Thursday, January 29, 2009

LIttle Pearl's BIG Miracle.

So much has happened this week. My blog site almost imploded this week - I will tell you about that in a moment. However, first...Mazatlan is really a great place, with great people that live...and visit here. Darlene, Larisa Magnus' mom has been here staying with Mike and Marcelle, and she is a really super person. She has been here for just one week, but the type of person that is game for anything, so lots of fun to have around. Also, Sam and Katy from Winfield, my parents' congregation have been here too, and they have been really nice to have around, and a couple days ago, Dave and Jeanette Small showed up to spend time visiting with Patricia and Alejandro. Today, Patricia organized a daytrip for the entire brood of us. Songtang open trucks showed up to pile us all in. Mike and Marcelle followed behind in the car due to the baby seat situation, but we all went down to the docks, hopped a boat for a coast tour and then were taken to Stone Island for lunch and kayaking, and banana boating, and horse-back riding. I think most everyone is wiped tonight, but it was really a good day.

I wrote before telling you how Pearl was desperately sick and we went to the vet. Well, as I mentioned we found a wonderful vet and he got her all fixed up. But that doesn't compare to what happened two days later. We walked into our pool area and there was an American couple there with a huge German Shepherd, and 100lbs. I saw how big the dog was so I decided to skirt the other side of the pool area so we could get to the gate on the other end so we could get to our condo. We started to creep our way around the pool and suddenly the big black shepherd bolted toward us and was heading toward Pearl. I tried to block him with my body but it was in vain because of his size. He grabbed Pearl in his jaws and started clamping down and swinging her. I was screaming bloody murder and struggling with the dog. Everything was happening so fast but somehow I got my hand into his mouth and he released. He punctured my finger, scraped my neck and clawed my arm but I didn't know until later because of the adrenaline rush. As soon as I had Pearl in my arms I started running toward our condo two blocks away, yelling for my dad to get in the truck so we could get to the vet. When I rounded the corner to our condo he was already at the truck door because he said he could hear me screaming all the way. Because of the blood loss I knew we wouldn't be able to make it across town to the vet I like, but when we were in service the previous day, I noticed a new vet opened in the new mall down the road from us, so dad got us there in record time. He couldn't speak a lick of English, and he looked like he wasn't even 30 years old, but he was a great vet. He immediately got his operating room and utensils ready and starting working on Pearl. It took him two hours almost in the operating room to sew up her internal injuries. Either due to the initial attack or the fear of what Pearl was going through I was shaking uncontrollably. I am so grateful that Gloria West hopped in the truck as we were taking off because she really helped during the whole ordeal. The first 36 hours were horrible for Pearl - it truly is a miracle she is alive, but today she woke up in a perky feisty mood, and she has started to walk around the room a bit - unstable, but at least she's trying. It will probably take another week or so before she is feeling good again. She is stitched to the gills but I imagine in another week those may come out too. For the first three days I felt like I fell down a flight of stairs, but now my finger, and arm and neck scrape have started to heal so I am starting to feel better too. I remind myself that this could have happened in Canada or America too, but I am thankful that the vet care is really good here, and economical. For the work he did on Pearl in America it would have no doubt cost at least $4000, but here it cost $90.

Well, tomorrow I think we have ministry work on the agenda, so that should be lots of fun. We are having really good results so it is such a joy to go out. Also, Mom caught another Corbina on the beach so now she is the talk of the town this woman keeps on catching big fish when they seem to be evading the professional guys. Funny thing is, some sisters in the congregation sent their husbands out to buy them fishing gear and tomorrow morning they are meeting her on the beach for fishing lessons. She is having so much fun with this...and we are eating some really good fish dinners these days too. :-)

Okay, love you all. .... d

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Met The Neighbors and our Visit To The Vet

A lot has been going on the last few days. I had another wonderful day in the ministry work. The temps now are in the 80s during the day and drop into the 70s at night - perfect. :-) I got to meet the neighbors over the fence. Four of them. They are spiny-back iguanas and live in the palm tree over the fence. They all came down the other morning to take a drink from a running hose in someone's yard. Absolutely HUGE. When they first came down the tree they were bright green, but when they came into the yard they changed colour to match...really is incredible how Jehovah designed these animals.

I shouldn't have been surprised but Pearl got herself into a bit of trouble and we made a rush visit to the vet. Dad and I were sitting in the livingroom talking and we could hear crying from my bedroom. Pearl was in A LOT of pain, so I scooped her up and Joe drove us to a vet. This was a REAL experience...and I was really worried. This office was just too down to earth for me. Nicest man and woman vet in the world, but I just didn't feel they were equiped to deal with a true emergency. At one point I asked for x-rays and he said okay and made a phone call and then this man showed up with an x-ray machine that I swear looked like it was last used in the 1940s - dust covered with big knobs and a needle that moved back and forth to show radiation levels. The worst part for me was when he asked me to lay Pearl on her side on the floor so that he could take a picture of her. Now you can guess that this request was just NOT going to happen. Pearl doesn't lay anywhere for two seconds, let alone on her side, on the floor perfectly still. I couldn't control her and was being prodded to hog tie hold her and finally just broke down in tears because it was such a disaster of an effort. Finally he leaned the lead panel up against a machine and I held Pearl's front legs up and we took a picture best we could of her body parts. Well he diagnosed that she had a blockage and sent me home with laxatives. But she was so sick that night and her symptoms just didn't seem like they fit that, so I went onto the internet and through my tears found a website for what was recommended as the "best veterinarian in Mazatlan". So after three hours of sleep and cuddling a crying Pearl through the night my sister Marcelle drove me to his clinic this morning. YOU WOULD NOT BELIEVE was beautiful and modern and he was just excellent - same as my vet in Korea, or one in Canada or America. English speaking. He and his assistants went over her with a fine tooth comb sticking probes in every orifice of her body and found out that she didn't have a blockage but rather an infection. He gave us the right medicine, and a shot of antibiotics in her peanut butt, and tonight she is on the way to health. But it really restored my faith that there are wonderful vets in Mexico also. :-)

One side note - Harvey at this moment has a split on his nose and a puncture in his cheek - slathered in Neosporin of course. During one of the procedures the vet asked me to take Pearl outside and let her "expel" the contents of her bowel after he gave her something, so we decided to walk along the sidewalk. A few houses down there was a huge courtyard with an iron gate with about 6 inch spaces between the rods. Inside were two MONSTOROUSLY large pitbull type dogs. Marcelle was leading Harvey and she didn't realize how close she was to the fence - just then one of the monster dogs lunged through the fence rods and grabbed Harvey by the face. I prit near had a heart attack and the little dude was bleeding, but back at the clinic Marcelle and I got him all cleaned up and slathered with ointment and now he too is mending. So it has been quite the day and I am ready to hit the hay early again. :-) So everyone, take good care, and I hope you are having a wonderful week. Love, d

Friday, January 16, 2009

I am woman, hear me roar...and watch me fish!

Mom caught the biggest fish on the beach today! ...and I believe it is going on the barbi tonight.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Fishing and the Ministry

The last couple days have been great. Mom brought her rod down has been fishing off the beach in front of our place. I'm not that ambitious yet, and am happy just to run or walk up and down the beach with the dogs. She has done excellent and caught two fish that we had for dinner last night. I think they are called Pampona. The neighbor fishes for tuna and showed us pictures of what they caught during the day and they were HUGE - all by standing on the beach.

Harvey and Pearl have been running tons on the beach and are exhausted at the end of each day. At this moment they are flopped like rags beside me. There is grass in the backyard so I am trying to get them to spend some time back there each day too, but for the most part unless I am sitting out there with them they give me the sad eye, and guilt me into bringing them inside.

The city here is really nice. Very clean and lots of colourful little buildings. The streets aren't as busy as I imagined they would be, so I am happy about that. There are many little golf cart taxis scooting people around town also.

I joined the group for ministry work this morning. Our territory was really productive. Dad had a couple nice Bible discussions with a couple men, and I met a young guy on the street and had a nice Bible discussion too. I suppose due to the culture there were many more people at home than I am used to, so it was nice to find someone home at many houses. After having such a good time this morning, I am looking forward to joining the group again tomorrow. The people you see in the pic with mom and dad are Rick and Gloria West. They are from Reno and a super couple. The know Mike and Sue Ellis from up that way too.

Oh, one pic I HAD to show you was the hand dryer in the bathroom at the store here. It feels and sounds like they installed a jet engine in it. It literally dries your hands completely in about 5 seconds flat. It blows so hard that if you put your face in front of it, it will blow your skin backwards. I have traveled to many places in the world and never seen this before, so if you wanna see it you're gonna have to come to Mexico. :-)

Okay, it is early but I am so tired I think I have to start thinking about bed, so I hope everyone has a wonderful few days.

Love, d

Sunday, January 11, 2009

We've Arrived!

The 18 hour drive to Mazatlan was well worth it. It is a beautiful place. The drive here was very pretty with good scenery on day two. We also stayed in a really nice hotel that accomodates dogs also. The rooms were pure luxury and after a long day of driving it was so nice to fall onto the bed. The rooms were really large and just really prettily done. It was the Hotel San Sebastian in Hermosilla - cost about $55 US for anyone else that is thinking about driving down also.

The beach here is incredible with very few people so I have been able to let Harvey and Pearl off the leash to run. Because Pearl has never been off a leash before, when I first took her off she still walked right tight behind me for the first 15 minutes and then she gradually figured out that she could run in circles and chase the birds also. I was still careful with her not to get into the tide though because she is so small I could envision her two big ears floating out toward Hawaii. ;-)
I went to the congregation here today also and it was just wonderful. There were 143 in attendance today. 99% brothers and sisters from Canada and America that are here doing the ministry work. The territory is huge, but the results are really encouraging to listen to. I plan on joining them for three days this week, so I am looking forward to that. One super interesting tidbit from the meeting. After, I went up to the literature counter and found that the counter attendant was a 10 yearold boy. He was running everything with no help. I asked Joe about it afterwards and he said that he was able to handle the responsibility so the brothers thought it would be good training for him and let him do it. I thought that was so cool.

Tomorrow we are fly fishing, so we'll see what comes of that also. Last time mom and I fished together in BC a few years back we did not bad - caught a couple salmon a piece as I remember so we can only hope for the same now. ;-) We don't have any bait though so we thought we'd take one of Pearl's weiners and cut it into the shape of a shrimp - gotta be creative ya know. ;-) ...we'll keep you posted on the results of our artwork.

Okay, I hope all is well with everyone. Lots, of love for everyone. - Darci

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Night #1, Day #1

We left Palm Springs at 4pm on Thursday night and drove until 9pm, getting to Phoenix. Stayed at the Motel 6 - very clean rooms again and open arms for the doggies. Otto (my parents dog) and Harvey and Pearl are traveling really good. It is long hours in the car so I am actually surprized. Pearl is fighting addiction again though. :-( Joe gave me a bag of dehydrated chicken jerky from Costco and after just one piece she couldn't control herself anymore. She woke me up three times last night trying to get me to give her more, and when I opened my eyes during the night because I heard rustling I saw she had her head stuck in the duffel where the bag is hidden. If she were a celebrity I'd have to pack her leash and doggy bag and send her off to that Promises clinic for a month (the place they all seem to run when they are fighting one addiction or another). :-)

We entered through Nogales. The scenery of Mexico has been beautiful so far. Very much like Nevada. Going through the border and immigration was a breeze. They didn't even stop us or look at paperwork. The border guards were just super nice about everything. The town of Hermosilla is very clean and I will post some pics of the hotel in my next post - beautiful beautiful beautiful. :-) Okay, have a wonderful day....time to drive again.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Great week here!

It has been such a good week here. I have included a couple pictures of my new neice and nephew - Zane and Alexandra. Tracey and Eric adopted both of them a few weeks ago and they are really happy little ones. Big smiles all the time. Tracey had all five kids at the meeting on Sunday and they did really good. Second row from the front and they played and listened. She said she was worried like no tomorrow that they were disturbing everyone, but you could tell from the response of the brothers and sisters afterward welcoming the new babies that that was the last thing on their minds. The congregation here is really really awesome. Mom and Dad arrived last night from Canada and on Saturday we are starting to drive to Mexcio. It will be the three of us and Harvey, Pearl and their dog Otto also, so it should be a lot of fun going down. Joe typed us out very detailed instructions for practically every mile of the way, so that will help a lot too.

Motel 6 life is going good too. We are walking everywhere and getting lots of exercise because it is so central, and by the time we get back from Mazatlan the RV should be ready, so the timing will be perfect.

Well, better run for the moment...I am off to buy a truck today hopefully. :-)

Friday, January 2, 2009

The Potato Truck

Well, we are here in Palm Springs. It is a lot warmer than Korea at the moment so I am really enjoying that. The flight went well, except that Pearl was extra neurotic. I gave her drugs before getting on the plane but I obviously didn't give them early enough. Same as another flight before, I was ready to take all her drugs myself and wake up on the other side. However, the high point to the flight was that I was seated beside a lovely Korean girl and her father that loved dogs and were totally understanding of Pearl sitting on my lap for 98% of the trip. I had my "big-o-tire" coat across my lap so no one could tell she was there. And I have to give the little coot credit, she layed like she was comatose for close to 10 hours. When we arrived here we booked into the Motel 6 downtown Palm Springs - super clean and they love dogs, so it has been great. We have had only one "hitch" to our trip so far. We were supposed to move my travel trailer into Silver Spur Park on Monday but when I arrived at the storage facility I couldn't believe my eyes...there was a huge hole in the left corner. It was one of those moments where I thought the sun was playing tricks on my eyes because I COULDN'T BELIEVE IT. After last year when it was broken into the storage people told me something would NEVER happen to it again and that they would watch it extra careful...ya whatever. With wide eyes and flailing arms I went into the office, to find out what had happened and why no one had called me. I will spare you the details of the hideously stupid story I was told, but the main jist of it was that they said it all happened during a wind storm. That must have been one big windstorm to blow a hole literally into the trailer, rip off the hydraulic hitch and cut the power cord to the RV. He could tell by my half-slitted-eyes staring at him that I wasn't buying it. I told him that I believe the windstorm consisted of a bottle of whisky and the bumper of a pickup truck. The tow truck driver and RV repair centre man also got a good laugh out his story too when they saw the damage. I must have looked like I fell off a potato truck for him to try that story. Needless to say after it gets out of the RV repair centre I will be using another storage facility. To be truthful it looks like they tried to strip the wiring. That is big business down here selling it. The high point to this situation is that my insurance is paying for us to stay in the motel now and everything is working out well. So even with some early bumps along the way, we are having a great time. :-) Here is a picture too of the vacuum we used to get the air out of the suitcases. It was awesome. As you can see I use my bike for a pickup truck in Korea, as many people do so it is not strange at all. And lastly is a picture of our assembly day the week before I left. These are some of the brothers and sisters from the Philippines. They have to leave their children to come and work and get some money to survive sometimes. It is a terrible and difficult choice to make, but it reminds me of how both my grandfathers came over from Europe in the early 20th century for the same reasons. Hard choices of life for one's family. last pic...Harvey helping unpack. :-)