Family Alive

Brian, Kristine, Analise, and Josiah Toone

Nica Notes (Sunday Jan 4th)

4th January 2009

We’re doing well here in Nicaragua.  It’s quite an adventure experiencing this place that’s so dear to my heart with the little ones.  Actually, it’s hard and very different.  But it is so wonderful to be here, and we’ve had some great experiences so far, and I know there are many more to come this next week.

Friday, we traveled with Andrew and Jane Longley and their 2 kids the same age as ours, the directors of Nuevas Esperanzas, up the main well-paved road, onto a dirt road, then onto a road that I’d barely consider a road with our 4 wheel drive.  Then we reached a rural farm where we parked the car I was driving.  We piled into the Land Cruiser truck, 3 in the front, and 3 adults/3 kids in the back to drive up a barely passable rocky ravine, that is actually called a road to take us further up the side of the volcano Telica.  Nuevas Esperanzas has worked with a small primitive rural village up on the volcano to help them build rainwater collection tanks, because they don’t have access to drinking water on top of the volcano.  These people normally travel 2 hours down the rocky “road” on horseback to fill 2-30gallon jugs and bring them back for their water use, or the women trek down the mountain to do their laundry in the springs.  Amazing.
We bumped and bounced up the “road” that Nuevas Esperanzas is helping them “pave”, which means hand-mixing cement (after hauling up huge bags of cement and sand on horseback) to put between the big rocks of the road.  It’s already made a huge difference for these people in being able to get the beans and avocados they grow down to the main road to be taken somewhere to sell.  They used to joked that they grew avocados, but by the time they reached the bottom they were guacamole!   They’ve done several sections of road already, but they are hoping to find the funding to do several more in the future.

When got as far as we could go (though Andrew said he could drive the rest of the way, but we’d never make it in the back!), we piled out of the truck and hiked 1.5 miles up the volcano to see the village and have lunch in the school.  It was quite a huge undertaking with the kids, but they did really well.  The people are so wonderful, and it’s amazing to see the tank and to know what a difference it’s made.  Nuevas Esperanzas is hoping to find the funding to do many more smaller tanks at various houses, letting the locals do the construction themselves now that they’ve completed the large one at the school themselves.  It’s amazing what we take for granted when we turn on the faucet to rinse an apple or brush our teeth.

Ok, enough chatter.  The kiddos are getting restless with their movie, so I’d better sign off.  Please keep us in your prayers, especially for grace and patience with each other and the kids as we try to dive in and experience this beautiful place.  Thank you so much for sharing in our journey back here!

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