July 12th – I find it so incredibly hard to believe that I am heading upstairs soon to begin packing our suitcases for our return trip home.
Six weeks in Mexico sounded like such a long time when we were standing on the curb at the Louisville International Airport with our bags, passports, and what sounded like a pretty good plan. (It wasn’t too bad – but we did need to change our plans a bit once we got here.)
I can still feel the blessing of those early morning curbside – goodbye hugs. It was like a private passing of the peace. Folks from Saint Stephen can “do church” anywhere, anytime a few of us are gathered together just like it says in Matthew 18:20. We don’t need anything more than God’s presence and each other!
Jesus said – “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them (Matthew 18:20).”
The McFarlands have had such a marvelous adventure together in Mexico (most days – anyway).
We explored Maya ruins and climbed to the top of Maya pyramids. (Some of us more frequently and with much more daring than others! See photographic evidence below.)
We saw snakes. (I was the only family member to have the honor of being present for all 3 snake sightings! You will never convince me that God doesn’t have a sense of humor.)
We made new friends. (Such an incredible blessing.)
We explored tide pools and met sea creatures. (I hadn’t been to the ocean since Jason and I went to Greece on our honeymoon 21 years ago, and William had never seen the ocean before our trip to Akumal.)
We went on very long walks in the jungle. (All of that lush, green, gorgeousness made my soul sing. William could have skipped right over that part of the trip.)
We counted lizards, hummingbirds, and iguanas.
Three of us ate a lot of delicious meals (and one of us ate a lot of scrambled eggs and “round” Ritz crackers) in stunningly beautiful surroundings. I loved being able to eat so many of our meals outside in garden-like settings. I did most of my writing and blogging outside in stunningly beautiful surroundings too.
I watched in awe as Jason got more than one meal receipt for $500. Jason didn’t even weep, and our family didn’t have to wash any dishes to pay for our meals. (Jack pointed out that once you do the math it is less that $30 USD – but math has never been my strong suit – just ask Buddy, Pat, Rod or Jason. I prefer a bit of melodrama for fun – see above! I ordered a $120 entree more than once, and Jason didn’t encourage me to join William on the crackers crew.)
We celebrated with the people of Mexico when their team won their World Cup Futbol matches and mourned with them when they lost to Brazil. Then we celebrated with Mexico again when Brazil lost to Belgium in the quarter finals.
I watched my beloved husband lie his way through Mexico. (Shocking behavior from a clergy spouse and father of two – I know!) Time and time again – people would ask Jason if he spoke Spanish to which he would always reply – “pocito” which I am pretty sure means a little bit. And then he would proceed to have entire conversations with them in Spanish about World Cup Futbol, the weather, the closest Maya ruins, and perhaps the meaning of life. I have suggested that perhaps he start telling people that he speaks “a medium bit” of Spanish, but Jason thinks that would sound silly. I think it would be the truth at least!
In Mexico Jason is the family extrovert and I am the family introvert. (Weird – right!!??!!). I have plans to talk to everyone I meet in Louisville over the weekend so you might want to avoid the Fern Creek Kroger on Saturday morning. I have a lot of pent up talking and words I need to get out.
The McFarlands have new family jokes that I hope we will never forget or stop laughing about.
We have also (maybe – just – maybe) driven each other just a bit batty.
We have spent lots and lots and lots and lots of time together. Perhaps too much time together?
The last time I spent this much time with either one of our sons they were newborn babies! I went back to work when both of them were 8 weeks old.
It was incredibly gracious, loving, and kind of Jack and William to give up their lives, their home, their stuff, their personal space, their friends, and to go on this crazy adventure with me (and their equally weird dad).
I know that tree hugging, hummingbird watching, God’s presence seeking, hippy dippy green living may not be what floats your boat – but Thanks guys – you ROCK and so did our time in Mexico!
And now to tackle those suitcases.