Friday, May 20th
Between the times of 6:00 and 6:30 a.m., the 13 of us met up in Fort McMurray, and drove down to the airport. We soon got onto the plane, and that’s when reality set in, we’re going to Mexico! Many thoughts passed our minds, what these people would be like, how they would react to us building a house in four days for total strangers. Some of the team thought that the locals may be unfriendly and aggressive, others thought that they would be scared or fear us, some thought that they’d be kind and friendly, and many just didn’t know what to expect. We played lots of games while traveling and arrived at LA safe and sound, where we took a bus to San Diego. Upon arriving we ate like kings at a large buffet. We went to bed after eating, hardly able to sleep knowing that we’re going to Mexico tomorrow.
Saturday, May 21st
We awoke and ate breakfast, then it was a speedy departure…off to Mexico. It was about a five hour bus ride. Along the way we stopped and I ate one of the most fantastic tacos I’ve ever eaten. When we arrived at the Hero Holiday house we went to our rooms and got settled. Next we finally got to meet with the family we were building for. You should have seen the house they lived in and their standard of living, it all seemed so bad compared to what we have, yet they were still really happy and joyful. The locals were kind, proving many of our thoughts wrong. The bus driver and our trip leader, Andrew, gave us a surprise on the way home…we were going to meet the School of Leadership students who were living in Mexico and then going to a masked wrestling match! The wrestling match was awesome! The loochadores were wild and crazy, it was something we’d never forget.
Sunday, May 22nd
Today was the day we starting to build on the house, we discussed the rules and safety measures and then we were off. Throughout this 6 hour work time we built all the walls and roof panels. It was shocking, yet encouraging how much we accomplished as a team. It seemed as we worked, the family grew closer and friendlier towards us. After we finished working we went back to the house and ate some the largest pizzas I’ve ever seen. Then we were off to church, they spoke in Spanish, but there were headsets to translate what was being said in English for us gringos. The preacher was up lifting, and the music gave a different feeling being in an alternative language. When we got home we had a campfire and sang more songs.
Monday, May 23rd
We were off work to again! Today we got the 4 walls and roof up (lots of hard work!). Some of us climbed up and built the roof, others helped set up the walls, cut out a square for the windows, and painted the outside of the house. At the end of the work day we were off to eat some authentic Mexican tacos. Many of us went right to bed when we got back to the house…this kind of work tires you out!