Our trip will begin March 15, 2015
Everyone arrived at the church early as we prepered to leave by 8PM for FLL airport. Ross and Idalmis arrived with Mac and Patty, Eliesha arrived with Rick and Cordella, Brittany's Dad dropped her off and Greg, having his own parking space arrived by himself. We distributed several bags of donated items and we made sure all bags weighed less than 40lbs. Mother
Kimberly met us to pray for a safe and successful trip and then we were off to the airport. Mike was prepared to drive some of team members but due to last minute
cancellation Mac and Rick were able to fit everyone into their vehicles, including our 16 bags. The
road was crowded going to FLL but we still arrived in less than one hour. We unloaded and got in line while Rick and Mac parked the cars. After hunting for the longterm economy parking they decided to park in the long-term garage which was still quite a walk. The check-in line appeared long but it moved quickly and we were even made it through security with ease.
The flight is only two hours so we barely had time to fill out the immigration cards and we landed in San Pedro Sula. Arriving at 1AM we were the only flight arriving and we moved through customs and immigration pretty quickly with ease. Rick met an 18 year old boy traveling by himself to Roatan where he would later meet his family going on a mission trip. He had a 7 hour layover in San Pedro so Rick gave him lots of advice to keep him safe. Outside Daniel was waiting for us with the OLR 24 passenger (coaster) bus. We loaded our bags and we were on our way to OLR.
At OLR we hauled our bags up stairs to the apartment, assigned rooms, took sheets and towels and everyone quickly climbed into bed.
Rick was the first one awake as he put on a pot of coffee and started to organize a few things for the day. Ross was soon awake and the two went down to meet the girls as they prepared to leave for school. Everyone was so excited to see Rossito and Ricky as they got hugs from everyone. The girls were gathering their book bags, finishing their breakfast and the bigger girls helped the little ones get ready. The girls who go off property for school travel in a the blue mini-van which apparently can seat 29 people including the driver, tia, Ross and Rick. The first stop was only elementary school, one mile away where 9 girls get out. Ross and Rick walked them to their class rooms and said hello to all the other students. The bus then goes to the middle school and then on to the special education school where Vanessa and Iris attend.
The school drop-off take about 45 minutes and Rick encourages everyone to take the ride. The bus then weaves through the traffic heading back to OLR where the rest of the group was waiting to go downstairs for breakfast. At breakfast we all gave thanks for arriving safely and for guidance as we proceed to do our work. After breakfast Mayra, the Director of OLR, met us to give us an introduction to the home and we took a tour of the home and the school. This is the one time we get to enter the girls quarters as they are out at school. They live in simple rooms filled with bunk beads and lockers. It was interesting to see the things they hold most dear on the shelf by each bed: photos, journals and maybe a favorite toy.
After the tour we went for a ride. We rode along the river and saw El Bordo, the slums where 10,000 people live. Tia Belkis explained that this is where some of the girls from the home were born. We then drove through the city and saw the jumble of modern conveniences and poverty, people living in dirt floor shantys but with electricity and no running water, traffic lights where cars and horse drawn carts pass together, people in suits waiting for a bus as children, who should be in school, sell fruit on street corners. It's difficult to process and make sense of so many emotions. We crossed the center of San Pedro and arrived at la Guamalito craft market. We pent about one hour looking at the hand made items, wood carvings, pottery, weaving and souveniers. In the back of the market there are two rows of stalls where women and girls make tortillas at a pace of about 5 seconds each. Everyone purchased a few items and then we were off to the grocery store. From open stalls in la Guamalito to a modern grocery store like any that we have back in Florida. We purchased a few items for our stay in the apartment: yogurt, coffee, milk and of course some chocolate. By the time we arrived back at OLR it was already lunch time. It was easy to see the trip was going to pass by very quickly. Mariam, the cook, prepared a lunch of beans, beef and platains for our nine team members. We enjoyed the meal, shared some observations and then went up to the apartment to gather items for our projects.
Cameras, Movie Focus. Hardware store Eliesha,
Cameras, pool, hardware store, Price Mart, BDay party,
Fr day celebration, hardware store, Umberellas, International review, band, KFC,