We drove into Guatemala City on Friday afternoon thinking we had reservations at our mission house. Well, we didn't and it was full for the night. Instead we found ourselves out in the middle of 5:00 Friday afternoon Guatemala City traffic trying to find a hotel to sleep in. The first two places we checked were booked solid so our next stop was the Holiday Inn downtown. It was a little nicer than we had planned to stay but to be honest I was not concerned at the moment. After fighting traffic for three long rainy hours to get to the city and it being our fourth place to check on I was ready to stay anywhere. What started out as a stressful situation ended up being a very memorable time for our family. The boys LOVED the big hotel. We had a wonderful overnight stay!!!
Right across the street from the hotel was a Hard Rock Cafe. I didn't even know we had one in Guatemala. That shows you how much time we spend downtown. ha. We got checked in and walked over for supper.
me and David
my sweet (but often rowdy) boys
David's mom is a big Elvis fan so we took this picture for her.
Our supper- grilled chicken nachos. YUM YUM YUM!!!
I'm glad that I do not live in a big city but I love to visit. After supper we walked around a few blocks taking in all the sights and sounds. It was quite lively and we loved it.
The next morning we walked down the street to have breakfast at McDonald's. We then checked out and spent the morning running around buying supplies. We had lunch with Gary and Lily Stone at Pizza Hut and spent the rest of the afternoon visiting with them and watching football (MSU vs Alabama).
That evening we attended a retirement party for four more couples that are retiring next month. These couples are taking the VRI (voluntary early retirement incentive) that the IMB is offering. The party was held at a restaurant in Guatemala City.
Our Guatemala mission family gathered around the table having fellowship while we waited on our meal.
The next few photos are of the retiring couples-
Richard and Sharon Cook have 35 years of service with the IMB
Mark and Debby Fricke have 22 years of service with the IMB
Gary and Lily Stone have 30 years of service with the IMB
Gary has been our supervisor for most of our years on the field. He has been a wonderful mentor, listener, and friend. We will miss the Stones greatly!
Jerry and Gini Cadenhead have 22 years of service with the IMB
the older MK's
my boys with Mark
Each family was presented a plaque and gift. They were also each prayed over by the mission family.
By the end of December there will only be five IMB families left in Guatemala. That is hard to imagine considering there were around 25 families here when we arrived just 9 years ago. Times are definitely changing!
We left Guatemala City on Sunday morning heading home. We had planned to be home before lunch and David had a 2:00 service to attend in the village. Well, the normal three hour drive took six hours that day due to some rock slides all over the highway. We sat parked in the road for two solid hours waiting for the roads to be cleared so we could pass. Do you think that was fun with little ones in the car? NOT! ha
our view for two hours on the trip back home to Chiquimula
We made it home safely mid-afternoon. We began to unpack and refocus our attention to the team we had arriving the next day. We still had some things to get done before they arrived. My next post will be of our time together with them. Team weeks are a lot of work but they are some of the most encouraging weeks of our year!