Sunday, December 30, 2012

Who are you again?

The His Eyes staff Christmas dinner....well in this case late lunch, was on the 20th. I kind of miss the days when we had everyone’s entire family invited, but even lo those many years ago it was quite a few people and hard to handle, let alone now with an expanding staff! Just with full time staff and some with one guest invited, we were near 50 people!

Of course, what event would be complete without some transportation issues...Andy here decided to quit running. We coasted to a stop exactly at a police checkpoint. The running joke was whether the truck was safer being left there or somewhere without any police. Even the policeman that watches over the clinic who was with us laughed a little when we were all discussing the situation. We left Andy there, and Oscar and I went back later that day to get Andy back home. Thankfully the issue was not anything terribly complex.  Also thankfully...Andy was still there when we got back. 
Even with the vehicle problems, everything else with the dinner went well. As with most multi-faceted operations, for some people this is the only time they get to see each other all year, and with a few staffing changes, it is also a good time for everyone to introduce themselves, share a few words, and just have some good fellowship. I’ll admit it is not my favorite activity of the year for me personally, but it is important, especially as only two of us (Oscar and I) get to see everyone and see/hear what they do throughout the year. Everyone knows the mission does more than their individual area, but this once a year gathering it the only time they can see the other sides and get at least a little glimpse at just how much God is doing and how many lives are being touched.
And the atmosphere at the restaurant (El Patio)where we ate was great...a separate room for just us, with special murals on every wall and Christmas lights hanging from the entire ceiling. Someone got a shot of all of us together but I have not received it yet to post here. The whole room was full of great spots for posing and getting pictures as couples, friends and co-workers.
And even with Oscar gone on vacation to visit family in Costa Rica and Panama, the work on the TSP continues. We are a little behind on the financial side of things, but still trying to push through where we can. Thankfully the pastors at the Church told us that they were not in a hurry to set an inauguration date anyway (getting paperwork done, inviting people, etc.), so that gives us a little breathing room in getting things done, and we were not going to put ourselves in a deeper hole to meet the arbitrary end of the year deadline we had set for ourselves.
We did not keep on a full staff through the holidays, but we do have Miguel and Jorge are working on painting, bathroom doors, the interior dry wall work and trying to work on the trim for the windows, but the metal that Oscar got before he left is not allowing to completely cover the corners. That will be something to tackle when he gets back...have to send it out to be redone.   
There have been problems/opportunities like this from the beginning of this project, not every day, but at least every week.  Some small, some rather large...Sometimes frustrating, sometimes rewarding...but always there.  The exterior was designed, but to execute it fell upon us, mostly with little instructions, and the interior for sure has been just an interesting journey of finding solutions, the right solutions for building something that we want to do to a higher standard than we would do for ourselves.   
The guys we contracted to do the tile work are working very fast. They have a few tiles that will need to be re-done (not set up as well as they should, greater risk for tiles to crack in the short/long run), but as you can see they are making quick work of things. Even with the holidays for the 1st of the year, they might actually have a chance of finishing by the end of the week....still needing to do the downstairs offices, the ramps, bathrooms, and the outside entrance patio.  We will do the mop strip (the tile that will run along the wall for decoration/protection when cleaning) later in January....we figure we can handle that without screwing anything up...unlike maintaining those long straight lines over 100' long in the floor.    

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