Day 1: planes
We left Chambersburg this morning excited to go to Guatemala but also anxious. After driving to the airport, we boarded a plane to San Salvador, which was a new experience for some people. On the plane all announcements were first made in Spanish which was our first sign we weren't in familiar territory. We landed safely and soon after boarded our flight to Guatemala. It was a very short flight and we landed safely.
We all have different expectations going into the week but are also going into it with open minds. Our main goal is to show God's love and experience it ourselves throughout the week.
-- Jackson Stahl
day 2: pools and piñatas
Our first full day in Guatemala started out early for some. In the girls room through our large window some of us were awoken by a rooster at 3:15 in the morning. We all slowly got out of bed later and ready for the day. For breakfast we tried licha -- it's a pinkish fruit with little spikes. It tasted like a cross between a pear and a grapefruit. Definitely new. It made me think about how just because things look rough on the outside doesn't mean they're all bad. After breakfast we all got on the yellow bus to go to the pool.
We were going to the pool for a birthday celebration for the at-risk families Servants are helping. Some of these kids have never been to the pool and don't even own a swimsuit.
My only concerns or worries would have been the language barrier which wasn't too much of a problem thanks to my new friend Carmen. Carmen was very patient with Emily, Elizabeth and I's limited Spanish. She would speak slower for us, use her hands, try and show what she meant, and most of the time in the end we would have a pretty good understanding of what she meant.
I'm very thankful for all the patience, kindness, and how welcoming everyone was. While at the pool a group of us, Emily, Carmen, Elizabeth, and I ran between the very cold pools with slides and the nice warm pools. We joked that going down the big slide was a right of passage which meant almost everyone went down.
After sandwiches for lunch, we had cake and some piñatas. We got back on the bus to make our long hilly way home. We said goodbye to everyone on the bus as we dropped them off at their stops. Saying goodbye to Carmen was sad but later this week we'll be able to see her again when we go and help out at her house. That's definitely what I'm looking forward to.
-- Emily Stroble