language school · mission-update · nicaragua

#1: First Two Weeks of Language School

This post was an email update that was sent out during my time spent in Nicaragua from 2009 to 2011. I started posting them here when some of my friends who had not received them, wanted to see and hear about the work there. You can access an entire list here.

Greetings to one and all of my dear friends and family far and wide. Blessings to you as you continue to serve the Lord wherever He has called you. No matter where you may be, God is there. He is the same God of yesterday, today, and tomorrow. His love is never-ending, His mercies are new every morning.

God is has been so great as we have been serving Him from day to day in Esteli, Nicaragua. We left Malpaisillo Monday morning at 9:00 and headed to Esteli. We were not far from Esteli when we got into a traffic jam, due to bands marching in remembrance of Nicaragua’s Independence Day. We went around the jam and got some interesting rides through the back woods of the town. Once we arrived in Esteli, we went to Los Pipitos and met Yocanda, who took us to see the available host places. We decided to stay with Dora Elena Gonzales, a widowed lady. We dropped our luggage off there and then we as a staff went to Tip Top for lunch before going to see a waterfall nearby.

At the waterfall on the outskirts of Esteli

We spent time there. We took some pictures and Richard, Davy, and Krista were trying their hand at skipping stones. They then took us back to Dora Elena’s and we said good-bye for 2 weeks.After they left, we headed to the nearby Cyber to check email and talk to family. We spent an hour there before coming back for supper.

Tuesday morning came and it was time to get and get ready for classes. We had breakfast then off to catch a taxi and on our way to school. We got to school kinda early, so we spent time looking up common things and finding out the Spanish word for them. Tuesday Karen and I were in a class together. That day was spent telling her all about our families. It was quite interesting considering we hardly knew any Spanish. We relied on our electronic dictionaries far a lot of help that day. After break, we took the bus partway down Central Street and stopped at a little bread shop and Yocanda bought some bread to take home and bought us each a muffin to eat. The muffin was very good. We spent the rest of our class period walking along the street with Yocanda pointing out different things to us and telling us the names of them in Spanish. Yocanda took us to our house and we took a nap that afternoon. After supper that night, we spent time studying what we had gone over in class that day.Wednesday morning and it is time once again to get up and head to school once again. We were once again in a class together; this time learning about parts of the body. After break, we walk to the market and spend the rest of the class period walking through the market finding out the name of all the different fruits and vegetables. She bought us each a little purple fruit that you peel back the skin and sucked on it till all was left was the seed. We separated at the supermarket. Yocanda continued on her way home and we went into the the market and picked up a few things that we needed. We walked home and had lunch, then off to bed we went for a nap before getting up and getting ready to go out to supper with Yocanda, Marlene, Steven, and Elizabeth.

Supper at the Chinese Restaurant

We went to a Chinese restaurant for supper to celebrate Steven’s completion of Spanish classes. While we were there, the lights went out for a while. The waiters brought candles to all of the tables to shed a little light around. By the time we got our food, the lights were back on. We all had a great evening there.

Thursday morning: off to another day of school. We started out the morning in separate classes. My teacher was Yocanda and she started by pointing to different objects in the room and saying the name in Spanish. At break, we spent the time to walk through “Los Pipitos” a facility for handicap children and adults. “Los Pipitos” is located on the same grounds as the school. We were able to see all the different shops that are there – candle shop, carpenter shop, painting shop, and such. The children that are capable work in these different shops. There is a little store there were you can purchase the items that are made by the people of “Los Pipitos”. After break, we were once again in classes together as Yocanda was not feeling well. She left and Marlene took over the classes for the rest of the day. We went over common sayings, words, and greetings for the rest of the class period. After class was over, we got a taxi home and I was not feeling very well so I spent the afternoon sleeping. We spent the evening studying around the table. Friday,we spent half of the class time at school and the other half at La Casita-the little house.

The kitchen at La Casita

We walked through there learning new Spanish words and enjoying the scenery very much. We then sat down at a table and went over the new words and learned a couple new things. Then home we went to have lunch and study. We studied in the afternoon before walking to Mocha Nana Cafe for some coffee. We spent the evening studying.
Sunday morning we spent time in the park studying the Sunday school lesson after which we went for a walk before coming back to the house for lunch. The park was very busy at that time of the morning. There were people everywhere and it was very interesting to watch every one of them. There were several people there that had battery operated cars for the children to ride. They were kept quite busy all morning. The children were in the glory riding in circles that some forgot to watch where they were going and would almost run into the stage, a bench, or a unobservant person. There was also walking vendors that would stop at the park to adjust the items that they were selling, such as the guy in the photo to the right. His goods were all out of shape when he got to the park, so he spent quite a bit of time reorganizing them nicely.

Selling toys in the park

Our week at school was pretty normal for me. I need to remind myself daily that this is the day the Lord hath made. Whatever and however the day goes, is just what He has for me. I am one that is used to being somewhere on time and having a structured classroom setting, but I am in a different place and culture where it is not so. Class might only start at 9:00 instead of 8:00. Classes are different from what I expected. I am not totally sure what I was expecting, to be honest, but then again I remind myself that the time is the Lord’s. My homework all week was to take a verse from the Bible and explain it to my teacher in Spanish. It was very stretching, but my prayer was that the Lord may use that as a way of witnessing to my teacher. The last part of the week was spent on studying a lot of irregular verbs.

I thought that coming back to El Terrero this weekend would make it hard to go back to Esteli on Monday, but I can’t wait to get back and get back into school. I want to be able to talk the language and in with time, the Lord will give me the utterance and knowledge to speak Spanish. I can definitely say, I am starting to understand more than I could 2 weeks ago.

We had decided to come home this weekend, so Thursday, I asked Dora Elena (our host) what time the express bus leaves for Leon. She didn’t know but, the dear sweet lady called the bus terminal and asked for us. We met our teachers on Friday morning and walked through the organic market. It was 10:00 till we actually got to school, because we took a bus from the market and spent 30-45 minutes on it till it dropped us off at the school. We spent the morning in class and then got a taxi back to Dora’s for lunch and a quick nap before grabbing our suitcases and getting a taxi to the bus terminal. We got there in plenty of time, but also go good seats. We were seated on different seats because I was getting off in Malpaisillo  It left at 3:00 on Friday afternoon and I was excited to be going home for the weekend. I was so happy to see the white truck with the blue tarp sitting at the end of the road in Malpaisillo. Jason and Virginia came to pick me up.
However, the weekend was different from what I expected it to be. When we got home, I noticed that Laura had a candle burning, but didn’t really seriously think of it, until Virginia said that we have been out of electric since Thursday evening. I thought, “oh wow”! This could make for an interesting weekend cause I needed to do some washing. It all worked out though, Randy would start the generator every so often, so we were able to do 2 loads of wash on Saturday. We did not get electric back till Sunday morning, while we were at church.

We had back to Esteli tomorrow morning. I will meet the bus at Malpaisillo at 5:00 and
we have about a 2-hour ride from there to Esteli, so Lord willing we will be back in Esteli
tomorrow.

Blessings to all of you!

First Post of Nicaraguan Updates

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