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Nov 23, 2003
Santa Rosa de Copan, Honduras

This was a very busy week -- and good. I was chastised a little bit about bitterness in last week's update and it was correct. Sometimes I get frustrated like everybody else, but that does not mean I need to broadcast it... I apologize.

Monday was busy from 8:00am until 10:00pm. The daylight hours were spent working with the kids to finish all the rebar for the basketball court and cleaning up the back yard. Meanwhile, the ladies sewing program started up again with a good turnout and a good instructor. At 5:00pm we were ready for a presentation with UNICEF, the mayor, vice-mayor and a couple city committee's on culture and youth development. We had dance, music, theater and then a video. I put in about 10 hours on Sunday building a 10 minute movie on my computer. It had some errors, so I tried to "re-burn" it Sunday night. We found out Monday morning that the sound was turned off on the improved copy. I added a couple segments and reburned it again -- only this time the computer froze up without sufficient time to try again before the presentation. So... we had a Charlie Chaplin style silent movie that showed the various programs that we host at the center. Even then, the computer would show the movie, but the projector would show everything on my computer but the movie image itself. I gave a verbal presentation instead and when I was almost finished, a helper had finally got the image to show through the projector. So we sat and watched what I had just explained. Despite my extreme frustrations with the movie, God blessed us in that presentation with great favor both with UNICEF and the city. Once the presentation was over and all our distinguished guests left, I headed downtown for a meeting with potential new volunteers. We came up with a plan for a craft and education program for young single mothers, a folk dance class for boys and girls (the future instructor was simply at the UNICEF presentation earlier on), a re-start to our human relations / radio speaking class and a tutorial program for kids while they are on vacation over the winter.

I cannot remember what we did on Tuesday other than helping two young guys learn to solder jewelry and attending a board meeting for the local School of Arts & Trades. Apparently in the morning, one of the kids had to hold Buster (my black German Shepherd) while the city worker came for the garbage -- he's not such a big wuss after all! Wednesday, those same 2 youth went with me to San Pedro Sula. We bought chlorine for San Juan de Opoa; a new soldering torch, file and bits; stucco for our shop; basketball hoops and a drill press. We also quoted out other equipment for our shop so that UNICEF has something to help with next year. Thursday we assembled the drill press only to find that the motor casing was broken. We also hosted a medical clinic in our center that day. A doctor from Cuba came with some staff from the local health center plus lots of drugs. She spent all morning up until 2:00pm consulting with 97 kids (adults not allowed at this clinic). The kids were very happy, especially since they know we bring in medical teams that are never allowed to work here in Osorio due to legal restrictions. When they finished, the doctor insisted on a picture with our "vicious guard dog" because the big wimp kept laying on her feet during the day and watching the kids she was working on.

Friday was legal day -- we have to register APROCOLA with a new government agency and I had to find a reputable local lawyer and then prepare all of our papers. I also went to the internet cafe to send the pictures of the kids receiving their quilts from Brenda's quilting group in Cochrane.

Saturday we started stuccoing the shop. Unfortunately we went through a new type of stucco at a much faster pace than expected. In the late afternoon I hosted "Cooking for Guys to Impress Chicks". You have to use impressive titles to get 14 year old boys into a kitchen... Our stir-fry was edible, even tasty, and we all had fun. Sunday morning I worked on the new web pages for the Tela project and then at noon I started making peanut butter sandwiches for the soccer team. These were the kids who spent one day working hard on leveling the ground for the basketball court voluntarily. Anyways, after a lunch of peanut butter sandwiches, we loaded 12 kids into the back of the Rodeo and Andrew up front with me and we set off for Lepaera. There we split our group into 2 teams and played "little soccer" in a basketball court equiped with soccer goals. WE GOT CLOBBERED. The local kids were accustomed to playing on a small area like this and played with discipline. Our kids, well, they ran, tripped, stumbled and had lots of fun anyways. It was also good for our ego since we have clobbered several other local teams here in Santa Rosa de Copan.

On our drive home I told them the story of Queen Esther and the evil Haman. The kids went quite to listen, despite all the energy that was still stored inside. With our return to Osorio, you would never know we lost. They hooted and hollered and screamed like little girls. Surely it was the triumphant return of the victorias! To keep my sanity, I quickly bannished them to their homes as soon as they finished washing their soccer uniforms. I then retreated to quite work on the computer to finish the web pages for Tela. So as you see, we had a great week here... and still no snow.

Contact me at phil@timko.ca with any questions or for further information.

Prayer requests:

Praise: the presentation on Monday was extremely well received despite my frustrations and failures with the video.
Help: we still need gravel for the basketball concrete (the steets still closed, but I hear that this morning the mayor was in the area looking at alternatives for us)
Praise: we had a lot of fun again in Lepaera on Sunday
Better mechanical health for (or better yet, the sale of) my Isuzu Rodeo. I've decided that when I return after Christmas, I am simply going to trade it in to some lot in San Pedro Sula.
Christian volunteers to help us achieve our ultimate goal of helping to make Christ real to people we're helping