First I apologize for neglecting the blog for the last 11 days or so. To catch everyone up to speed, I will give a Sparknotes version of our adventures since last post.
We left Wednesday the 5th on a bus bound for Puno. Puno is a town, located in the southeast corner of the country, that sits right on Lake Titicaca. Trivia fact for today's blog is that Lake Titicaca is the worlds highest navigable lake (according to my Lonely Planet guide book and a local tour guide). While in Puno, we were able to gather data on 15 of the future church plant locations for that region. On one of our days of work, while we were visiting a town on the border, we were able to venture across to Bolivia (just so we could say that we had been there). We also had the pleasure of playing futbol (soccer) with the pastor and some of the kids in his youth group. This is noteworthy because we were playing at an elevation of over 12,500 feet! On our last full day in Puno we took a boat out to the islands of Uros and Taquile. The Uros islands are artificial floating islands that are made of reeds. Indigenous peoples have been living on these islands for hundreds of years. Taquile is a natural island out in the lake. From the shore of Taquile you can look across the lake and see the snow capped mountains of Bolivia. We got on a bus headed back for Arequipa last Wednesday morning and arrived here in the late afternoon.
Since returning to Arequipa, we have downloaded all of our pictures (over 1,600 of them) and video to the Extreme Nazarene hard-drive. Just yesterday we finished labeling all of it and putting it into folders. The next step for all of our raw footage is that it will be handed over to Eleseo (I'm sure I just botched the spelling of his name) who is one of our Peruvian counterparts at the office. He will do all of the finishing touches and make the footage into videos that will be distributed to the sponsoring entities (churches, individuals, etc.) of the different church plant locations. Ryan and I had a chance to do some grunt work on Thursday afternoon. We were able to help grout tile in one of the local churches here in Arequipa. It felt good to do a lil bit of manual labor. We have one more day of work ahead of us, mostly just wrapping up loose ends and such at the office, before we fly out on Monday afternoon.
I think that should clue you all in to what we've been doing while we've been off the radar. As always, thank you all for your support and especially your prayers.
--- Chadwick & Ryan