Well, tomorrow is the big day! I'm finally as packed as I'm going to get with one big fat suitcase and one shoulder bag. Not bad for me, since, historically, a week in Puerto Vallarta requires two decent size suitcases and a shoulder bag. El Salvador is about getting dirty and maybe getting a few blisters to go along with the dirt. Now that I'm done with work for the week, I'm pretty excited about going. I'll try to blog and post pictures occasionally. I'll be back on the 26th. See you then!
On Tuesday, I've been asked to give a reflection at our team meeting in El Salvador about Community and Culture. I'm bringing a picture I found in my parents' things of the whole Highland Ladies Aid and am going to talk about that. I think I'm related in some way to about half of them. When I think of the phrase "It takes a village to raise a child" I always think of the church ladies at our little country church. They were the ones who taught Sunday School, kept the church fed, made the world relief quilts and generally were kind of the soul of the church. The picture looks like it was taken in about 1994 or so. Sadly, so many of the women, including my mom are gone now. Pretty incredible, but I'm going to pay tribute to them on this trip. I know they would approve, though they wouldn't want such a fuss made over them.
I had a strange dream last night in which my dad appeared. It was one of those oddly disconnected dreams with no particular linear action. In it, my dad was old and not well. It seemed like we were taking him from place to place, yet he was too ill to be taken there. At one point he fell down and I got down and held him. He told me he was ready to go. I told him that was okay and that I loved him. Remarkably (for my dad) he told me he loved me too. It was strange and sad. It seemed like we wanted to keep him around longer than he wanted to be around. I guess maybe that is the message- that he was indeed ready to go when he left us this summer. I really miss him and have been struggling to come to terms with the end of the story of my parents. I'm choosing today to think that this dream may have been a little gift from him.