Archive for Bill & Sue's Journal
 Monday morning, April 9, 2007


I just got back from opening the church for the guy that does fumigation. We’ve been having some problems with cockroaches and ants, which are common in the tropics.  On my way home I had to pick up some pineapples (three for two bucks) as the missionaries are having a barbecue at the Blazers’ house this afternoon.  It is pineapple season s,o along with meat, we are also grilling skewered pineapple with cinnamon – yummm, that’s so good! 


It’s sunny and warm outside today, but yesterday morning about an hour before our sunrise service in the botanical gardens we heard thunder and then the heavy rains came and lasted all day. A change to plan B! The service was moved to Community Baptist (our sister church with ABWE). In spite of the rain, we still had about seventy people out for the service celebrating the resurrection.  Afterwards there was plenty of food for breakfast as everyone stayed around visiting. Folks loved the cinnamon rolls that Sue and Andrea Blazer made!  We can’t complain since in six years that we’ve had the service in the gardens it has only rained twice, and a little rain is better than snow and freezing temperatures like up north in the states.


In the afternoon we had lunch at our colleague Sue Lodico’s house with some missionary friends who had worked at the mission hospital in the Amazon where we had been stationed years ago. It was fun visiting and exchanging stories.


We are still waiting to receive our passports.  In the end of March, when we went to São Paulo for the Baptist Seminary’s 50th anniversary “doings”, we also marked an interview time at the US Consulate to get new passports since ours had expired. Things have sure changed since we were there last. You now have to call ahead and make an appointment to even get into the Consulate. In the past you would sit down with the person handling your case, and could leave with your new passport in hand. Now everything is done through bullet-proof glass, the passport costs about twice what it cost the last time, and then you have to buy an express mail envelope there to have the passport mailed to you within ten working days. At least it is done, and I shouldn’t complain since, from what we hear in the states, it takes about ten to twelve weeks to get a passport and that’s if they don’t loose your paperwork in the process.


The trip to São Paulo was a pleasant break for us. Our hotel was beautiful with a rooftop pool, a great view of the city and located right across the street from two big malls and a huge home improvement store.  After checking into our room, we wandered over to a mall, figuring on getting some supper at Subway or Burger King (places we don’t have in Bauru). Sue got a sub and I a Whopper, and then we walked around a while.  Now, São Paulo is a city of twenty-two million people so you don’t figure on running into anyone you know, but, while we were window shopping, of all people, we ran into Sue’s doctor who had done several of her surgeries and pretty much saved her life, also walking in the mall. We visited a bit, and he was happy to see her doing so well. That reminded us that this was our first trip into São Paulo in three years that wasn’t to take Sue to the hospital!  Continuing our walk, we found out that the mall now has an Applebee’s restaurant, an Outback and two Starbucks!  We almost cancelled out on the seminary banquet so we could try one of the American restaurants. (To understand this, you have to live out of the country for a while far from places like those.) But we’d already paid for the seminary banquet so figured we’d better show up.


Normally, I avoid reunions (with the easy excuse that we live out of the country), and honestly I didn’t want to go to this one.  But I was so glad we went!  It was fun to visit and reminisce with students, professors and colleagues from days gone by. There just wasn’t enough time to “catch up” with everyone. It was encouraging hearing from some of my students and learning about the ministries in which they’re involved now.  A couple of them are now doing the administrative work I had been doing at the seminary – that was cool!  Even some friends from back in my Bangladesh days were there.  After midnight, things finally wound down, and we returned to the hotel!


One thing with São Paulo, at least for us, is that leaving the city is never difficult. Though we spent thirteen great years there, it wasn’t hard to leave the crowds and traffic behind. We were happy to head home.


My wife says it is time to leave for lunch so this journal is ending for now. Have a great week ahead! Tchau!


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