How this book has really changed her life... made me wonder what was really going on. When we departed ways at the airport, they gave me their only extra copy of the Book of Mormon (I tried to refuse... *sigh*... I have no idea what to do with it! At least it's not going to someone else, I suppose).
In London, I and Trey were met with another nightmare. Essentially, we spent the entire 14 hour layover not having a clue where the other person was and trying to wait in various places hoping against hope of finding the other. Trey did venture into the city, whereas I chickened out at the last second. Thought it'd be lame to visit all by myself, and from the sounds of what Trey said, it was pretty lame. Crazy stressful.
I figured that if all else fails, we were to meet at a terminal for our flight out at 1030pm. I woke up from a nap at 9:40, headed over there, and I'm telling you, there are few other faces that could make me feel so suddenly good as Trey's as we ran into eachother in the bathroom....
The flight to Tel Aviv was wonderfully uneventful. I will say that the food on these flights was absolutely incredible. I mean, I haven't had anything besides peanuts or pretzels to eat on a plane in goodness knows how long. Curried Chicken, rolls, salad, dessert, drinks, milk... so good! =D
Tel Aviv: turns out Trey's luggage didn't make it from London. -_- HOWEVER, we made it in the country without a hitch, which was such a blessing! We made it! Met at the exit by a man (not to be confused with this who took us to Bethlehem from the airport...where we met our host family (who are going to be pretty sweet, especially the food!!!! and the couple of kids that are totally awesome! I was playing with one of the kids and his mom told him that I don't actually speak Arabic... the kid disagreed, a fact I found quite amusing).
Trey is still trying to track down his Luggage and may have to visit the airport to get it all figured out... something that's just killing him. I don't blame him =/ . Be praying for his situation! That he get's his stuff! Otherwise, we're alive and well, thinking of home much... it's just starting to set in how far and away both in space and time we really are from Seattle...
[IMAGES TO COME SOON]
Jordan and Adam are here and we are very impressed with them. The whole team’s bags are supposed to come in the morning. They are going to start working on an irrigation canal survey and design in the morning.