Monday, September 19, 2011

Catching up with "old" friends

Remember as I post these I'm weeks behind, so don't get confused by the dates of the posts and the time line of the stories!

Friday Sept 2nd I got to see the Barnabas team that was in town for the week! Between their travel delays (ahh hurricane season) and my craziness at school I was worried I wouldn't have a chance to see them. It really is true that things work out exactly as they should. Friday was the team's last day in the field, and the usual final-day dinner with the Honduran team. This team is apparently a super-friendly team, and they had quite the party going on! I arrived at the house in the middle of a rain storm, hands still a little water-logged from playtime in the pila. This poor team dealt with some heavy rains every night of their trip. But they all had great attitudes about it--nothing's holding down a Barnabas mission!

The team gave me such a warm embrace, it was just what I needed. Getting to see so many friends for the first time since March was incredible. It felt like Christmas! Berta was there, the cook from my March mission. I wish I could have taken a picture of her face when she saw me. We hugged like we'd been separated for years--and I learned she's getting married at the end of the month! I got to see Jorge and Carlos, some of the translators from March, and even got to meet Carlos' wife and two little boys. Cuties. Getting to hug Elmer and catch up on what we've missed was so special. I met his wife and new baby, and it was great to see his other two children  again. It was funny seeing some of the people like Denilo with looks on their faces like yes...I of course remember you, but what was your name again? That name I couldn't pronounce? It was really awesome. I even got to see Melvin Flores :) What a treat! For those who don't know, he is the man who introduced me to the school and promised to be my family while I'm down here. It was so, so good to see him and get to catch up. He sat with me at dinner, and we chatted the night away. He's incredibly busy right now (correction--we're both incredibly busy right now :) but in a few weeks he wants to have me out to his house in San Pedro for the weekend. I haven't seen his wife Mary or their three kids since the night we landed in March, so I am really looking forward to visiting them. 

We had a big fish fry with fruit, rice, beans, chimol, tajadas and freshly-fried (and I'm sure freshly-caught) tilapia. They even had cake! I felt so spoiled! Papa Joe, one of the team members (I can't remember how many teams he's traveled with, but I do remember it's a LOT) has been so kind to me. I met him right before I left the States, and was so excited to get to spend some time with him here. He's returning with a team in October, so I'm really looking forward to that! So many stories were shared after dinner, stories of the team's experiences throughout the week, stories of how different team members came to be part of the team, stories of who I was and how exactly I "fit in" with the group, stories of past experiences with teams, stories of how the Alfredo House came to be, and what the living arrangements were like before it was built--what a night!

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