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Day four finds little hands to help with workload

Friday, August 10, 2012

Lipscomb Associate AD Brent High reports in from Honduras on day four of the Softball mission trip.

Day four has come and gone here in the mountains of southern Honduras. What a myriad of experiences today has brought. We spent another day at the worksite and actually reached a significant milestone when we finished loading in the fill dirt that brought the floor to level. I would estimate that we moved 350 cubic yards of dirt one wheelbarrow at a time between Wednesday and today. We had to reposition two piles of concrete mix one wheelbarrow at a time and we had to move all of the concrete mixing equipment and water reservoir by hand to the next level so we could finish loading in the fill dirt.

Once again, I can’t begin to describe to you the level of manual labor these girls endured over the past three days. Bear Bryant had Junction, Texas. The high school team made famous by the movie “Remember the Titans” had their camp near Gettysburg. It may be said after this season that the 2013 Lady Bison Softball team had San Marcos de Colon.

Once again, in between wheelbarrow loads, we did our best to strengthen relationships with the local children. We handed out another 50 Lipscomb jerseys and two gigantic bags of candy and still didn’t have enough. We gave them a new basketball to add to the soccer ball, football and baseball equipment we gave them over the last two days.

By today the girls started to know the kids and would call to them by name. Luis, Ricardo, Maria, Alan, Manuel and Enoch are absolute favorites.

We saw an amazing shift in the behavior of the kids today. For the first two days they would sit on the porch of the house across the street and watch us. They would play in the street and when we took a break would be quick to corral us into a game of one kind or another. Today they went to full on work right beside us. No one asked them to. The next thing we knew these kids who were probably 8, 9 and 10 years old were running wheelbarrows, shovels and five-gallon buckets alongside us. They completely re-energized our group and helped us complete our objective. Some in the group questioned if they were really angels.

We only had one truckload of dirt left to go when the bottom absolutely dropped out of the heavens and a grade-A Central American monsoon set in for a good hour. It ripped the concrete out of the street that some of the city workers had been putting in earlier in the day. I would guess that about four inches of rain fell in that hour. We sought shelter under the roof of the house across the street that hung over the porch. Very quickly the owner of the house invited us in and invited us to sit down on his couches. Then he brought out hot ears of corn for everyone. The hospitality from these people who obviously had next to nothing was very humbling and moving to all of us.

The rain let up enough for us to get all the dirt from the last load into the footprint of the house. It was a muddy, sloggy, slippery, inefficient process but we did it. There were dozens of people still sheltering from the rain along the street watching us work. I told the girls that they earned major respect points from the locals in that last push.

My personal biggest thrill of the day was having Juan, the foreman on the construction crew say to me, “Tu espanol es muy bueno!”

Tomorrow is going to be a much different day. We haven’t told the girls yet but we’ll go on a four-hour horseback trip to the top of a mountain to see the Mission Lazarus coffee plantation among other things.

Please continue to pray for us. Three extremely hard, labor-filled days in the books and still everyone is healthy and strong. We are all just very, very tired.

I can’t write one of these updates without expressing appreciation to all of the people who give their hard-earned money so these kind of experiences can happen. Thank you!

Blessings,

Brent