From yesterday’s post…
5. Thankful that, despite having to make ANOTHER trip to the Honduran mainland TOMORROW to try and resolve our residency issue before our current visas expire on Saturday, God is ALWAYS in control and simply wants us to LET HIM run the show.
(Note: ALL of the following happens in the pouring down rain. We spend much of the day drenched.)
- After lots of rain for many days now, Karin fell down the slippery stairs at our house, while headed to the car to catch the ferry to go to the mainland.
- After changing clothes and getting ice for her injuries, we headed to the ferry anyway (about a 45 minute drive, if driven “like a local”…which I did). We thought we had missed it, but later learned it did not run this morning, due to the weather.
- We immediately headed to the airport, hoping to catch a flight instead. Upon arrival, we learned the airport in La Ceiba (our destination) was closed. (Keep in mind, our visas expire tomorrow. The ferry or plane are the only two means of getting to the mainland.)
- We then head to the local immigration office, to try and see what our options may be. We learn they won’t be open for another hour and a half to two hours.
- Karin is in such pain, we end up taking her to the clinic to be seen. (Clinica Esperanza, of course.)
- While she is at the clinic, I go to pick up our dear friend, Blake, who has agreed to go with me to the local immigration office. On the way to the car, Blake invites his friend Roger to go along. Although Blake does very well with his Spanish, Roger is bilingual. (Oh, how I thank God for friends of friends.)
- Blake, Roger and I go to the local immigration office (essentially a small shack), only to find a padlock on the door and a small hand-written note posted. Roger explains that it says, “…he will be back later.” Luckily, it includes a phone number. I call the number and Roger does all the talking. We learn the immigration agent is at the airport. Roger explains our dilemma and that our visas expire tomorrow. The agent instructs us to come to the airport.
- Upon arriving at the airport, we search and find the agent. I spend time showing lots of documentation and praising the Lord that I have all passports and copies of what all the agent requires. The immigration agent then explains, to Roger, of course, that we must go BACK to the immigration office, as that is where all the necessary blank forms are that he needs. He further asks if we have a car, as he needs a ride back to his office. (Yes, it is a one man office.) We gladly oblige.
- So, the agent rides back to the immigration office with us. We find that the “shack” is actually a two room establishment. We walk past his motorcycle, sitting in the first room, to arrive at his “office” in the second room. Unfortunately, neither room is water tight. The agent’s desk, chair, filing cabinets and all are standing in several inches of water.
- After presenting our papers again, the agent fills out forms for each expiring visa (3 of our 4…Hannah came down later, so hers isn’t expiring for a few more weeks). These forms are filled out in quintuplicate (5 copies).
- We then have to walk across and down the street (in the continued pouring rain) to the bank, where we pay the equivalent of less than $21 per person (less than $63 total). The bank keeps 2 copies and sends us out with 3.
- We walk BACK to the immigration office, and the agent continues with more paperwork.
- He then hands me back our 3 passports, with updated papers, and explains that we now have a 30 day extension.
PRAISE THE LORD! Due to our certification for our residency, and other time deadlines, we don’t actually have 30 days, but that at least means we don’t have to leave the country TOMORROW. We have about a week or so to truly get it done.
Now then, did I say something yesterday about God running the show? That, my friends, was the ultimate understatement. He is ABSOLUTELY in control! AND, He loves and cares for us greatly! I simply cannot sing His praises enough! To HIM be ALL the glory!
(Karin is now at home, icing and taking pain meds. We have to wait a few days to see if x-rays will be necessary or not.)