So anyway we took a 4 hour bus ride yesterday and arrived in the bustling city of Manta, right on the coast as well. We are staying with a family that moved to Ecuador in November from the states, with two little boys and all. They are the picture of what I envision a family with Matt might be like on this side of the system...mom home schools them herself, service all the time, and a couple beach days throughout the week. They're an awesome family putting Jehovah first and they have been so encouraging to us.
Tomorrow we are planning on travelling to the hall in Crucita, a beach town about 50 minutes north. It's known for its handgliding and parasailing and beautiful beach. We also hear their spanish hall has only two elders and one is just learning Spanish. (This has been the big challenge, finding an area in need of help with their territory and in a place that suits us and our budget!) One thing we're learning though, is that December is the absolute worst time for a gringo to find a good deal on a rental in a beach town. December starts their summer and holiday season when everyone flocks to the beaches. So prices get jacked way up up until about early mid January or so IF you can even find places that haven't been rented yet!
So that's that! I can't lie, the last few days have been a little rough emotionally. It's been difficult even wanting to write about anything, because it means having to process my stress and anxiety even more. Matt keeps encouraging me to write though since this is, after all, a documentation of our story with all its ups and downs. Sigh. And perhaps by sharing with you all the "lows" of getting situated in a foreign country, you can triumph with us when we finally figure things out. When I start to panic, I search deep down (usually after some prayer) for that feeling, that belief (that usually hides in the shadow of anxiety and hmm, prolly some hormones haha) that Jehovah's GOT this, he's GOT us and as long as we keep grasping his hand, He'll never let us go.
I miss you guys. You (our congregation and family and friends) are always on our minds and we really enjoy sharing this experience with you.
Here's some photos from Olon...
What you see while walking through Olon, stray dogs and donkeys:)
Here we are with Ian, the son of a couple that was helping us find a place to live. He is the sweetest little boy. ALTHOUGH, we had very differing opinions on spiders. He would just stick his hand in the middle of a huge web and grab a fist of it and chase me around while trying to wipe all that spider/web goodness on my shirt. What a sweetie pie:/