If you consider 127 degrees hot enough, then the answer is a resounding yes! It was business as usual this morning, although we were hoping that a man playing the accordion was going to show up at 5 am to play music in honor of Nick’s birthday, as is the tradition here in Honduras. Lucky for the kids who got to sleep an extra 30 minutes this morning!
We were slightly more sluggish after yesterday’s first “real” work day- the muscles were definitely feeling sore. We drove out to Vallecillo and it was great to see the kids saying hello to familiar faces within the community. Today’s mantra soon became, “Depth over distance,” as the terrain proved to be rockier and more compact than the day before. The group made great progress (with the help of some very strong Hondurans) and were proud of the work at the end of the day. Another neat experience today was seeing how everyone tried to take less portions of their lunch so there would be more food left at the end to feed the villagers. They are definitely learning the importance of the food they have so readily available.
On a typical day we would have the afternoon to ourselves and would be filled with showers and relaxing, but not today! The girls remained at the compound and continued putting bags together for the families in Vallecillo while the boys went to a home in Esquias to replace their dirt floors with cement floors. This was quite an experience for everyone as they do not have the same resources as we do in the US. They all learned how to mix cement by hand so parents, if you ever need that job done, you know who to ask!
After a very long day of working, we had a nice dinner followed by junta and a celebration for Nick’s birthday complete with a birthday cake and candles. We’re trying to head to bed early because we know tomorrow will be another full day of tough terrain, cement work, and preparing gift bags for Vallecillo families. We hope everyone is surviving the snow in Iowa.
Fr. Cosgrove: While you were enjoying a spring snowstorm, the Honduran team was experiencing 126 degrees and very difficult trenching. The students here at the water project are not only doing a great deal of work, but also a wonderful job of making friends with the families of the village. This evening we shall celebrate Nick Wankum’s 18th birthday. It is a surprise, so don’t tell him. The party is a surprise, not the fact that he’s 18. Many of the students are surprised at just how fluent they are in Spanish. They all expect to be given A’s on their 4th quarter grade. After returning from the water project, a group of the men helped lay a concrete floor in a home of one of the villagers of Esquias. The Crusaders can be proud of their team members.
Becca Swalve: Becca, Sana, and Megan propose we will stay here as long as it is snowing in Iowa. We are enjoying the 127 degree weather so much! Nic and Bob- I used a pickaxe today and I worked it. Constance, tell the kids at Guardian Angel hi! Taylor, I miss you too; 5 more days! I really need a good back and head scratch. MUAH!
Mary Henrich: Thanks for the advice Dad! Please send a dozen frogs to Honduras, priority shipping preferred. We are enjoying this 125 degree weather while all of you are shoveling your driveways. I also broke a pickaxe today. Whoohoo! Also, please tell everyone at home that I miss them. Please have someone tell the track team that I miss them too.
Ashley Ellensohn: Tell everyone hi for me and that I miss them! Can’t wait to see everyone and tell them about everything. Tell Nate I’m craving a Bob’s tavern! <3
Matt and Mary Klein: Jim, Michelle, Nathan, and Emily- The food is very good here. We you’re not starving with Dad’s cooking. Our muscles are a little sorer tonight. We were surprised there was close to a 100 degree difference in temperature in Iowa and Honduras today. Love you, Matt and Mary
Brittney Tegels: Mom and Dad- this was definitely the right decision for me to make. I have been loving every minute of it. Best part of the trip so far was seeing Christin in Honduras! I miss you guys a lot (you too, Brent) and can’t wait to see you on Easter Sunday. Hello to all of my Minnesota loves- I hope there is no snow up there when I get back! Ranjani- don’t worry, I’m still alive and am planning on coming back to work Wednesday!
Carolyn Bickford: Jay, Miranda, Drew, Ali, and Mya, I hope all is well with everyone. Give Mya a big kiss from me. I miss all of you. Fabio, I know that Drew is probably keeping you busy with video games, but make sure to get all your homework done. Drew, please check on Pakka and Angel at some point to make sure they are doing fine, though Seivert has been checking in. I love you guys!