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Smile!

Colombia: 7/28/06, Fri.

7:00 A few key phrases from our team:

"Aldo, don't look!" - Due to the horrible traffic, and whatever else we can think of (such as Pastor John rinsing off after swimming).

"Neil Diamond?!? Let me rephrase that - Neil Diamond???" - The name triggers the best-hidden musician and dancer in Pastor John, and this was Aldo's reply on hearing Pastor John's favorite artist.

"Skit-Scat!" followed by, "Crrrap!" - The former meaning you've won, and the latter meaning you're sunk.

"Before I could not sleep with B.J. giggling, and now I can't sleep without her giggling!" - Said by Pastor Fabian, who went to bed before I did.

Today is rainy, with low-hanging clouds. You can't see more than 2 miles, maybe less, unless you're looking downhill. The caretakers of the house pulled our clothes off the line at some point. We'll need to thank them!

Last night, Pastor Wilson gave us 5 women some beautiful T-shirts! (The rest of the group will get theirs tomorrow night when we have our meeting there.) They say on the front, "God Bless You COLOMBIA," and on the back they have Isaiah 60:18 in Spanish: "Y sera llamada tierra de salvacion y adoracion a Dios" ("...You will call your walls Salvation and your gates Praise.")

We're almost to the school, to do the same thing as yesterday with fewer classes. I hope this muscle on my left shoulderblade relaxes soon! (I think I slept on it wrong.)

11:45 We got to visit some of the Primary classes, including one pre-kinder class, and then we talked to 2 classes of teens. I got to give my own testimony to the 2nd.

4:50 p.m. We went shopping, and I bought several items as gifts, and a necklace for myself. Then we went back to the house. It was still cool & drizzly, so I wasn't planning to swim. But Crhistian convinced me by getting in the pool himself.

Edit: By this time, we were becoming good friends. He went with us almost everywhere, since he doesn't have a job and has time to spare. And he kept asking me questions about my life, my husband, etc., and sharing interesting stuff about Colombia. So another opportunity to talk with him and have some fun could not be passed up!

The swim was good for me - my back & neck no longer hurt. I also got to hear some funnies about Colombian culture through the generations!

5:30 We'll be leaving for home groups soon. I think I'll be with Brian & Laura.

While swimming, Crhistian asked me for $20 (U.S. dollars) to fix his bike, since he doesn't have a job. I told him I was holding some for Pastor Lucho and some for our cook. But while showering afterward, I really felt that he should have it.

So I pulled him aside just now and told him so, and gave him 40,000 pesos (about $17.00). He hugged me, and told me I was going to have wonderful children, who would fill my house and heart with joy. I know I did the right thing in this, even if it only leaves me 15,000 pesos for the cook. Crhistian is a great guy.

6:10 There's a billiard's game called Carambola. There are no pockets on the table. You have 3 balls: 2 white and 1 red. You start wtih one, and you have to hit both of the others. If you do, you get a point, and go again with the ball you started with. If you only hit one, your opponent has to start with the ball you missed. If you miss both, your opponent starts with the same ball you used. They usually play to 10 points.

It's crazy to watch Pastor John miss; he's incredibly competitive, and gets so emotional! Crhistian has been playing for years, and John just learned the game, but John has already beat him twice.

9:45 Our home Bible study went really well. Norma (Pastor Lucho's wife) 'directed', I kinda led the songs, and Laura translated for her husband Brian. There were about 12 people there, and 6 of them were new! We're not sure if any got saved tonight, but it was still neat.

Afterward we had a good talk with Norma back at their apartment over the Church building, until the rest of the groups arrived. When the bus came I sat in back next to Jose Jr., and we had a very good talk about dating. I think it is very possible that either he'll come back to Colombia, or a certain girl will go to the U.S.! He's very mature emotionally & spiritually for his age. (He's almost 19.)

For tomorrow's women's conference, Laura & I will split the translation for Sharlla. I'll start, and Laura will finish. And we can help each other with words.

Breakfast is at 8:00, so I'm setting the alarm for 6:30. I keep thinking about my new friendship with Crhistian. He's 21, already a music leader in the new Church, with a big heart for serving God. He's a lot of fun to be around, too. He's the kind of guy I would want to lean on should something terrible happen to Dave. He's a friend for life. It's going to be very hard to leave on Sunday.
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