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Monday, July 27, 2009

Leaving Roatán/Preparing for Qatar: 7/27/09

The house was presented to Hans and his Daughters. The presentation was put on by the community. Hans' family and friends set up chairs and sound equipment to sing and have a church service in a Spirit of gratefulness and celebration.
The hospitality was a great way to really soak in the community and feel the determination and power of the Islanders, something I had heard in Hans' speech and stories of the community.

They served us cold juices and fried empanadas while Hans opened up his new doors to allow the community to walk through the house. The gratefulness in the tears of Hans and the joy and excitement of his 2 daughters was congruent with the celebration and service before entering the house.

Hans gave a lovely talk before He unlocked the front door, mentioning the greatness of God and the grace he has learned in life. It was difficult for him to get through the presentation due to the fact that Daisy is now 20 days in the hospital. Hans' took the moment to share how God's plan for the human life is continuously in motion, it is perpetual. There is no time set or limit to who God is and what God's plan is.

Hans entering the house.
Hans will be waiting for his wife to choose the color of paint for the outside and the doors. 

The group left shortly after. Fortunately I bought my plane ticket to return a bit later, so I was able to return the day after to help Hans move in a bed and two dressers. During these movements he shared with me some moments during his Spiritual journey and relationship with God. My souvenir of encouragement was much needed. Daisy should be out of the hospital soon.

As I return I reflect on my time.

On the conflict in the mainland...

*An "open letter" from Roberto Micheletti, published as opinion in the Wall Street Journal.*

I have accepted the
job in Doha,
The English
Modern School has
a new Physical
Education Teacher.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Walls: 7/23/09

The walls are up. The roofing is almost complete. Tomorrow we will complete the roof and clean up around the site and prepare the house to present it to Hans and his two daughters. Unfortunately, Daisy will not be able to make it due to her gull stones and her surgery that is scheduled for tomorrow as well.

They have to take out some of the gull stones she was unable to pass.  She has been in the hospital for 16 days. Along with Hans and his daughters, we hope she is out soon.

*Tomorrow, Manuel Zelaya is also going to try and re-enter the country.*

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The Floor: 7/19/09

*It seems that interim President of Honduras, Roberto Micheletti, is not cooperating much with the plan of Oscar Arias (Costa Rica) in regards to the plan of the country and ousted Presidente Manuel Zalaya. I've read a bit and Hillary Clinton is threating with the proverbial USA Economic Sanction threat that implemented numerous times throughout Latin America*

The floor is in
Yesterday, for about an hour, we were able to get the floor installed. I acquiring a bit of construction knowledge At the pace we are going it looks like we will finish soon. After we finished last night we prayed with Hans and Daisy.

Tentative buildsI interviewed 6 families for tentative builds on the island.  The need is straong in most of the Colonias up in the hills and forests for housing. There is great tension between Islanders and the Mainislanders that have more recently come to the island. 

The main requirement that Alternative Missions  must comply to is that
the potential family must own the land and possess the relevant documentation.
All of the other details of family history, current situation, and need are solely for Dwellings and Alternative Missions.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Helene: 7/17/09

*This weekend and next monday there is a high possibility that movements and decisions will be made regarding the ousted president Manuel Zayala and his 2 friends Daniel Ortega (Nicaragua) and Hugo Chavez (Venezuela). Oscar Arias Sanchez (Costa Rica) will be mediating.  Meanwhile mainland Honduras will continue to see protests and conflicts as they discuss the return of Zayala. There is a  lot of talk about violations of human rights by the military regimes. In Roatán, however, all things are normal. Not too much protest or upheaval. It really notes that the divide between the Islanders and the Mainlanders is also political and social, not only geographic.*

Helene is seperated from Roatan by a canal. It is inhabited by islanders, no foreign merchants or resort tycoons, or bohemian caucasians tapping into the beach/island life. It is possible that a few mainlanders habitat the area.   From where we are at on the west end, an hour car ride then 45 minute boat ride (depending on weather), will get you to Helene.  This first picture is just one of my favorite little huts I saw hiking around the area.  It is home to some of the most pristine reef, coral, fishing, snorkeling, and diving in the world.

The highlight was swimming with these kids on the public dock.  Impressive swimmers for their age.

This is Alternative Missions medical center and cabins.  Dierdre is the Head Nurse/Surgeon/Doctor/Dentist.  She went down as just a Nurse, does incredible work and says she has done things she never would have thought she would do as a nurse. The first floor has all the medical stuff and the second floor is rooms for staff and visiting groups.  The very top deck is a prayer deck.  The bi-lingual school is just down the steps from here.

This last one is a Conch shell I found on the beach, was going to keep it, but it smelled horrible and stunk up my hands before lunch. My bag carries the smell well.  The people walking behind me could smell the trail of stench I left behind. They mistook it for horse manure or the cows.

While in Helene I got to talk quite a bit with a missionary, Jeremy, from Alternative Missions. Jeremy introduced me to Dierdre (Nurse/Doctor) and Dominique, the director of the bi-lingual school in the area.  They shared how they got involved, how they feel about their current situations, insights on the Island life, their connection with Alternative Missions and their perspectives on community life. 

The construction group arrived yesterday. They will be completing their diving certification first. Once they finish their certification we will start the official build of the house.  Today we finished up nailing and screwing in joints and joists to the posts, and now its ready for flooring then walls.

We hope for good weather to finish the build while also hoping that Hans' wife Daisy improves in regards to her health.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Building an Island house: 7/15/09

The Introduction:

floor framing.  We like to say that it is "island" level.

forgot the name of those gadgets, how about board holders. I like to nail them into place.

So there was no where to rent a chainsaw. An American immigrant that used to hire them out plainly said that Islanders always forget to mix the gas and oil which ends in the ruin of a chainsaw. Therefore he quit renting them. Disregarding the brash comment we called it a day.

We woke up hoping we would find a chiansaw. We were looking for a tree cutters house, Mark, when we encountered "Johnny the Tree man" (that is the formal name he gave us). He was walking on the beach when we asked him for directions. He asked us why we were going to Mark's house. We said chainsaw, and he said, "I'm who you want."

He was Mark's chainsaw man and Mark wasn't home. To be honest our group was hesitant due to the consistent pulls of rum Johnny took from the little bottle conveniently held in his back pocket, but his job was well done. Despite his bad eye, which he told us after, and his rum buzz we had our tree posts cut.  Quite a convenient and temporary intervention for both Johnny and our group, at least economically speaking. A blessing saturated in cheap island rum!

The posts were in before we got there thanks to Hans and his brother in-law, the two Islanders the house will be for. Big and uneven yet manageable with Johnny the tree man.
Hans has a wife named Daisy. She has quite a few of health problems due to her diabetes.
Tomorrow I will go to St. Helene where the school and nurse's center is for the less developed island.

We will await the construction crew to come and guide us in the completion of the house in a few days.  They say St. Helene is an island of great poverty.  This is determined on the fact that there are no hotels and no electricity. 

Very early I have an interview at 5:30am my time, 6:30am your time.
It is via Skype with a school in Doha, Qatar. An interview during an "interview." 

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Roatan, Honduras 7/14/09

I am currently being bombarded by bugs on a porch in Roatan, Honduras. This beats Summer School. In a way it is still school. From hear on out I continue my education in different forms and fashions.

This course is Beauty 101: A study on the simple and Colonized

It is beautiful place.  An ideal place to be focusing reflecting inside and unlearning on the out.

God has all things, the whole world, in his hands.
love these bugs.

A biblical text from from the book of Philipians on worry has been a nice tool currently. My ability to be patient is below mediocre, pretty lowsy. But hope prevails. The words from the text it has bring me peace for the moment. It mentions a peace that "transcends all understanding."