I’m writing this entry from the pool deck of the Apart-Hotel Presienté in Maracaibo -day 3 of our team’s adventure in Venezuela.
We arrived here on Tuesday night. The Millers -Brett and Krista (along with their 9 month old baby, Karina), along with 20 students from Vida Estudiantil (the group we’re working with) met us at the airport to accompany us into the city. What were now close to 40 of us crammed into a rusty, grey school bus from the 70s, and we careened down the hillside highway.
The scene was strangely dark as we stepped out of the bus on to the crumbling concrete in front of the Presidenté. Little did we expect to arrive during Venezuela’s national power rationing hour. (This happens every Tuesday and Thursday from 8 till 9, and used to be for 2 hours) We scrambled around in the darkness as we unpacked, and before long we were settled in.
The following morning a few of us went out to find breakfast with Brett and Krista.; they knew of a spot from when they used to live here where we could get fresh juice and taquenos (fried cheese). As we walked along the road (there were sidewalks, but no one really uses them) I noticed that in Maracaibo there are no gutters, no traffic lights or road-lines. Drivers
carefully press their way through intersections aided by their horns.
Yesterday, at our briefing, Brett outlined our work for the next 5 weeks. We learned that Vida’s staff leadership is moving back to the States in 2 months, and it’s going to be our job to raise up leaders for the ministry, in order that it can be self sustaining. Additionally, each Saturday we will be working in the community, serving in venues ranging from an orphanage to a local teen pregnancy clinic, and myself and 2 other students will be setting up an English workshop on the engineering campus (most students at the public universities do not have the money to get outside help dor thei English classes). But more on that later.
Anyway, ’till next time. Hasta luego, amigos!
Week One -Venezuela