November 12, 2006
Our trip, in pictures
The cathedral in Ahaucatlan (pronounced like "I watered the lawn"). This is the town we stayed in, and we were able to enjoy this view every morning and evening.

L and I before getting on the bus one morning. We stayed about 20 minutes away from the two villages we set up clinic in, as neither of them was large enough to sport accommodations. As it was, we took the entire hotel we stayed in, with some people actually sleeping on the balcony on air mattresses. L and I shared the tiny room below with another married couple, and we shared a bathroom down the hall (and all the cold water you could desire) with 20 or so others.

A doctor and one of his patients. He is on his knees on the floor- she is standing. At 5'8", I felt like Slush the Lumbering Giant...

Our pharmacy in the village of Amixtlan, where we spent the first two days of clinic. When we got there, we had no furniture. We were meeting in a partially built (and apparently forgotten) church, so my enterprising mate foraged for blocks and boards and made a pretty nice shelving system, considering.

Two women waiting for their medications.

A woman from Amixtlan in her traditional dress. Most of the older women are clothed like this, though many of the younger ones are wearing more modern clothing.

The construction part of our team built a meeting house for about 40 Christians, who had been meeting in that ramshackle house to the left, which is the home of a paralyzed man and his family. The building was done by the end of the week and we joined them for the first worship service in it, but it was dark and I didn't get any pics of the finished product.

We spent our last two days of clinic in a village called Cuatatola, which means turkey- and there were lots of skinny turkeys running around. The road to the village is not completed, so it required a 1.5 mile hike up the mountain to get to our location. The first day, we (the medical team) got a ride up in the back of a police truck, but the second day we had to tough it out. As you can see, it was a wee bit muddy...

This is the village where the road runs out and the bus stops, taken from the top of the mountain in Cuatatola. When I took the photo, I had no idea that was where I was walking to. It wasn't so bad on the way down, but the way up was an entirely different story!
After we got down to the church you saw above (the yellow building on the left), these kids were playing with hot air balloons. They used sterno cans to fill them with air and then they went up, up, and
I could bring them all home with me...
This is Wilber the bathroom pig (who was actually more of a Charlotte, if you get my meaning...). By the end of the week, you were likely to hear the phrase, "I'm going to see a man about a pig..."
This is the bathroom at our second clinic. If you were to be squatting (there's no seat, so it's definitely a squatting kind of place), you could see Wilber through the cracks around your blue privacy curtain. And you could see him without your glasses, because the gate to his pen is only about 2 feet from your doorway. Between Wilber and the 6 foot hole beneath your toilet, it's a very fragrant place to be. I think Wilber was lonely, as he started to grunt and speak as soon as we would come around.

After your business was done, you got a bucket of water from this cistern and poured it down the toilet to "flush". Really, it's an ingenious system. Stinky, but ingenious. My friend Robyn is demonstrating.

As you can see, the surroundings were beautiful, and the accommodations sometimes a bit rough. However, we had a great trip and enjoyed the experience greatly. We feel so blessed that we have been able to be God's workers in the fields these last three years. It was probably my last trip for a few years, what with little Julio coming along (hopefully) soon, so parts of it were bittersweet. Hopefully, L will be able to continue to go without me.

Blogger auntdaisy said...
Oh Tink....that is exactly how my friend saw El Salvador when she was there...sad to think people live like that when we are so spoilt.. And I would have taken some of those precious faces too!

welcome back home? Any word on Julio?

Blogger Carbon said...
Welcome back!

I'm sure hatchling is happy to have you home too :)

Amazing how vastly different people can live all around the world. Thanks for the pictures into a different view.

Blogger Amy said...
Oh, I need to get into a missions trip habit. I think LM and I both would love it!! Thanks for sharing the pictures and stories. I agree, I could bring each one of those beautiful faces home!

Blogger scribbit said...
What great pictures! You're obviously an adventurous traveler.

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Blogger Sig said...
Love the toilet shot. Wow, you get to flush the old fashioned way. Sounds....delectable (yuck!)