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New Orleans Mission Trip 2009 - Thursday, July 16

I have to say this week has been quite an experience. New Orleans is
definitely a huge change from the environment I am used to. We actually
have been really lucky with weather this week because it cools down a
lot after lunch time. We have been waiting for thunderstorms all week,
and it finally started to rain today. It was suprisingly cold rain and it seemed
like a little bit of the bay area followed us here. Today our work day finished
at 1 which was a nice break because I could tell everyone was getting a little
exausted. Everyone is starting to get to know George, the owner of the
house, and his subtle gestures like smiling and giving his signature
"thumbs up." He showed us out to lunch today which was really cool,
but I think our group is a little to loud and energetic for him... But overall
today went well. It may not have been exactly as planned starting with the
short work day that ended another hour early because of rain and getting a
little lost driving. But in the end everything worked out.

The group is definitely bonding and getting closer to one another which
is always good. Everyone is getting interesting tanlines whether it's a
short tan, watch tan or a t-shirt tan. Oh yeah, and how could I forget
the wonderful bug bites. I am averaging about 3 bites a day... Which
leaves me with about 10 at the moment. Aaron has just as many and
Liane was lucky enough to catch up as well while working this morning.
We are all enjoying the hot hot heat, and bugs and insects. The food
has been exceptional, but we can all agree that Adam enjoys it the
most. We are all doing well and with half the trip over, we will all be
back in 3 days! See you then!

Mei Mei Or


Hola from NOLA
Greetings from the land of warm rain and thunderstorms,

Day 5 of our trip started off a little different than the preceeding days: it was
5:34 AM when imany of us woke up. Our normal schedule is to get up at
5:15 AM (unless you have KP, then it's 5:00 AM sharp), dress for the day,
prepare our lunch, eat breakfast, clean up the kitchen and then be ready
for a quick prayer and in our cars for our 50 minute commute by 6:45 AM.
I guess the heat and the work of yesterday is catching up with us.

Last night some of the youths informed us that the 'drivers' have new
nicknames. I think that because we are working so closely together
the youths want to call us by our first names but can't out of habit and
respect (they use to call me Mr. Leong, which was really my Dad's name).
So, the 'real adults' (not Stasia Leong, Karina Woo, nor Chris Cheuk)
got nicknames: Scott Barlow was renamed Scott Sizzle (which he later
changed to the Scizz-imagine Scott holding out two fingers and moving
them like a pair of scissors) to the laughter of the group. Leonard Tom
was named Little L, and I was named T-Money. (Please ask the youths
how they came up with the nicknames: Kelley Yee, Adam Louie, Aaron
Huie, Liane Chan, Casey Chow, Eric Li, Neal Fong, Damond Ng,
Mei Mei Or, or Justin Chu.)

We got rained out. It was warm when we started work this morning (7:30).
Our group (Kelley, Stasia, Adam, Aaron, Karina, Chris, and me) continued
with the siding on the sunny side of the house. We had only a 12 foot by
18 foot section leftn so we wanted to finish it. About 4 hours later and only
about 6 rows left to do, it started to rain. Dan, our site leader, pulled the
power on the electrical tools and had us put them out of the rain. We took
our short lunch/snack break waiting for the rain to stop. (Today was to be
a shortened day because Dan had to leave for a meeting at 1:00. We only
brought snacks because we planned on having po-boys for lunch with George,
the owner of the house, at a place he would show us). At about 11:30 the rain
stopped. Dan gave us the go ahead to finish the siding. About half way through,
lightning and thunder came too close. Dan ordered us off the ladders and to
put everything away. Three courses of siding left. We still have two days left.

Po-boys are not poor boys, even though that's what it sounds like. It hasn't
become that desparate here in New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA). Po-boys
are sandwiches that come up to two foot long (but mostly 6 inches and
12 inches). They put lots of deep fried seafood in them (shrimp, oysters,
soft shelled crab, crawfish and catfish) or the standard fair (roast beef,
chicken, veal, hot sausage). They are served with lettuce, tomatoes, pickles,
mayo, mustard, etc). Yummy.

Tonight Scizz and crew will be making dinner. We'll have leftovers
(spaghetti) and pork chops). I can't wait. During the hot days, my
appetite slowed down somewhat. Today is much cooler due to the rain.
I'm salivating just thinking of dinner.

Hugs to you all and thanks for the prayers.



[Friday, July 17]