Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Back in the gray

I need some catharsis, so I am here typing. I hurt my back yesterday...lifting a 145 pound box containing some scaffolding. I have picked up things that heavy before, actually thought about calling someone to help...but proceeded and felt something give. It was hurting yesterday but I kept working (sorting clothes however, even I knew that more physically bending work would not be possible. 
So today with the back getting worse I got a transfer...to translate for Aaron as he took over for Valerie, giving her time to do other things as clinic director. It was cool to watch another optometrist work, as usually I only get one person’s perspective on how to do things. I think I learned a few things even as we saw quite a few patients (not a lot of time for chit chat...foreign body, some regular consults, a woman functionally blind from cataracts asking about surgery, etc.) before we had to leave to pick up another group member at the airport, as well as run some other errands. Had I not hurt my back, there would have been little chance I would have been able to do that...not that I am wishing for a repeat as I sit here very still to try to not aggravate the pain. Don’t make the pain angry...you won’t like it when it is angry.

When we got back we took some sorted clothes to the local dump. Even with the sewing ministry we can simply not continue to store some of these huge clothes, sweaters, other inappropriate clothes we sometimes get...we just do not have the space.  The sewing ministry is using some of these clothes, but it will be hard to get this sorting down to zero.
This will be the last group of the year we will likely be able to use to help us sort in a large way, and it is quite impactful for them to see what happens when we “throw” these clothes away as well...where people live (one small shack seen here above), and how they try to eek out a living every day. These clothes that are otherwise laughed at or treated with casual disdain in other locations are very much appreciated by everyone that comes out to get what they can in these circumstances.
The Blue Ford was waiting for a steering gear box from the US that the group brought down...but upon installation and further inspection it turns out we need all new tie rod ends, and some other parts. So...no Blue Ford for the next couple days as the work progresses. Thankfully we have the Land Cruiser that was in Sampedrana to fill the void. We have lovingly nicknamed that ambulance style LC “Andy”...our first vehicle to get a nickname other than what the factory gave it.
While I was translating in the clinic today I got to catch a glimpse of our intern Jesi doing some research work for her upcoming pharmacy school studies...counting pills. She has also been doing a ton of work in the sewing ministry, helping with new designs and instruction to all of the women in the project and even working on making some clothes for some of the area kids.
The group worked yesterday and today as well on the Church building. Between them and the several Hondurans we had helping, they did a ton from helping get closer on a finished sidewalk outside the building (more to come there, mostly working on the finishing cosmetic touches, also might need a guard rail...not sure on that yet) to more mud work on the dry wall that was already put up and the local business we contracted with putting in the windows (finally...still several windows yet to be installed)....
...and as well a ton of work on putting up more dry wall on the offices section near the back of the building, and laying the plywood flooring up there as well. You can really see things taking shape more and more now! (The usher's room is on the left on the first floor, the sound booth on the right, and upstairs three offices the Church requested.) 
The groups this year are really a driving force helping this all take shape, but your funds as well are helping the work to continue when groups are not here. Please pray for safety, wisdom, and the funding to continue to come in that we might push through and finish this huge project this year! We even heard on Saturday that one couple is waiting to get married until this building is built...yet another reason we want to work as fast as possible!

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