Monday, August 22, 2011

Faces and Places

This is one area that is typical of a "nicer" neighborhood based on standards of living.
A termite nest that was about a foot and a half long
7 year old Alba, a niece of a El Salvadoran sister who cooked for Austin.  When we visited her home, she cried while saying goodbye. She even made us a small tortilla and cheese dish to show her hospitality.  Alba named her rabbit "Ascura" in honor of Austin.  She was a cutie.
This is Ricardo, a 22 year old member who Austin was teaching English to during his time there.  Ricardo did very well communicating with us, better than we communicated in Spanish.  He is hoping for the opportunity to travel to the US someday.  Before we left their home, his mother asked us to giver her recipes for Apple Pie and Strawberry Pie.

This is the Palla Family in Tocumen, Austin's area near the Tocumen Airport.  They normally cooked for the missionaries, but if you remember back then, Austin was asking for some Guamanian food recipes so he could cook for them.  Their favorite dish among the dishes Austin made, was Kelaguen.

A typical washing machine, one of the amenities that many of us in America take for granted.  The other amenity is food.  We were very humble to witness some of the living conditions of many members who had so little, but who gave so much to caring for the missionaries.  We were so honored to meet them.

And the eye opener.  We met a couple of missionaries in one of Austin's old areas while visiting members.  We gave them a ride home and they allowed us to tour Austin's old apartment.  Austin's face tells the whole story of some of the living conditions of even the missionaries.  It was a tough mission.
 The next two pictures are areas in Puerto Pilon along the north near Colon, that Austin considered the most dangerous places in the mission.  The Mission President also counseled us and him to stay out of this area.  It is a very poverty stricken area where Austin and his companion, and many other missionaries, were robbed for as little as 15 cents.  Missionaries were not allowed in some parts of the area without several members escorting them, or after certain hours.  We were a little nervous driving through the area enroute to Portobello.

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