Peru 2015- The Journey there (October 11,2015) 

On October 11th 2015, I left with a team of seven other people to go on an adventure to serve the Lord. We began our journey with fresh coffee and a flight from Cleveland to Dallas and then into Lima, Peru. 

All flights ran as scheduled and all team members where excited for the moment we touched down in Lima. We rushed to our confirmed flight to Trijllo, Peru. 

NOTE: I said “confirmed flight” at least that’s what the email said just a week earlier. 

So, baggage in hand and clear of customs we stood asking “what do you mean we have no flight?!” The team paused and took a moment to process the fact that we are in Peru and now had no ride to our destination a good 9.5 hours away. 

We (a team mate and I) had researched bus fare and locations as well as airfare while booking flights. So, the team piled into a taxi and when I say taxi I mean a van with two rows of seats. Eight people and fourteen pieces of luggage go screaming off in a Peruvian taxi into Lima traffic. Traffic that puts traffic in every other place I have been to shame. The rules about speed and right of way are mere suggestions, and no one is looking for any suggestions. Just tons of cars, buses, and semis all trying to get where they need to be before anyone else can get there. Have I mentioned I get motion sick pretty easily? A fast twenty minutes later we are at the Plaza Norte bus depot and mall! This place is huge. 

  
Thanks to the amazing cab driver and the friendly people at the Ittza Bus company we get bus tickets for eight. Two hour wait and 9.5 hour bus ride through and up the beautiful desert/ coast area of Peru we arrive at Casa de Monica. The women who’s house we will stay at for the next 7 days.

I have never felt more welcome or more at home so far from home. These nice ladies cooked for us every day and cleaned up after us. (We did our best to pitch in with dishes and may have gotten a great recipe  or two.)

  

We got settled into our new home and got ready for a busy day of ministry work, breakfast is at 7:30am. 

Airport cafe- Next part of the journey

I am so sad to leave the beautiful country I have called home for over a month on this journey. The friends I have made are sure to be life long friends. Our connection to eachother is amazing. We can hardly understand eachother at times, yet we have enjoyed every moment we were together.

I’m sitting here alone drinking my cafe Americana in the Chinngis Khann international airport. The rest of my team is sitting and chatting for what will be one of the last times we see eachother. I am sitting and thinking of what this trip has changed in me. I honestly don’t know yet. When I came I had a list of expectations. Some crazy and some realistic. Some have been met, some have not and many of my experiences have exceeded my expectations a thousand times over.

I have learned I don’t know anything about the language I have spoken my whole life. Yet, I am able to teach it. I have learned that pride is the deepest darkest of all the sins and faults. It is a daunting foe and rises when it is least expected. Most the time it’s so subtle I can only see it when God reveals it to me in our secret conversations held deep in my mind. Despite my faults God can and will use me in any manner He chooses. I’m just blessed to sit back and watch my Father weave the majestic tapestry He graciously allows me to be a thread in.

The things I am discovering I am capable of with Him running the show continually take my breath away. I never in a thousand years would have thought I would have spent my summer as I just have. People say trips like this change you forever. And I know that I have been changed. I can’t put my finger on the exact points of transformation. But, I know I have been altered by God, I have been influenced by an amazing culture and I have been adopted by some amazing people.

It’s my birthday today. And even though my family is far away and it will still be a few days before I see them. I have a new family here who has blessed me and made me feel loved and cared for. My room mates blessed me with a bed full of balloons and streamers! That was a cute thing to wake up too. And my students made picture collages and posted birthday wishes on Facebook for me. I sit in the airport in tears. Sad for one part of my life to end but happy to return home. I feel as though I am a part of two different worlds that can’t exist at the same time.

I know this is not the “end” of one thing and the beginning of another, it is simply a cup of coffee in an airport waiting for the next leg of the journey…