Friday morning we needed to be back in the village, in the river at 8:00 am to work with some local men. So, the day began at 3:38 am for me. I had gone to bed early and by 3:30 I was awake and couldn’t turn off my mind. I was taking the team and both my little boys back to the village to work for the day. So, I got up packed lunches for three, changes of clothes for three, first aid stuff for three, water bottles for three. Pretty much anything me or the boys might need for the day. I then made scrambled eggs and toast for all of us (15 eggs and a loaf of bread) and we ate breakfast at 5:30 am. We were out the door at 6:00 am in the taxi and the truck headed to the bus station.
MAFG needed the truck that day so we had to take a bus out to the village. What that means is that we get on a bus going east and ask them to let us off at the dirt road that leads to the village. The bus that we got on at the station was a schoolbus. They use school buses here instead of the greyhound type buses. So, we hopped a bus and they let us off an hour later at the dirt road leading to the village. We then walked, I mean hiked, I mean seriously walked up and down and up and down and up and down and up and down this dirt rocky road for about 45 minutes. And I was carrying enough stuff for three days in the jungle for three people and it was a pretty difficult little walk for this girl. The students and the boys were great. They just skipped on ahead.
Jono took pity on me and stayed back with me. I mean, he walked slowly taking in the scenery with me. He told me that he didn’t want me to be lonely so that’s why he was walking with me. I kept telling him he could go on ahead with the others, but he just stayed by my side. Such a little love. We met Walter in the river and worked for several hours moving rocks to make the channel in the middle of the river deeper for the generator something something something something. I’m not completely clear on all the engineering technical stuff. But it was hard work. Like tear-up-my-hands-and-exercise-all-my-muscle-groups hard. It was absolutely wonderful. So stretching. No pun intended. And seeing my boys playing on the rocks in the middle of the river. Like little jungle boys. Wow. Amazing. And every so often I would look up at the jungle around us and think “am I really really here?” because it seems kinda surreal.
Oh, and I have to tell you about the local men and how they work. First of all, they work hard. Really hard. But they also work really smart. Several of the men were trying tomove three huge boulders out of the middle of the canal. As they would work along, at times they would stop because they needed a certain tool. So they’d go over to the side of the river and, get this: CHOP DOWN A TREE AND MAKE THEIR OWN. Not kidding. They use a machete like nothing I’ve ever seen. They chop, chop and down comes the tree. The trunks are about as big around as a softball. They cut off all the branches and most of the bark. Then they kinda whittle it down into what ever they need. Spear? Here ya go. Ax handle? Ok. Chopping blade? Not a problem. It was like watching the Discovery Channel in real life. So impressive. Completely cool.
When we were finished, we walked back to Walter’s house where we changed clothes and his wife, Mayra, fixed us this warm shrimp soup with rice and home made tortillas for lunch. Served with lemonade. On a little plastic table with a piece of tarp as a tablecloth and it was perfect! We sat on pretty much all their “chairs” and used all their dishes. It was such an honor to eat at her table. Walter and Mayra and their children sat under the shade of the tree while we ate. I think it is part of their culture to serve guests and then let them eat on their own. But I’m not sure because so much is left unsaid and all the stuff that is said I can’t understand anyway. I’m trusting that the Holy Spirit communicated for us. Lots of smiles and “muchas gracias” and “perfecto” and stuff like that. Not any hugging. I wish they did that more in this culture. But I totally respect it.