Roll over, eat an amazing breakfast of Jamaican puff pastries, crazy good fruit, and beanie weenies (yes, I said beanie weenies for breakfast, that are so delicious I had seconds), rub on some sun screen and load up on the van. The next stop is the top of the mountain with a generator, saws, hammers, nails, lumber, and open hearts. Waiting for us is an excited lady, she is the one this week getting a new home. Somewhere that she doesn’t have to worry about falling down every time the wind blows or her stuff getting wet when it rains.
On the trail there, a moment that some of us have been waiting on for months, one of out team members, Leamsy, stopped to yell at the goats so they would fall over… these are not fainting goats! Once we arrived, our team led by foreman Gregory (a Jamaican) wasted no time. Within 2.5 hours we had the foundation squared, the walls framed and up and started to put the exterior up. It was very impressive to see the speed and joy at which we were working. All the while, Jamaican kids running all around us, helping us and playing with us. Our girls started to paint the walls and doors and they had plenty of help from the kids. Of course the paint didn’t just go on the walls, the girls left a pale shade of blue and white. The most amazing thing to me are the locals who remember the members of our team and run for hugs. Reunion after reunion of hugs and laughter, it is clear that there are relationships that have been built and are growing.
After lunch we went back to the work site, half of the team went to the bottom of the hill to run a VBS or Backyard Bible Club type event for the kids. However, I stayed at the top to work on the house. It wasn’t long before what seemed to be the whole village out to watch and some to help. I love the Rastafarian men that come to help. They are so laid back and willing to help and learn. Where as most of the people say “ya mon” to greet you, the Rastafarian greeting is “respect mon.” The culture is so cool.
We made a quick trip into Ocho Rios this afternoon for to grab some snacks for the week. Most of us grabbed some coke to drink. Its crazy shopping, the total on my bill for 3 cokes was $263.24 in Jamaican money. That is just a whopping $2.45 in US dollars. But to hear the lady behind the counter say, “that will be $2876 for a couple loaves of bread is a shocker.
Be praying that our team continues to develop the relationships with these people. 4 years ago, the village wanted nothing to do with a church. Now there is a church service every Sunday in the village that was build off of the relationships developed during these trips.