Our First Day in the Mission
The first full day in San Lucas Tolimán was full indeed! From helping with breakfast, learning about the school, shopping in a local market, finding ice cream, and so much more, our girls are seeing, learning, and experiencing so much!
From the journal of Courtney:
After a very long travel day, we spent our first night here in San Lucas Tolimán and most were woken up by exotic birds and barking dogs. As instruction of last night, we were at breakfast 15 minutes early for our turn on dish duty! Haha! We had a good time though, washing and putting the dishes away. After breakfast, we spent our morning with Alex, she is the coordinator for the mission right now and she took us to four different sites where the mission does their work. First, we walked to the school where we stood in the courtyard and Alex told us how it started with Father Greg and answered some questions that we had about how the school is operated, they were doing some last minute construction on the school because the new school year will start on Monday so while we are eating breakfast the rest of the week, we will hopefully see the kids coming to school. We walked out of the school and packed into a small bus and drove down the narrow San Lucas roads that tend to be a bit scary for us since they tend to go very fast and close to the people walking down the road. Shortly, we arrived at the Women’s Center and we were welcomed by several women and Alex interpreted information that the women had for us about what goes on at the center and how the weaving process works and the different classes that are offered for the women, again we were able to ask the women questions with the help of Alex. Everyone seemed very excited that we were there and interested about their projects and we were able to go to the tiny store and look at the women’s work that was available for purchase, when we spend our day at the women’s center we will be able to purchase some of the things from there. We got back on the bus and headed to the health clinic, we were greeted by a man named Pablo, and he seemed to know how the clinic worked and we learned that the clinic can hold up to 33 patients at time, 10 men, 10 women, 10 pediatrics, and there is 3 maternity rooms. There is one main doctor named Dr. Tun. We didn’t get to meet him personally but he sees all the patients, but he does not do surgery. For surgery, teams of surgeons volunteer to come down to this clinic for about a week and in 4 and a half days, they do about 100 general surgeries. We toured the rest of the clinic and thanked Pablo, and headed to our last stop at the coffee facility. We went into a small building and met with a man who showed us around the coffee processing and the different types, we had a few minutes to spare before we headed back to the mission for lunch. We took walk up quite a steep dirt hill and saw where they turned the beans and the machine that “de-pulped” the coffee bean. So, got our pictures and headed back down to the bus, and went to eat lunch, which was some delicious chicken soup. Since it is Saturday the mission did not have any work for us to do and we didn’t have any activities planned so we decided to just walk around and get a better feel for San Lucas. Most of San Lucas is just on one long street so we walked and found a local ice cream stand and it definitely hit the spot, so we kept walking along the street markets and found a cemetery and were really fascinated by it and the tombs were all painted beautiful colors because they just celebrated All Saints Day. After the cemetery, we walked down to the lake, then eventually headed back up to the hotel for an hour of card games on the patio of our hotel. We decided we would try a restaurant tonight instead of eating at the mission. Another hotel in town had a really nice restaurant that overlooked the lake and it was so beautiful and the food was great. We took our time eating and sharing stories and it was a really nice night of talking and appreciating our experience here. We thank God for another beautiful day, and we are excited to see what tomorrow brings! -Courtney