Tuesday, June 19, 2012

"I can do anything..."

by Keli Shipley
Intern at Porch de Salomon, Guatemala

"I can do anything through Christ who strengthens me." -Philippians 4:13

June 14th, 2012

bible study in Concepsion [same village where we are building a house for Olga]

all the children held up the masks that they decorated. the bible study lesson involved "the lost sheep"

adorable siblings under a piece of plastic to protect them from all the rain
June 15th, 2012
This was the group's last day in Pana and to start it off, some of us went zip lining through the mountains. It's relatively inexpensive and is set up so that there are 8 (i think?) different zip lines that you go across. You wear gloves (one of them having leather on it) and use the gloves to physically slow yourself down before the guides help unhook you.
Zip lining with Element 3! The place is about a ten minute drive away from Pana
area at the bottom of the zip line course
the starting point

Element 3 zip lining group!

harnessing up
almost all ready
at one of the 8 "take off" points

tons of bridges

beautiful scenery
elizabeth getting ready to go across one of the zip lines
here are my attempts at taking pictures while on the zip line. i may or may not have gotten in trouble for paying more attention to my camera and less attention to slowing myself down..

yes, i realize that this is upside down

After a morning of zip lining, the group packed up, grabbed some lunch, did some last minute shopping, and we headed to the docks [about a five minute drive].

trying to avoid the rain...
Pana from the lake 
Carl & Evan had to hold down the tarps over the luggage in the lancha
Our destination: La Posada Santiago [http://www.posadadesantiago.com/]
view from the lake

unloading the lancha
tons of stone buildings to stay in

where we all stayed. there is a dorm area on the top and then single rooms below for the married couples 
camp "element 3" as we called it haha

Lloyd's band played that night after we all enjoyed a wonderful dinner with fresh lemonade, beef curry, and homemade bread
Because I have become a grandma, I was in bed by 10:30 p.m. Guatemala has definitely turned me into a party animal...

After a delicious breakfast, we had to say goodbye to the Element 3 team. They were the most amazing group that I could have asked to have as my first "mission group" in Guatemala (and anywhere for that matter). They had such a wide variety of people coming from all different paths in life, but they all could come together with the mission of helping Olga's family and working in the medical clinics. I will miss them and hope to cross paths with them in the near future

loading up the van to go to the airport
After they left, we ended up staying a bit longer and enjoying the beautiful weather in Santiago. Side note: Because Guatemala is so close to the equator, the sun is so much stronger; therefore, always wear sunscreen...

star-shaped, reminds me of MC

beautiful landscaping

small grill area

stairs on the way to our lodge

palapa. you can order snacks and drinks or just lounge with a book

pool area was amazing

walking down towards the sauna

dock area

After a morning of relaxation, we travelled on a took-took to the dock and then a lancha to Pana. Was a little bumpy, but the trip back was a lot faster than the trip there.

Santiago Atitlan

supposedly where the Mayan's used to hide their gold
This week has been absolutely amazing and it was wonderful to spend the first part of my weekend with the Element 3 group at La Posada Santiago. I hope that all the other groups are as wonderful as this one and I hope to keep as busy as I did this past week. I enjoy feeling useful and keeping busy makes the time go a bit faster. In one way, I want the time to fly by so I can get back to my friends and family, but I also want to enjoy and appreciate the time while I'm in Guatemala, an opportunity I may not have again.