Showing posts from January, 2021

Whale Hello There

Check "whale watching" off my DR bucket list.  It's something I've wanted to do ever since I learned that humpback whales swim 7000 km. from their feeding grounds off the coast of eastern Canada, northern New England, Greenland, and Norway to mate and calve in Samana Bay every year, so my direct report, friend, and adventure buddy Courtney and I hit the road for the long weekend (Monday was a Dominican holiday). Just to help you connect the dots a bit, that means most humpback whales are Dominican! Samana is located on a peninsula about 3.5 hrs. from where we live.  Rolling into town minutes before curfew, we got out to stretch our legs and take in the charming  malecón before being confined to our Airbnb for the rest of Sunday.  The pool was delightful until a large extended family arrived to grill out and cranked up the bachata .  Dinner plan A: Order in from UberEats or PedidosYa.  Learn that neither exists in Samana and... Dinner Plan B: Call individual restaurant

Meeting in the Middle

Ain't no road too long when we (my brother & sister-in-law and I) meet in the middle!  Kyle and his wife Chelsey are vacationing in Punta Cana this week. Lest we be in the same country and not see each other, we made plans to meet in the capital, roughly equidistant between their resort and my house, yesterday (pandemic day 311). I got on the road around 6:40 and had the pleasure of sitting in morning rush hour traffic en route to our meeting point, Los Tres Ojos, pulling in just minutes after their cab.  From there, we made the quick (although Google Maps told me it was 33 minutes!?) jaunt to the Faro a Colón. It was, of course, closed, but it's an imposing structure with tremendous meaning nonetheless.  Our third and final destination was the  Zona Colonial . We started at the Hospital San Nicolás de Bari - the first in the Americas, built between 1503 and 1508.  We might have sat next to a table of MLB recruits at lunch, during which I introduced them to jugos naturales

The Swing of Things

If I've been quiet as of late, it's because I'm "back in the swing of things." Have you ever thought about that phrase? Is it a baseball reference? Sometimes you whiff; sometimes you hear a satisfying crack and start your home run trot? Is it a playground equipment reference? Sometimes your feet are practically dragging on the ground; sometimes you feel like you're flying? In any case, here's a rundown of major projects that are somewhere on those spectra and have been keeping me busy thus far into the New Year.  1. Missions Unpacked! Week 1 - Latin America & the Caribbean (LAC) - of this 100% FREE, online introduction to LCMS International's global efforts starts TODAY. Registration will remain open through the conclusion of the event in mid-February, so it's never too late to sign up. You don't have to let me convince you, either; check out this gorgeous website the LCMS Communications team designed! 2. New short-term volunteer devotion

Thirteen’s Not a Crowd

When you're at the Krey beach house, that is.  The Kreys, being some of the most hospitable people I know, extended an open invitation to a number of us single missionaries to join them for any portion of their annual post-Christmas/New Year's beach getaway. After a few quiet days of keeping, at most, three households worth of Cerro Alto's pets fed and watered, I retreated to Costambar on a Saturday morning. The latest round of restrictions meant I needed to arrive before a noon curfew. Although there were 13 of us - seven Kreys, me, Kate, Tirzah, and the Maita family from Puerto Rico - there was plenty of room to spread out.  From then until Monday afternoon, you could find me  ...doing puzzles (even though I'd already done this particular one back in April !)... ...putting up a Christmas tree (It was the 9th day of Christmas, after all. I love that this country milks all it can out of the 12 days of Christmas. At the grocery store on Tuesday, day 12, the villancicos w