Tuesday, October 06, 2009

So far, so good!

My parents and I arrived in Ecuador at about 3pm on Tuesday the 22nd of September and were met at the airport by Ismael and his family. Our friend, Corey drove us all to my apartment in El Recreo and we unloaded our suitcases (all nine, most of which were only ounces under the 50lb weight limit) from the truck and carried them upstairs.

And since we had the entire afternoon and evening left, we went ahead and got to work on the apartment. We went to a store about ten minutes away in Durán that’s kind of like a combination Super Wal-Mart/Home Depot sort of place. We found pretty much everything we needed-paint, brushes, rollers, light bulbs, cleaning supplies, dishes, glasses, and a little table and chairs. We went back home (aww…home J) which was easily the most uncomfortable truck-ride my mom and I have ever had. We were crammed into the cab of the truck, I was on her lap, there was only enough leg-room for probably half of one skinny leg. And there we were. My dad and Ismael rode in the bed of the truck with our purchases.

The next day we started painting, which made me soooo happy. The apartment had been painted (badly) in a lovely shade of orange and accented brilliantly with green on every pillar. (Look at my face. I am clearly disgusted by the walls.) I agreed to a rental contract on this apartment only after being assured I would be allowed to re-paint it. I am convinced that if I woke up every day in a green and orange apartment, I would be a very angry person on the inside. Anyway, needless to say…

And the painting went well. We borrowed a ladder from Gregorio’s mom (the lady I lived with from April to July) and got the whole place painted in two days. NO MORE ORANGE AND GREEN!!

Over the course of the next few days we were able to get everything I would need to live and work in my new place-furniture, food, stove, refrigerator, dresser, desk…we (my dad and Ismael)

hung shelves, curtains, and pictures, fixed my leaky sink (haha), and we taught Ismael how to play Rummikub! We had a really fun time together, and I’m really glad mom and dad got to come here and spend time in my new home, with the people I love here.

My new place is beautiful! I love cooking in my new kitchen, and I love having breakfast at my new table every morning, I love sweeping my new floors and making my new bed and washing my new dishes in my new sink. I love my furniture that’s so comfortable on which to sit and read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

(which was an incredible end to an excellent series all about faith and love and friendship and sacrifice and unity and fighting for what’s good and true. Indescribable! Thanks, Paddy).

I love it here! I love that it’s not orange and green. I love that it’s really safe and that my landlords are really nice. I love that my friends can come visit me.

There is only one thing that I do not love. I do not love the other tenants. They are dirty and gross. GROSS! One of them came in my apartment last night…TOTALLY UNINVITED! It was an outrage!! He squeezed in through the crack in the cement at the bottom of my back door and hid under the bed. Ismael immediately came to my rescue when I called (what a wonderful fiancé I am blessed with!) and after about ten minutes of making lots of noise and prodding under the bed with a broomstick to scare him, my unwanted guest made for the door. But he didn’t make it in time. Ismael bashed him in the head with the broom….

Yes, I admit, it made me a little disturbed to watch him die…but anything that poops in my room has got to go-bottom line. He will bother me no more. I hope the others will be too terrified to try and invite themselves in. One can hope, right? Wish me luck with that.

In less-gross news, this week I am talking with all the University Project students who now have sponsors (thank you, sponsors), to let them know they now have financial support for their studies. I talked with Becsy this morning. She is so excited! She got a little emotional when I showed her the video we showed at DFCC a few weeks ago. She didn’t know I had used her story to share the vision of this project. She was so touched when I told her she has a sponsor now. She seemed really moved that someone from so far away who she had never met would care enough about her to help change her future. I think God is doing a great thing through this project, and I feel really privileged to be a part of it.

Please keep all the University Project students in your prayers. And please keep me in your prayers as I adjust again to life here. I think I will be all right here…after all…I am not alone….Horatio Caine, you never let me down!!