This is the part in which we went to visit the Clinic #2, La Belleza (The Beautiful). She is located 3 hours away from Clinic #1, Clinica Luz Y Esperansa (Clinic Light and Hope). The road between the two clinics is very, VERY bumpy and dusty. This is something of a ‘right of passage’ for visitors like us – we try and get as dusty and unkempt as we possibly can by sitting on the back of the truck and then take pictures together in our disheveled-ness, to prove to our friends that we were in Paraguay. You could call it bragging rights, or a prize, or a souvenir, whatever. It’s PARAGUAY, for goodness’ sake 🙂
My friend Althea visited Paraguay a year ago, and she did her own series about her visit. Check it out here, and you’ll see what I mean about it kinda being a visitor tradition to ride on the back to see how dirty one can become. Right, Althea? 🙂
While at Belleza, we enjoyed a delicious American spread on Thanksgiving Day, complete with scared turkey, and dressing, and some other food that was really good, but I just can’t remember right now 🙂 We also went visiting a few times, drank terere and befriended some baby quati, UNTIL they relaxed a little too much, and, uh, Rhonda and I got blessed 😉 But, you know, this is PARAGUAY – whatever, no big deal, etc 🙂 We also had meals with two of the church families. Awesome food, great stories, and the most delicious, sweet, juicy watermelons you could imagine. Yes, it was good.
Here are the photos:
This is a tiny glimpse of the dust our truck generated on the road. Sometimes we got stuck behind a semi, and had to breathe that dust for ten minutes or so, until we had a chance to pass him. You can imagine a semi generates probly five times as much dust as you see on that photo.
Our people were tuckered. out. Before this, I never imagined that people could sleep on the road to Belleza. From what I’d heard, it was very bumpy and twisty, and when it rained, the road disappeared under a layer of slippery Paraguayan mud. I guess I’d thought it was a very treacherous road. So when I noticed Dad nodding beside me, I kinda chuckled. Then I turned around and saw the back seat, and I had to stifle my laughter. The poor people!
The Road to La Belleza!
This is Rhonda Brenneman, registered nurse at the clinic, and I. On the way to the Thanksgiving meal, we spotted a hat lying in the garden. Whose idea it was to decorate it, we’ll leave for you to decide 😉 It was, in fact, our dear board chairman’s hat. And, of course, he and his wife had to pose with it:
After the meal, a few of us never really left our chairs. We just stayed and talked and played games while the others cleaned up. We did not feel guilty tho 🙂
This is Kati, being herself, except snazzified. No, she does not wear finger nail polish, but she has been known to rip up flowers if she thinks it will help her change her nail color 🙂 Okay, so she wasn’t the only one doing it. See the remnants of blossoms on the table? 🙂
The quati was very popular with photographers.
They’re kinda like a Paraguayan version of American raccoons. Except with longer noses.
Rhonda B and Kelly Raimer, happily being themselves on the Road to Belleza.
This is what they do in Belleza to cool off. Cheers to anyone who can spot the bubble bath!
I hope to someday find a photo of our group after we came back from Belleza riding on the back of the truck and add it to this post. For now, I shall kick it out of my “Drafts” folder and into “Published!”