Well it's 10:20 p.m., and we got through the first day. Nothing like getting up at 3 something in the morning to get to the airport and fly to El Salvador. Makes us tired when we arrived about 1:30. Thought Pastor Javier's eyes were going to pop out of his head when he saw the amount of luggage we all had. Packed the extra van to complete capacity with the luggage filled with computers, used clothing, baby clothing, water filtration replacement parts, softball equipment for the new women's softball tournaments, shirts, caps, Bibles . . . you name it! Whey!
Must admit that Pollo Campero tasted mighty fine about 2:30 when we got there for lunch. However the sweetest part of the day was driving into Siloe's grounds and seeing everyone lined up to meet us as we got off the bus. Flor, Flor, Milagro, Ruth, Fran, Jorge, Juan, Karla, Ricardo, so many old and new friends. It's truly like a family reunion, as everyone was so excited to give hugs and see everyone again.
The newbies (those travelling here for the first time) got to tour the school to get the lay of the land. Then we spent good time together just catching up. Got to hear all about Javier's adventures in convincing the gang leaders to allow them to level the cow pasture and build the new soccer field this past month. The men of the community, the children of the community, and even the women of the community are all ecstatic about the new field as it has become the social center for the community. This spring with the help of Riverbenders, there will be a soccer school for boys ages 6-11, a 4-6 month long soccer tournament for men with hopefully at least 10 teams with 150 men from the community playing. And they are launching tomorrow a new sport for the women: softball. The women are so excited to field two teams tomorrow for a softball game, and we brought down more equipment with us for them that Melissa's mom in Ohio sent to us to bring down.
Topped it off tonight with a grand dinner with various different church and school leaders (32 of us in total), getting a chance to get caught up further and celebrate what is happening in their church. Pastor Javier has been vision casting tomorrow's event to his congregation for the month, encouraging them to turn in big time tomorrow in the La Linea colonia for the soccer and softball tournaments we are helping their church to host, complete with tailgate party cooking enough hamburgers, along with chips and sodas to feed 600 people. Gonna be a crazy day, but so awesome for the church to be serving this community tomorrow. As crazy as it sounds, that means we'll be hanging out with the children, the mom's and the dads many of whom are gang members. The colonia will field their three best teams for the tournament tomorrow and Siloe is fielding the fourth team which sounds like a pretty amazingly talented team.
So, stay tuned for tomorrow, when we bring you pics on facebook and recount how the day went. Can't wait!