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Ecuador, Day 1

March 5-6, 2008Today and last night were our time of travel as we (Doug, Greg, Cristina, Sam, Alex and I) began our journey to the people of Ecuador. Upon arrival, we were introduced to Guy Muse and his friend Paul, who taught us how most traffic laws are optional in Ecuador, but that you never want to injure another driver, as it´ll result in immediate jailtime. We were delighted to see how nice the hotel is that we´ll be staying at and wasted no time in dropping our bags (which all made it safely) off in our rooms to hit up the pair of hammocks beside the pool. We got a brief safety rundown with Guy (I probably won´t be bringing my camera along everywhere) and then were off to the mall for some dinner. Ordering was certainly clumsy at first, but was made easier with Sam and Alex ahead of me to put the cashier on his best behavior. We walked back to the hotel, stopping only at the very nice 'SuperMaxi' grocery store, and now have a fair amount of time to relax and prepare for orientation downtown in the morning. Even only so far, Cristina has been such a practical blessing to us - it´s helped so much to have a native along with us, although my Spanish appears to be coming back much better than I had expected it would. In our first few days we are most likely going to be helping out a newly targeted region of the city that a handful of the missionaries have only just begun to reach out to. I am excited to see how God will be using us in the coming days and am especially looking forward to seeing us grow together as a team.

p.s... I´m typing this up from my journal on a computer here at the hotel - I just was able to get some pictures transferred up to Flickr, so here's a couple:

Alex checking out the view from the plane: Alex checking out the view.

The view from the plane shows the flood-ravaged Ecuadorian countryside below: Floods cover the Ecuadorian landscape.

Greg is ready to go after arriving at our hotel: Yes, Greg?