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Honduras Adventure: Day 1

October 6, 2011

The start of a trip is always exciting as you realize the day you’ve been carefully planning and preparing for has finally arrived. Saturday, October 1st started at the church at 6:00 am as we loaded our luggage on the bus, circled up for prayer and were ready to hit the road. That’s about the time I realized I couldn’t find my wallet. Or passport. A trip isn’t really an adventure until something goes wrong, so I like to do what I can to contribute to the excitement. After a small round of panic and some desperate searching, I found them both tucked safely away in my carry on, just where they should be. Once we got that out of the way, surely nothing else could go wrong, right? So off to the airport we went.

Our team at the airport ready to fly.

The rest of our travel went without a hitch. Well, except for the airplane being delayed takeoff by about 45 minutes. Fortunately everyone inside was in good spirits and already spending time bonding as a mission team. We arrived in Tegucigalpa and started through security. A few lucky souls got to open their bags for a random inspection, but we all made it through eventually.

Arrived in Honduras with all our luggage.

Shortly thereafter, our Honduras Outreach team leader, Marta, came and greeted us. I had met Marta on my previous trip to Honduras and was glad to catch up again. She has a genuine spirit that makes you feel like you’ve been a part of her family for years, even if you’ve just met her. She gathers us all up like a mother hen and affectionately calls us her babies. “Are you ready my babies? Vamonos!”

This is when we get to the real joy of the journey as we cram 14 people and just as many bags into the two HOI vehicles. Normally luggage travels on top of the cars, but because of the pouring down rain, they are gracious and stuffed it all inside. We pack in like sardines and get ready for the 3-hour drive to Juticalpa. This really is one of my favorite times of a mission trip, because not only do the close quarters add to the bonding fun, but it’s always so telling to watch everyone’s reactions as they get the first taste of a new country. The rain was pouring down and the traffic was tight. Just outside of the airport we come to an intersection where cars and buses are lined up, waiting to turn left. But in Honduras there are no traffic lights. There really aren’t even any lanes, so trying to turn left in what I assume was rush hour…took a bit of patience. I think we literally stayed glued to our spot for at least 45 minutes until a police officer came out and started to help the flow. Flexibility is truly the key to any mission trip, and so many other things in life. It came in especially handy here. Luckily we had plenty to entertain us while we waited and people-watched. There’s always so much to take in and experience that you don’t want to miss a thing.

Several hours later we arrived at the hotel in Juticalpa. At dinner I asked the group what their first impressions were of Honduras, and the unanimous response was taking in the beauty of the country. The picturesque mountains were nestled in the background of the cityscape, and the clouds billowed around gently covering the peaks. Cathy closed our day with a devotional reading from 1 Thessalonians 1:6 “And you become imitators of us and of the Lord, for in spite of persecution you received the word with joy inspired by the Holy Spirit.” Truly the Holy Spirit was and is with us, guiding us safely on our journey and preparing our hearts for what we would soon encounter. We reminded ourselves of the meaning behind this mission trip, and how our love and praise of the Lord will be shown through our actions to one another. It was a peaceful end to our first day of travel, and after a card game of Phase 10 and a lot of laughter, we drifted off to sleep.

One Comment leave one →
  1. October 6, 2011 2:04 pm

    Thanks for posting this! Took me back to the blessings of the Nica trip last year—–especially the awesome plastic seats! On a more serious note, I too remember the beauty of the land, the people and a God that created and sustains it all is amazing!

    We all look forward to the stories yet to be told!

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