Monday 20 January 2020
Good news! I have arrived safely in Mexico.
Despite the bumpy flight that was a little scary at times, the immigration process was smooth and easy, and the best bit – all my luggage has arrived safe and sound. Thank you everyone for your prayers. I was concerned I might lose my bags but God has kept them safe.
I was met at the airport by some team members who took me to a Mexican restaurant. It was very colourful with lots of tacos, meat and chilli and a live band played while we ate, which was a very fun and happy welcome to this new adventure.
We then went to see one of the projects that they are involved in. It was a large site with a big dormitory building that houses 40 ladies and their children. These ladies are refugees from places like Honduras and El Salvador and so are very poor. They have had traumatic experiences along their journey to Mexico and need lots of help physically and mentally. This project is making a huge difference in helping them and the Mexican government are also planning to get involved and support it, which is brilliant.
I have also been to see a few of the local houses which are shaped like a cube with flat roofs. There are no gardens, just a small cemented area at the front and all the homes have lots of security bars and big gates. There is no greenery here, it’s all very dry, barren and sandy as the whole city is built on desert like land.
Yesterday (Sunday) I got to go to church. It was very traditional and all in Spanish so I didn’t understand very much but I did notice that most of the ladies all wore skirts and none of them put their handbags on the floor by their feet. The man leading worship faced the congregation and waved his arms and hands like he was conducting a big choir, which reminded me of Mr Bean! After the service many of them stayed to eat lunch together, which they do every Sunday, inviting street beggars to come in and eat with them.
In the afternoon I went to a large supermarket to buy food supplies. It was huge! I guess it’s just like walking into Asda. It’s not cheap, and the food here is not much different than in England.
This City is so close to the border that I can actually see the border fencing and military vehicles driving by on their patrols. Just the other side of the fence is America and many people go back and forth across the border, some every day. Children can even go to school in America, to an English speaking school, and then come back home across the border at night to sleep in Mexico. It sounds crazy but many do this.
I am living with a lady called Laura. She is single with 2 dogs, and is so happy that I am with her as it means she can practice her English. She is a teacher but only works mornings.
Today have a meeting about preventing human trafficking and how this work can move forward.
Oh, one last thing to mention – there is constant electricity, running water and wifi, which is quite the luxury compared to what I was used to in Tanzania.
Much love to you all,