Today we will be spending our third Christmas here in Loja. Our first Christmas here was to visit Rebecca for three weeks and see the ministry that she and her family were doing. It was the week I walked into an empty MK classroom and felt God telling me that this was where I was supposed to be.
On the second Christmas we were living here and enjoying the newness of everything. We chased trash men down streets, recovering precious cans, started Spanish classes, cringed when I saw small children out near the streets and in cars hanging out windows, Kept a close eye on the ground as I walked, encase I encountered dogging bombs or a hole that would devour me. We were concerned whenever the water or electricity was out. I would panic if I thought we were going to be late for something or someone else was late, if I thought I had to cut the legs off the chickens when I purchased one or eat the feet when they were in my soup. It took several months to learn that the sirens that let children know school was in session, were not tornado warnings. I was afraid to take a taxi or bus on my own.
Today I feel like we are normal here. Sometimes I think life is the same old same old, just as I did when I was in the states. We have learned we can let the trash go for a day or two, that if we miss the trash truck we can walk it to the large container in the park, and that we can also put the bags out without the containers. I am now able to carry on a short conversation in Spanish. I take taxis and buses on my own. When the water and electricity are off it just means the dishes and showers get done another day, and I can live without internet. Well I can live without internet for a day or two. The school sirens are now how I tell time. First one 7:00 time to think about getting up, second one 7:15 get out of bed you sleepy head. Children in cars without safety seats no longer give me the willies.
I can now cut off chicky legs with the best of them. I can now be fashionably late and it not bother me much and I see the lateness of others as a blessing sometimes. Sometimes God sends us a hail storm or flood so that it won’t get boring.
I still keep an eye out for doggy bombs and holes, I don't eat the chicken feet in the soup and God still says this is where we are supposed to be.