Thursday, March 24, 2011

Medical Licence Application (by Anjanette)

Well for the last 2 years that I have been working at La Fuente clinic here in Cusco other doctors have signed my charts for me ( a bit like being a medical student) since I do not have my licence to practice medicine in Peru. We didn't understand the whole application procedure until we met other British and American doctors here in Peru so actually last year when Scott went back to the UK for his sister's wedding he spent some time in the Peruvian embassy getting some of my documents legalised and stamped and translated .

So here we are a year later applying to the university of Arequipa for my "titulo" we were told that I would have to work in a hospital in Peru before passing this first stage of the process, I am not keen on that option partly because we are so busy with our work here in Cusco but also because I have been working in the general practice setting in the community in the UK and in Peru for the last 10 years so my acute hospital medicine is quite rusty!

This week Scott went back to the University in Arequipa where a friend of ours arranged a helpful meeting between him and the head of the university and they are now agreeing that I have sufficient post graduate qualifications that proof of my working here in Peru (under supervision) these last 2 years in the clinic should prevent me needing to work in a Peruvian hospital. So today we sent 80 case notes by courier and further documents to Arequipa. All we can do now is wait and pray that I will be granted my license. ( At least this initial part of the process) We are not prepared to pay a bribe, nor is my spanish good enough to pass a medical exam ( a bit like medical finals!) so we have to trust that if it is God 's will for us to open a clinic in Huambutio to serve the community there that he will open the doors, thankyou for praying, please keep praying with us , we will keep you posted.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Harvesting the Maize in Yucay

Those of you who read our blog regularly and support our work will remember that back in August 2010 we distributed maize seed to the families who lost their crops in the floods in Yucay. Well what a joy to return to Yucay today and visit the community there, we saw the wonderful harvest and celebrated with our friends there and even enjoyed a taste of the choclo! They greeted us warmly and commented on how much weight we put on in England (sometimes we miss the British sensitivity!!)we had a wonderful reunion.

The farmers are rebuilding their lives and their homes too! Our prayer is that one day soon we will see the beginnings of a new church plant in Yucay , seeing lives transformed spiritually as well as physically. Please pray for James and Julia who are preparing to move to Peru soon, after a period of language training they hope to work with the community and to church plant in Yucay.We thank God for this wonderful harvest, we don't really know too much about farming and agriculture but it certainly warmed our hearts to see the maize in the fields in Yucay today !

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Maria's funeral

Scott preaching

The coffin in the back of the pick up truck

The Despedida (saying goodbye)

Scott and Mercedes reading scripture at the graveside

cementing the coffin into the wall

Yesterday Maria passed away. She was Mercedes' grandmother, Mercedes is one of our teenagers at church and like her grandmother she is originally from the community in Huambutio. Our ladies' bible study group had been praying for her since she had thyroid cancer and in her last days could hardly breathe. (There is no hospice or palliative care available in Cusco) The funeral was held the following day firstly in the family home. Then the coffin was placed in the wall in the cementary in Huambutio. Today (23 hrs after she died) Scott conducted the service in Huambutio.

What a difference to funerals we have attended in England:

-We started late.
-We kissed everyone present at the funeral to greet them whether we knew them or not.
-Dogs and people wandered in and out of the service in the house.
-We sat precariously in the house on very wobbly long benches.Scott decided it was best not to sit down!
-The coffin was transported in the back of a pick up truck.
-We felt the hot sun burn us as we stood and watched the coffin being cemented into the wall in the family plot.
-The graveyard was surrounded by impressive green mountains, there were beautiful wild flowers with humming birds flying around!

And yet there were many similarities , people grieved, people gave thanks for Maria's life, members of the community joined family members and friends in celebrating her life and God's words of comfort were preached and prayed ! So in some ways it wasn't so different after all.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Feliz Cumpleanos Jessica

Today for Jessica's 8th birthday we have been thinking about things beginning with P

Party, Pass the Parcel ( a game we have taught our Norwegian, Canadian, American, German and Peruvian friends), Parilla (spanish word for barbeque, always a must when the Williamsons have friends over to celebrate birthdays in Cusco, and the sun shone all day!) Pinata, we bought a cheap cardboard one from the market for £1.25 and stapled it together and filled it with sweets, and Pastor our theme for the church service , straight after the party was "El Senor es mi Pastor" (The Lord is my shepherd) And so you really get a flavour of what life is like in the Williamson household Poor old Pastor Scott ended the day with a Plunger in his hand as the loo was blocked !!

We had a great time celebrating Jessica Ruby's 8th birthday. We are very blessed to have lovely friends here in Cusco to celebrate with. We hope you enjoy these Photos of the celebrations...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Getting ourselves organised

We have been back in Peru for 11 days , in some ways it feels so natural to be back that it feels as if we never left, although the shortness of breath and the headaches we are experiencing remind us that we are reaclimatising to the altitude.

The new mid term family moved out of our house yesterday to a flat just round the corner even closer to our church than we live. It is a great location as they hope to host the Sunday school in their home during the service , this means that the childrens' work will be far more interesting than having a quiet story and colouring in the little cubby hole that they currently do during the sermon!

So today we have unpacked our travel bags and sorted out all of the bedrooms and tidied the house in preparation for Jessica's 8th birthday party tomorrow.Birthday parties are a big deal here! Peruvians normally hire a venue and a childrens' entertainer and invite the whole class, expecting most siblings to come too, quite how they organise party bags is a mystery to me since the invitations go out the day before the party and nobody ever replies, so we will be having a party in our home with a few friends from school and church, our friends have got used to the "odd " way us gringos celebrate childrens' birthday parties and we are even confident that they know us well enough to turn up at the invited time! We are so grateful that God has given Jessica some lovely friends and we are also great friends with their parents, some of whom also attend our church, our prayer is to make equally good friends this year with Sam's school friends.

Today Scott took Jess and Sam to El Molino market, the large market in Cusco where you can buy just about anything you need and we bought them new bikes. They are both so tall (head and shoulders above most of their Peruvian classmates)and have outgrown the bikes that they learnt to ride on.They are very excited about their new bikes, the challenge now will be finding a flat safe place for them to ride them! Today's other challenge will be putting the pinata together ready for the birthday celebration!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

New Friends

The Roper family (Neil Amanda Daniel and Sophia) are the new BMS missionaries who have come to work with us ,we are very grateful that all 4 kids are getting on so well, this is especially important since they are staying in our house at the moment. Jessica is enjoying babysitting and playing with 2 year old Sophia, whilst Samuel and Daniel (age 4) are also having great fun together making up games enjoying running around together. A few days ago we had a brainstorming session sharing our aspirations for the youth and childrens' ministry in our church, we are very excited about the opportunities we will have now that we have a "team" working together here. These next few weeks we will help them move house, to an apartment round the corner from the church and Anjanette (ably assisted by Jessica) will spend some time looking after the children in the afternoons while Neil and Amanda are at language school. So far we feel very blessed that we are all getting on so well together, please pray that we will work well as a team and be a strength and a support to each other. Please pray for the Roper family that they will soon be confident speaking spanish.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

We are back in Cusco

We made it back to Cusco!
All 4 of us and our 8 suitcases made it from London to Cusco in one piece the journey was long but fortunately there were no delays . We visited the beach in Miami, we had breakfast at Lima airport with our colleague Margaret and we were delighted to see some of our church family and a few of our missionary friends waiting at Cusco airport to collect us. The sky was blue the sun was shining but in true Cusco style there was a hailstorm in the afternoon.
We managed to squeeze in a quick meeting with Jess and Sam's new teachers, we put the car battery back in, started preparing for the new school year tomorrow and even made a start on the unpacking. We are taking medication called diamox to help us adjust to the high altitude here, unfortunately the side effects are that your fingers and feet tingle and burn alot , but hopefully we won't feel the effects of the high altitude so acutely (the headaches, tiredness and shortness of breath).
So we are here and although it feels a little odd to be here it is good to be back , the kids are delighted to be back in their own home again with their toys and their summer clothes which they put on straight away.We have all forgotten some of our spanish and are a little concerned about how they will get on at school , we hope and pray that they will have a great start to their new school year.

10 hr stop over in Miami

Our journey from London,England to Cusco,Peru was long! The airline informed us in advance of a change in our flight times and so we knew we had a 10 hr stop over in Miami.
So what do you do when you have a 10 hr stop over in Miami? Well the Williamsons decided to go to the beach!
We didn't exactly have the coolest beach wear (just our travel clothes) but it was fun to feel the sand in between our toes and to enjoy the hot sun and to gaze at the beautiful sea!