I, Larinda, was very blessed by a dear friend who provided me the opportunity to go on a medical boat down the Amazon river two weeks ago as a translator. Roger was our translator last year when the family was here. He is now in charge of coordinating the medical trips with a ministry called Amazon Hope. He said it was truly God working, because he usually has a lot of difficulty bringing in new translators. And wow, it was definitely a blessing from God. It was actually an answer to prayer on my part, and a reminder of God's faithfulness to supply not only our needs, but also our desires (when we are in His will). So 3 days before leaving, Roger asks me if I want to go on a medical trip as a translator...I was so ecstatic and amazed the opportunity. It was a 10 day trip with a medical team from Scotland. Every morning we would sail to a different village and see patients till lunch time, then sail to another village and see patients till supper. The first couple days were hard for me as a translator. I learned quickly though, cause I had to! Medical terms don't come into everyday conversation after all. :P But thankfully I had lots of help from the other 3 translators (Peruvians) who are very experienced with medical translators. By the end of the trip we had seen over 2,500 patients and had visited over 20 villages down the Amazon river! I learned more Spanish in those 10 days than I have in the last month! I also learned a lot medically. For instance, I got to see 6 ultrasounds and 2 minor tumor removal surgeries....also learned a lot about diagnosing parasites, flu, minor aches and pains, cough, and pterigion (very common!). Lots of cases of all those! I was blessed with the fellowship of hearty Scottish doctors and nurses, and made many new Peruvian friends too. It was truly a blessing from God, and I hope God allows me to someday return as a translator again! When we returned from the river, Lindsey joined us to tour a medical clinic in the poorest (and most dangerous) part of Iquitos. It was encouraging to see the needs being met, but also sad because of the needs that aren't able to be met because of lack of funds. We also visited a boys home about an hour down river from Iquitos. It is a safe haven for endangered boys, who are given shelter, clothing, food, education, work, and Bible teaching. Amazon Hope (the medical boat), the clinic, and the boys home are all through a ministry called Union Biblica (Bible Union). What a blessing they are being to those here! I thoroughly enjoyed and was very blessed being a part of that blessing.
So now, Lindsey and I are preparing to head home...bittersweet! I am excited to see everyone and to begin preparing to go to Moody Bible Institute in January. But I will miss many people here, who have become like family. Monday we had a "clausura" with my English students (end of class party). I am grateful to have had the opportunity to teach, and was blessed by my students. I probably learned more than they did! :D Also, very thankful to Lindsey for taking over my classes while I was on the medical trip. She did great and the students loved her!
Now, our days are filled with packing and goodbyes. What a blessing these four months have been. I have learned profoundly and grown in all ways possible (yes, even physically....it's called a rice belly here :P haha) I am eternally grateful that God provided this time here. And now I am looking forward to what God has in store for the future!
Lindsey here. I suppose I'll let you in on what I've been doing the past few weeks... as you know Larinda went on a 10 day medical trip as a translator. While she was gone I was stuck here at MEPI. ok... not stuck... but here :-D When we first started talking about Larinda going on the trip we were saying how she would have to end her English classes 2 weeks early... but then some of the Peruvians kept saying Lindsey can teach have Lindsey teach. I of course said no! cause I've never taught before and felt I wouldn't be able to do it. But with a little encouragement I said I'd do it. Larinda left on Sunday and I started teaching Tuesday. I was nervous just thinking about it :-)... but Larinda planned the classes and I just had to teach what she planned so that made it a whole lot easier. :-D After the first two days I got use to it and actually enjoyed teaching :-D I loved seeing the students improve in what they were learning. my days went by super fast... to fast in fact. I'd study in the morning and before I knew it it was time to teach. after teaching I'd either study more or play volleyball then Church at night. I was also at the Adams (American missionaries who live a 2 minute walk away) house a lot. Kaitlyn (the Adams daughter) had fun making different foods and playing games :-D The Peruvians always teased me saying every night I cry myself to sleep since Larinda isn't here. ALL the time haha. So thats pretty much what I did while Larm was gone... she gave you the update on what we've been doing since she's been home :-D
it's awesome... the first time I came here I thought how sad it was that we couldn't joke around in Spanish... or that they don't joke around as much in Spanish... but man do they joke! I love it. I've learned so much more Spanish... and I love being able to understand another language without even thinking about it! I've studied a lot here and am looking forward to not studying while at home :-P Like Larinda said... we're packing to head on home and it's very bittersweet... Time is flying by fast! but honestly I can't wait to see you all! :-D