Wednesday, July 9, 2014


 The morning of day 3 after breakfast of oatmeal with raisins and papaya we hopped into one of these
in groups of three and headed out to the poorest of poor sections in Iquitos called Belin.  This was our main form of transportation while we were there.  Moto taxis.  They are everywhere.  Tons of them.

I have never ever seen poverty like this before.  The houses, the filth, and in the midst of it all

the children

with faces like these.

"Vamos juegos los ninos"  "Come play children"  We shouted that while walking through the streets and they followed us.  We spent the morning there playing, loving, hugging.  They asked me to teach a quick lesson on the spot.  No preparation.  I was a little apprehensive.  I am all about being prepared.  But mostly because I knew it mattered.  My chance to tell the children something so important.  So I opened my mouth and asked God to speak.  "God loves you." "He created you for a purpose."  "He decided to create you Andrea, and you Mariella and you are special."  Their eyes lit up.  "You are very special to God and he will never leave you.  Whenever you need him you can always ask and he will hear you."  We talked about being afraid and asking God for help.

And then we left them.  Smiling and waving and running back for an extra hug.  Todd and I stopped on the way out to pray for Christina who had been badly bitten by a dog the day before.

I held back tears the entire time we were in Belin.
 Only allowing them to surface a few times.  Never spilling over.

I did not bring my camera into Belin.  The picture above was taken by one of our team.  We were warned of those in Belin who would steal things like cameras and phones.  I did not want to risk my camera being stolen.   So I got no pictures there.  However the pictures will forever be in my heart.

  • The dark faces
  • Dark eyes
  • Shy smiles
  • The butterfly
  • Slums
  • Poverty
  • The dog who'd lost a leg very recently.  Open and raw
  • Mounds of trash
  • The people
  • Tin roof after tin roof
  • Sleeping people under houses
  • The sandals on their feet
  • Babies, more babies
  • Sweet faces peering out screenless glassless windows.
  • The boy who wanted me to get the gum from his hair.  I tried.  I could not.
  • The little boy with all that curly dark hair
  • The little girls who I so much wanted to hold- but they were too leery of a strange white woman

 I could have done that the entire time.  It was something I wont forget.  But there were other things to do.  Other places to go.  Sharing a little love each stop we made.

We had lunch when we returned to the mission.  Arroz y frijoles  --Rice and Beans  and a Cucumber tomato salad with lemon.
It was really good.  I think it was my favorite meal while we were there.  I kept thinking about those children though while I ate.  Knowing they would LOVE to have some.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Know these memories will stay with you.