El Salvador – Day 5

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July 30, 2011 by Chris French

Today was the last day for us to visit the different congregations. We did two today: San Marcos and Huzcar. San Marcos is by the ocean so we dealt with a lot of humidity while we were there. I did get to work with the work crew today though. This week they’ve installed ceiling fans, light fixtures, put on an addition to a roof, replaced rotten plywood with new and they painted one of the church buildings. None of that stuff is me. Different people have different talents and these guys are really good at this kind of stuff, but today they were hanging chain link fence and I can do that. Someone unrolled the roll of chain link beside the posts and the rest of us came behind them and wrapped wire around the post to hold the fence in place. We got about 75% done and ran out of wire. About halfway thru I left to help with balloon animals since the one guy doing that was probably going to need some help. You can watch a video of me making a “perito” here (dog). Again we ran out of balloons before the children were satisfied with the balloon animals. We even found a four year old balloon artist. You can watch him trying to make a perito here. Be forewarned, he’s pretty adorable and just might steal your heart! After we ran out of balloons I started handing out the little balls with the prongs all over them. I think they’re probably party favors. They don’t really do anything. They won’t bounce, if you throw it at someone you’ll lose it, you can’t play soccer with it. The kids surrounded me when they saw I was giving someone out again, but when they saw what I had several of them left! Can’t say I blame them. They won’t make it on the list of things to bring again next year! Jorita, our Spanish Fearless Leader’s son, lead singing at San Marcos. He’s fourteen years old. He did a great job. Apparently he does this all the time. He also led singing at Olicuilta. You can watch him led a song in Spanish here.

We ate lunch again in the van today because we were running behind schedule. We had to haul to get to Huzcar which was in the mountains, a long way from the ocean. It took a while to get there. Again I’m not sure how long because the bus and the road combo puts me right to sleep! We arrived and the congregation had built a whole new building since last year. It looked great! They had the VBS in their new building and the preaching was outside under a tarp which was good because it started raining while we were there. We sang the Wise Old King, Builder Song and the Hippo Song. The kids didn’t understand a word we said in English, but they like the active songs so they had a good time. We also sang some Spanish VBS songs…with some help. The kids also enjoyed a puppet show in Spanish which you can watch here. It’s the story of Abraham sacrificing the ram instead of Isaac. The Salvadorians have done the same skit at all the congregations we’ve gone to. When VBS and the lesson were over our group started handing out the children’s bags with the beanie babies and crayons etc. They had prepared for 150, there were 164 kids there, but it was okay because they had extras with which to make more goody bags for the kids. We made more balloon animals, but here we made enough that all the kids got a balloon and were happy with it. We had about 6 people making animals! Waverly’s preacher even figured out how to make a balloon airplane. The first one exploded on it’s maiden voyage, but the second one landed safely. Eventually we looked around and each of us is making an animal, but there aren’t any kids around!  We handed out 3 of the soccer balls Zach brought at Huzcar and San Marcos. Each congregation we’ve gone to this week has received 2 soccer balls from our group! That’s pretty cool! We can’t bring the soccer balls in on the front end of VBS or even when there are several kids still around because they would lose their minds trying to get to the ball! We bring them in right before we leave, hand them to the preacher and wish them well! I hope they bless the kids at each of the congregations! Zach did the devotional for our group today. He did great. You can watch his devotional here

After we got back to the hotel, quite a sight for sore eyes after all that time in the magic school bus, we went to eat at Big Bite BBQ right down the road from our hotel. The BBQ wasn’t bad, but the ticket took forever! Luckily Jorge stayed and ironed out the misunderstandings between us and our waiter. Pretty sure if it wasn’t for him I would have paid my ticket twice, Reed wouldn’t have gotten any change back and Zach wouldn’t have had to pay his bill at all! It was probably good that it took so long to get our ticket though because about halfway thru our meal it came a moonsoon. You’ve seen the video of hurricanes in Florida and other places where the palm trees are blowing all over the place and the rain comes sideways? That’s what it was doing! The shopping center our restaurant was in is open air which means it had a roof, but no walls, so the nightly entertainment got pretty wet and had to stop playing. They came back when the rain stopped and we hurriedly paid our tickets and walked back in the dry. It was a good day. Tomorrow we visit the Orphanage. The Children’s Hospital was pretty rough so I’m trying to mentally prepare for the onslaught of emotions that will come with tomorrow’s visit. Keep praying!

I’ve tried explaining the way we get the food bags from the room inside the Central church to our bus outside, but I figured a video would do the job better so you can watch the video here. Today we emptied out the room we had all the bags in so today was the last day we’re going to do that too. My shoulders were getting pretty sore, but it was kind of fun throwing those bags. Oh well, we’ll just have to come back next year so we can do it again!

You can check out the pics from today here

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