The keyboard player that night, for instance, was a young man who will soon be graduating from university with a degree in music.
And then there was the district center where the farewell was held. When we first came to Santa Cruz there was not even a thought about a district headquarters. Eventually the idea cropped up but it was only an idea. Then the district was able to purchase a lot with a tree in the center of the lot using a donation from the States to finance the purchase. The lot and tree sat there for a long time, (maybe several years, in fact) overgrown and unkept. But now there is a nice facility that serves as home to district functions, Saint Paul Seminary and the New Hope Tutoring Center.
Following the music we were presented with a number of gifts and "recuerdos"in order to take a little bit of Bolivia with us.
After the formal farewells and abrazos (Bolivian handshake and hug)
was a really delicious plate of sajj'ta de pollo (spicy chicken with chuño)
and a pretty cake.
Two days later we were honored by another farewell, this time by our friends from the missionary community.
Bryan and Molly Canny planned and hosted the event, complete with a large spread of food. It too was a nice afternoon of sharing one more time with the people who we have worked and played with over the years.
The most difficult farewell came at the airport when we said goodbye to our coworkers. We have been blest with really great partners in mission through the years and leaving them behind is the hardest part of our going to a different field of service.
So here we are, now living in "the in-between." We are very thankful to God for all his faithfulness to us during our years in Bolivia and look forward to what he will be doing both now and later as we arrive to begin our new assignment in Liberia.