Sunday, April 26, 2009

Full Weekend

We have had a full weekend, and it doesn't stop here!  Yesterday was Dia de la Familia (Family Day) at school.  All of the families went to el campo (the country) for a retreat day together.  We played all kinds of games - kind of like field day in the USA.  We ate picnic lunches by the river, then played more games.  Had an AWESOME time with the other families from the school.  Got sunburned, of course.  Started the day out freezing and wearing sweaters and coats, in mid-day had to shed everything down to t-shirts and played in the river because we were burning up, then had to put on all of the layers again when the sun dipped behind the mountains.

Today, we went back to the country to Cochas Chica - a small rural community of less than 3000 (looks more like 300 to me).  Almost all of the families in this town are artisans.  We met a family in Cochas Chica a couple of weeks ago when we were visiting the area.  The whole family is Christian and they started a church in the middle of town.  They asked us to come and have lunch with them and talk about how to start a children's program / sunday school, and also to talk about some adult education / bible study things with them.

So out we went at noon today.  When we arrived, the whole family was there preparing to make pachamanca... a traditional Peruvian meal cooked in a pit in the ground with hot rocks.  We helped make humitas (sweet tamales), place all of the ingredients in the pit (potatoes, sweet potatoes, green beans, chicken, lamb, etc.), and spent the next couple of hours chatting and learning about gourd carving.  Pedro carves bible stories into the gourds and uses them to tell the stories and witness to others about Christ.  The food was great, the company was fantastic, and we have been invited to become part of their family... our family away from home, they said.  We visited their church and were invited back for a service Wednesday night - to teach and to share and to help them find new ways to learn the Bible.  Great day!

Tomorrow, it's back to Cochas Chica (after school and after Billy works with the Compassion kids) for a birthday party.  We have been invited to join in the celebration by another artisan family who is custom-carving some gourds for our mission agency.  Guess what's for lunch???  PACHAMANCA!!!