Tuesday, January 30, 2007


1 tequila, 2 tequila, 3 tequila...floor. That’s a famous saying this side of the world about tequila and its strength. Well That doesn’t work for me as those who have drank with me can testify…(right Joe) Don’t get me wrong tequila can be very good, but like with most any types of alcohol the quality varies.

The other day I was shopping for some alcohol to help expand my mini bar and in the tequila section I was looking at some brands I had never tried before when I came across these two bottles, one flavored orange and one flavored tamarindo (a local Mexican fruit.) Since it said on the bottle that it’s 100% Agave (the cactus plant from which tequila is made from) I figured it would be pretty good quality. I was shocked to see the price was only about $3 USD, I thought for sure it had been marked wrong.

So I got a bottle of each and when I got home I tried the orange flavored one and it wasn’t half bad. It didn’t have the smooth texture of the really expensive tequilas but I concluded I did well on the purchase.

I gave the tamarindo flavored one away to someone in the home. A few nights’ later he brings me the bottle and says, “Have you tasted this?” I told him that “I had tried the orange one and it was pretty good.” He pulled out a shot glass and said, “Have a shot!” So I did. OMG, it was foul and totally wretched. It was totally different than the orange one!

So for all my friends living here in Mexico I am here to tell you NOT to ever buy Don Marco brand tamarindo flavored tequila. (Orange is ok)

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Free Hugs - Video Clip

Free Hugs

Last Saturday we started the “Free Hugs” project here in Veracruz Mexico. We got the idea from the “Free Hugs” clips that we found on YouTube. So we made some signs and five of us set out to give free hugs to people passing by or riding by as was the case for the bicycle cops. We gave about 400 hugs in total the first hour and a half with lots of tracts out and people receiving the witness.

We chose the waterfront walkway as our testing grounds as there are lost of people walking there late afternoon and early evening. When passing by on of the Mexican Naval ships that was docked and giving tours the Officers onboard called us up for their hugs, so they got hugs and we got a free tour of the ship.

Click here for our Free Hugs Video Clip

Friday, January 26, 2007

Happy Birthday Rebecca

Happy 33, the age of Christ’s ascension to the heavens. Okay so that can seem bleak….hopefully you’ll be with us awhile longer.

Dear Rebecca, I know that people all over the world know you and have mostly met you in the past few years in your travels. I am sure anyone of them could testify to how sweet and kind a person you are. I say that based on what I have heard people say about you.

Although I have not met or seen you in the past few years and my memory of you is from some 14 years ago, I share the same opinions.

There are some people who cross your path in life and although that crossing may be brief it burns in the mind a memory so vivid 14 years ago could have been last month. You are one of those people in my life.

I want to dedicate this post to you and to the many unseen birthdays that occur for those working in areas behind the scenes. I want to thank you for the dreams and desires that you must have sacrificed over the years for the betterment of the Family and each one of us individually. It truly is a sample I would want to emulate.

I know that anyone who has forsaken anything the Lord has promised to repay a hundred fold, my prayer for you is that some of those blessings arrive this year.

Happy Birthday!

(Picture edited for security reasons....)

Monday, January 22, 2007


Yesterday marked the 6th month my blog was open.

In that time I have had over 6,000 unique visitors, averaging about 33 a day. I know that’s not many but for a little guy on the field I think that’s not bad.

I have had visitors from 74 different countries.

And I just found out my post, Thunderstorms and Life, will be published in an upcoming Reflections. TTL!

I would also like to announce the opening of “Don’t Ever Give Up!” a blog started by my good friend Jenny, the frog that is a princess.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Happy Birthday Ali

I want to do a special post for Ali (of Nathan) not only because it’s her birthday but because of the friendship we share.

For the 18 months that I was not in the Family I had lots of people praying for me and doing what they could for me. From November of 2005 – May of 2006 was probably the hardest time spiritually and emotional of my entire life. Ali, faithfully sent me an email every single day with a quote or a key promise to try to encourage and strengthen me. There was times when I wasn’t online for over a month yet when I did check my email I would have 30+ emails from her with the subject line, “Quote for today!”

Ali, you helped save my life!

Although I have thanked you dozens of times I feel I can never thank you enough for the faith you showed in me that I would make it, for the prayers you prayed that I would and your unwavering friendship despite my shortcomings. It’s because of people like you I am here today.

May this year be your best yet, filled with blessings and love!

If there’s anything you or Nate need, please let me know and I will do whatever I can to help.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Vacations: Transportation

So I just got back from my 6 day vacation. The first day I just stayed at home and rested. Day two I set out for Mexico City where my good friend Francesco is arriving from Hungary. I am hitchhiking to save on money. It took me about 3 hours and 15 km of walking in totally to catch the different rides to get there. My final ride was in a brand new Semi-truck, the driver dropped me right at the airport in time for me to meet Francesco’s flight.

My wheels to DF!

Francesco (Cesco)

It was great seeing him after about 5 years. After meeting up with him and his home they gave me a ride to another home in the city where I spent my first night.

The next few days were a lot of different forms of transport, taxis, metros, buses, pick-up trucks and so on.

Vacations: Friends

Spent two days hanging out with Francesco (Lithuanian) and Cel (Italian); two great friends that I knew from Europe. Since it was my Mexican “Euro Trip” I will also mention Munoz (the Spaniard) since he is from Spain and is always good for a laugh and a game of poker. I also saw 4 French women in 3 different homes. Met a crazy half Japanese girl (Paula) who is into “drinking and men!” And although she’s not European I had to mention her for the great laughs (and video footage) she provided.


Cesco and Cel

Paula (The one in black lace.)

I visited 5 different homes and saw about 70 family members, it was a great time of fellowship.

Vacations: Room and Board.

Each home I stayed at, both the Mex City home and the Pedregal home were very accommodating. Special thanks to Juliet for giving me the big double the first night I was there. And many thanks to the Pedregal home for allowing me to just hang out and spend my vacation days there. They gave me my own room with a king size bed and a private bathroom. You guys made my stay there very relaxing. I got lots of extra sleep and Word time.

Vacations: Outings

I spent a day with Cesco and Cel in Ajusco, which is a mountainous area just outside of Mexico City. I used to go there every weekend when I lived in DF. So it was nice for me to go up there and just spend the day. We had an amazing meal, which was Cesco’s first authentic Mexican meal. We had Azteca soup and a combination of meats specially prepared for a first timer, along with hand made blue corn tortillas. For as long as I have lived here and have been enjoying Mexican cuisine this truly was an amazing meal.

Soupa Azteca

The meat platter!

That dog wouldn't leave us alone!

After the food we hiked the mountain and just hung out. Here are some clips of us just having fun.

Cesco Running from Cel

Cel riding the bull.

Cesco riding the bull.

Gabe Riding the bull.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Vacation begins…

Thank you everyone for your invites to visit you.

I would love to go to Cancun, Prague, Morelia, Dallas, Manila, Sydney, Santiago and Budapest, but seeing as I only have six days and $47.00 USD I don’t see how I can manage them all.

I will be doing, shall I even say, a “Euro Trip” albeit in Mexico. By that I mean that I will be visiting some of my European friends and people I first met in Europe. I will be traveling in a popular European way, hitch hiking. And I hope to arrive back home with $30 USD left. It will be adventure vs. economics.

If I am able to update along the way I will if not I will do it when I get home at the end of this coming week.

Please pray for my safety and protection.

My bag packed and ready to go.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

24 hours in a day…

My last 24 hours went something like this,

Last night we had our candle light service since we all weren’t at home on the 31st. That meant that I got to bed late, no complaints though as it was a wonderful time of heart sharing and fellowship.

Got up at normal time (well I had to drag myself out of bed, I may have been a little late…shhh.) and had devotions and breakfast.

Then to begin my day in earnest, it was market day. Had a great time with all my friends and contacts there not having seen them in nearly 6 weeks.

Got home around 2:00 pm and went through the veggies, and loaded up a bunch of food to take to our CTP. After getting home from that I took the kids for the afternoon till dinner at 7:00 pm.

Right after dinner I went out witnessing with some others from our home and in a few hours we had gotten out 20 CD’s. TTL!

So now I am home and writing this…I will leave you with some pics from last night.

Oh yeah and it was laundry day, I was actually able to do it…don’t ask me how I am still trying to figure out when I had the time for it.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Saturday, January 06, 2007


Today was fish market where we get about 60 kilos of fish donated every two weeks from our contacts there. I got the pleasure (ahem) of cleaning the fish this time. I know Andrew was happy for the break.

Friday, January 05, 2007


Finally got home to Veracruz, it feels good to be home. It was a very long trip! Thanks for all your prayers!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Perros y Burros

Today I was at the Mex City home and went to dinner at Perros y Burros (Dogs and Donkeys) we had a great time. With nice size burritos and half yards of beer you can’t go wrong. Here are some pics from that night.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007


Nothing was open on the 1st so today I was at the mechanics once again getting my alternator worked on. GBY the home for letting me use one of the area contacts, the guy spent 7 hours working on it and modifying it with an external regulator and completely rebuilding the alternator. All he charged was for parts. So this was the 4th mechanic in three days to work on it and the one who actually fixed it.

Monday, January 01, 2007


Happy New Year EVERYONE!!

Last night was a fun New Years party in Mexico City; this is my 5th year in a row being there. Saw a lot of old friends and met a lot of new people and I missed those that didn’t come (Esp. Chris and Naty, I love you guys!). It was great to just relax and fellowship.

Today I went out with the guys from the Nuevo Dia home for tacos. Thanks Jairo and Nat for treating me. Here are a couple pics from that day.

Andrew V. gave me some pointers about taking photos and here are a few from just fooling around experimenting.