So it has been several weeks since I added a new post. There are days when I can’t believe that I have been living in this faraway land for over six months. The time seems to have flown by, and the days, weeks, and months seem to go by faster and faster.
The months of March and April have brought with it some unique experiences to visit beautiful destinations around the Philippines. Here are a few photos that catalog some of the interesting things I have encountered over the past month or so.
1. A few weeks ago, our office participated in a teambuilding day that involved games, competitions, and art projects. This is a photo of me showing off my self-portrait as a five year old. For those of you that knew me as a five year old, you probably notice that the hair bow in this collage is not quite as big as the ones Loria used to make me wear. The group that facilitated this teambuilding day is the same group that conducts art therapy with our IJM clients.
2. This photo was taken during a trip to Quiapo, a district located in the bustling giant that is Metro Manila. A few of the ladies that work in my office took me to this district in hopes of finding lots of cheap handicrafts to use for the Manila Field Office prayer room at the 2010 Global Prayer Gathering that took place in Washington DC on April 9-11.
3. Here is another shot of Quiapo. Please note the tricylce queue. The streets of Quiapo was congested with men, women, children, dogs, cats, jeepneys, tricylces, and me trying to take a picture of it all.
During Holy Week, I was able to spend a few days prancing around the rice terraces of the Philippines. The landscape of this part of the country offers some of the most breath-taking views I have ever seen. Our group hiked up and down these man-made wonders, and I have never been so sore in all my life. This trip was truly an opportunity of a lifetime.
At this point in the rice terrace hike we had to tiptoe across a flooded terrace to reach the next leg of our trip. Here Mike is mentally preparing himself to take the first step.
This is me moments after I took a wrong step and found myself up to my knee in rice terrace mud. Thankfully, our sweet tour guide did her best to help clean me up after my slip. I am pretty sure I was saying something to our group extremely prideful and southern like, "this ain't my first rodeo," only moments before I took the faithful step that led to this photo.
As we made our way up the rice terraces of Sagada, we bumped into this big guy, and the caribou was gracious enough to let me snap a photo.