First we see the advancement of the driveway to the new clinic. With quite a few people, we might be able to finish most of what we needed to get up there, and maybe even some of the little areas for parking. We will see Monday. If we do the parking, we will try to leave spaces in between for small little patches of garden or something, just to break up the cement, if you will.
The one thing I do not have pictures of is the one part of this construction I have yet to see, the putting together of the pews we received in a recent container from the US. We bought new hardware, spent a bit of money to get them put together in a nice way, and sent Miguel and five group members each day to get as much done as they can for them to be used for the Church in San Juancito. So far, 17 put together, and 5-6 more to go before the ones that did not fare so well will have to be suplemented by a local carpenter there in the Church. This will be huge for the Church to have good pews versus the plastic chairs they bought...which can in turn be taken for Sunday School use, as well as to the Churches in Cantaranas and Talanga, which could certainly use it as well.
Here we have Juan, fresh back from being deported from the US (he went legally, but immigration did not like his trip frequency, or the reason he was travelling, so....keeping in mind he had a visa....they shackled his hands, feet, and waist, and then put him back on a flight.) He and Leandra both had a very God centered view on the whole thing, and is moving forward...but it was not exactly a positive or warm fuzzy experience for those US citizens he met during those several long hours. He was working with a group to stucco the new clinic so it would be ready for painting (another group, another time.)
And the most fun, ditch digging! The roads in the neighborhood have deteriorated drastically with the recent rains, and with the local government no longer threatening to take away the road next to the property, fixing a ditch to get the water out of the road is now a good idea again. We watch many, many vehicles spin their tires, burn their tires, over and over again trying to get up that road...especially since the "main" road is now almost totally impassable.
This is a view from under the portion of the ditch that serves as the entrance to the Church for the buses. We had to break holes in the concrete to clean out this hole....which was full of....interesting items, mud, etc. Yuck, but now it is clear, especially compared to before, and all that is left is to pour heavy removable pieces for future cleaning.
And what a view of a group member very motivated and hard working to get things even cleaner. Half his body is stuffed into the hole you see above trying to get all that stuff out, holding a rake and dragging everything towards him so we could remove it. Insert your own remark here about this being his best side (either as a joke or testiment to his serving the King) but there is little doubt that he was hard core.
The Peace Corps is auctioning off one more Ambulance style Land Cruiser. With the ailing Mitsubishi being sold, this would be a great replacement.....perhaps not exactly what we would imagine for the pastor, but as a people mover, tough, reliable and easy part availability vehicle, these are great, especially if we get it for the price we put down on our secret ballot. Please pray this would come through....they will not be selling any more vehicles until at the earliest the first months of 2010. If this looks familiar....it is because it looks just like the one we got from them for the Church in Sampedrana. And in case you were wondering....we are contemplating buying a make shift trailer for them to haul for getting construction materials (or for San Juancito/Cantaranas, to carry more clothes to the stores there) a pickup bed with axle sort of thing.
Cecilia could not have been happier to see another group, especially when some of the group knew some Hannah Montana songs. Here we see a willing participant helping her sing "the throwdown, hoedown." With the kids in school until November, they will not get to spend too much time with the group, but they enjoy what time they do get to be with them.
Valerie has to deal with quite a bit at the clinic. Imagine the normal work of a doctor, combine that with a missionary trying to reach people and care for them like Christ, especially as it pertians to their eyes, and their souls, and then add to that seeing patients like the one she had today (a -19 for those in the know) plus routinely (yep, this continues this week) to turn people away as soon as she gets there at 7:15 or so every morning...and it all adds up to her being tired, stressed, and ready for bed early many nights. Here I caught one of the nursing students just reaching out to help her while she tried to work on charts with a nice back rub. It seemed like a good picture, I hope you agree.