Received an email from the wife of one of the leaders on Tori's service trip to Ecuador. Their first day was a thrilling success of fun--a great prelude to some serious work for the next couple of weeks. As the crow flies, they are approximately 3,000 miles away. I couldn't help but think of how the distance and the difference in surroundings, may be impacting this girl who by nature, would choose to sit quietly in her loft reading or writing stories about people and places and experiences much like the reality she is quickly coming to know.
They spent their first hours flying through the air via 13 different zip lines plunging them down canyon jungles forwards, backwards, and "butterfly style." They had the option of either jumping off 50 foot cliffs into a deep river, or descending down a 50 foot vertical ladder, to then find and enjoy a sky ride with a view spanning the incredible terrain on which they had just been playing. Foreign surroundings, people, language, and adventure... all makings, I'm sure for an incredible journal entry :)
The next day was their first day in the orphanage. No word yet, on what they found there. As much as I dislike the inability to communicate with my girl, I am so glad for the chance she has to be out there doing this. If not an "out of body experience," it is certainly an "out of personality experience" destined to stretch her beyond her comfort zone and into an area that will shape and direct her life.
I wonder how church was for them yesterday--what the building was like, how the local people may have welcomed the group, whether or not they understood the messages being taught, and if the spirit was able to break through that language barrier. I wonder how the children will receive them at the orphanage today, and how family night in various homes of local people will be. I wonder how their visit to the temple will feel to the girls collectively as well as individually.
I read about the history of the temple, and have no doubt that something special awaits them - likely, the blessing for their weeks of service to those children. They say: