Wednesday, October 27, 2010


We woke up early to be at the airport in true Lauck fashion
Two hours early....
Unfortunately the airport operated in Guatemala fashion; what's the rush?
We were searched at the security checkpoint with thoroughness.
I would venture to say that the woman who conducted mine pat down now knows me better than most people. They looked through our bag and really scrutinized my anitbacterial gel that hangs on a carabinner. What were they looking for you ask....
No not likely. There were so many automatic weapons and machetes that I lost count.
No I don't think that they were worried about that since most prescription medications that we have in the states can be purchased over the counter and at a very low cost.
Ancient artifacts?
Nope. It seems like every person there has something that they have found in the ground around their house.
YES! And in particular seeds. They are extremely protective of the lush and beautiful vegetation in their area and even though we were just flying to the capital in their own country it was against the law with severe penalties. It is a good thing that I HATE gardening and cannot grow anything but weeds at my house.
We arrived back at the capital at about 9 am and checked into the Barcelo again. The hotels there are very service orientated and there is no goofy rule about waiting for 1 pm to check in to our room.

A bed never looked so good and we all took advantage of a morning nap.
Waking refreshed and hungry, we decided to walk over to the local McDonalds just down the street.
I was actually looking forward to being in a place that seemed the same as home.
I knew that McDonalds would not let me down.
Life size Ronald McDonald outside the front door?.....check.
Menu board with all my favorite Mcitems?...check.
Employees busy working in brightly colored uniforms?....check
 Super-sized fries and burgers served in a tackily decorated environment?......check.
A special armed security detail with 8 men in suits guarding all the exits and scanning the room for trouble....
This is not MY McDonalds....
Seriously I would show you a picture of them surrounding the building but I was too scared that if I took one I would be shot.
I was sitting there patiently waiting for my food when appear 8 men in nice suits with ear pieces in their ears like you see in the movies about the President and the Secret Service. They scanned the room looking at everyone and every door like their life depended on it. The photographer in me was dying to take a picture of it. The scaredy cat mother in me stopped her.  I tried to figure out who the important VIP was at the counter, but no one really stuck out.
After about 10 minutes half of them left the building while the other half ordered some food and sat down at the table next to us.
While they were distracted with their Big Macs I took a sneaky photo.
See it looks like I am taking a picture of Todd eating a piece of cheesecake.
Oh and did I tell you they sold CHEESECAKE on china plates?
Well they did and for the record the sauce on my Big Mac was not the same as in the states.
So much for feeling at home.

We took a taxi to visit some of Jack's converts in the capital.
Even though the roads are built like someone dumped out a bowl of spaghetti there are some beautiful buildings and fountains and really unique pieces of art. There was always something interesting to see whizzing past my taxi window. Jack always sat up front talking to the taxi driver. One conversation was a discussion about the first vision. Even with my little mastery of the Spanish language I could tell what he was saying.
We visited with one of the people that I was most excited to see.
Ana Garcia.
Ana was a older woman who was so prepared by the spirit for Jack to contact.
She had been intimidated by the missionaries who had come to her door for the years before but as she told us when Elder Winn and his companion knocked on the door she knew that it was time to let them in.
She hugged me tightly and told me thank you for sending my son to Guatemala and that to her he was an angel sent from God. I listened as she spoke hoping that Jack could translate. The only problem is that she never paused to let him do it. She was talking so quickly and with such feeling that neither Jack nor I wanted to interrupt her. The first few minutes I tried to concentrate and figure it out with my limited skills. There was no way I could follow the conversation. I tried to just look in her eyes and let it wash over me.
And then it happened.
I don't know what she was saying but the spirit washed over me and I knew that she was testifying of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It was a strong heart pounding feeling in my chest. I started to cry. I did not even know what she was saying but it no longer mattered. I knew WHAT the holy ghost was conveying.  It was an amazing experience. I tried to convey to her through Jack the love that I felt for her and the bond that was formed. She nodded her head and we both knew.
It is her dream to visit the states someday during General Conference weekend so that she can attend the Salt Lake Temple and see the prophet speak. I am praying that she gets her wish.
While we were there visiting there was a knock on the door.
And who was there to visit her?
It was so good to know that the work that Jack started was being continued and cared for by the next set. The work goes on.
What a wonderful thing to be a part of it.

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