We had a most interesting weekend! Friday night, we took a couple to PriceSmart (Sam's Club) so they could check the place out. We decided to walk the 2 miles to the store even though it had started raining. We took our umbrellas and headed out. It soon began to rain as if someone had a thousand hoses all pointed at you. We took a break in a "Lowe's" type store, then continued on toward our destination. By the time we reached PriceSmart, we were hungry so we walked to the mall next door because it has a food court that includes Taco Bell. We finally made it to PriceSmart, did our shopping, bought pizzas for our kids, and returned home. Marv and Anita are really great people. We had fun discussing churchy stuff with them- they have a pentacostal background.
Saturday morning, Camden and I headed to a run-down baseball field (think Sandlot) because we were told people show up to practice. People did, in fact, show up to play baseball! We had a group of about 8 adults and 14 kids practice and play for about 2 hours. Then, some more adults came, so we had another hour of batting practice. It really was a lot of fun. One of the local "coaches" is trying to form a league for kids. Camden is pretty excited. Then, Saturday night we played dominoes with our neighbors, Charlie and Audrey Leckie. They have four kids, too, so we enjoy getting together to let the kids play. We also learned that Audrey was actually a Spanish major in college, a fact she has been reluctant to disclose up until now.
Sunday morning we went to one of our 4 United Brethren churches in Costa Rica. We had met Pastor Eric and his wife, Iris, the week before but had no idea what kind of church they pastored. We thought it would be typical of our other UB churches in Latin America. Well, it wasn't. The facility was beautiful and large (it probably could hold 200 people or more), they had a worship team that could actually sing really well, they had a projector/computer with powerpoint of the songs, and the music was not too loud! The service lasted almost 2 hours, but it was fun to be there. We sang songs we recognized like Open the Eyes of My Heart, Ancient of Days, and The Power of Your Love, plus other songs we didn't recognize but enjoyed anyways. We also took communion. They kept us for lunch and we had a meatball soup that was really good (this was a surprise because "soup" and "good" usually don't appear in the same sentence from our Latino experience!). We got home at around 2:30 and began preparing for an evening on the town with a relative of April's named Bill, someone we had not had the privilege of meeting or spending time with previously. No amount of preparation could have prepared us for the events of this first encounter! Let's just say that we had a nice dinner, met some interesting people, had stimulating and sometimes eye-opening conversation, and made it home safely 3 hours later. It was fun! Bill is definitely a person with much life-experience and many colorful stories. He's broken every finger and knuckle on both hands at least 5 times each from various encounters over the years. We are anxiously awaiting our next invitation to dinner.
Until next time...