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So we made it! And so did our cases which, given that we only had a 30 minute layover in Asuncion, was a small miracle. It’s been just over two weeks since we arrived – an intense two weeks spent finding our feet, kitting out our home, buying a vehicle, re-orientating ourselves to Santa Cruz, and catching-up with people. I’ve also managed to squeeze in some priority Novō business… We still have some more practical stuff to do (both to set-up life here in Bolivia and to close things down in the UK) but it feels like we’re turning a corner and by the end of this coming week the initial settling phase will be complete. We’ll see. First impressions? That it’s really strange returning to make home in a place which is definitely not ‘home’ but in which we’ve previously ‘made home’; that Santa Cruz is an intense, growing, gritty city with an extreme wealth/poverty gap (a gap we’re seeing with fresh eyes, not least because of our kids’ questions and observations); that getting out of the city is massively life-giving for us; that it’s a huge advantage coming back to a place we know, to people we know and love, to a language we ‘know’ but that that also means you skip the “wow, isn’t this exciting?!” honeymoon phase! What else? The weather has been rough – mainly wet and/or cold – but that hasn’t stopped the kids asking to go swimming. I got stopped/fined by the cops on Day 4 (poor JJ was sure I was going to get hauled off to prison!). The kids have already made some great friends and we’ve all had such a warm welcome from friends here who’ve stocked our fridge, had us over for meals, and looked after our kids while we’ve shopped. Phoebe has had a terrible stomach bug for a couple of days, but was super-brave about it! It seems the people who lived in the house before us fed the local strays so we’ve been plagued by ferrel cats (a mangy white one is sauntering past the window as I write…) I’m tempted to get into something more reflective on what has been an emotionally/physically/spiritually intense couple of weeks, but I think we’ll save for that for a future post! For now, here are some snapshots we’ve take whilst out and about over the last couple of days. If you’re reading this as an email you will only be able to see the photos if you read this post online (which you can do by clicking on the blue blog title above).


The view towards the city from the only high-spot near to Santa Cruz


On the banks of the River Pirai


Sunday lunch at ‘La Sierra’ where they serve incredible duck… Mickey adds that they also have monkeys and parrots – not to eat though!



Visiting Kairos, a professional class Bolivian church, this morning


Our new home


Scooting on our street


  A roadside fruit seller or ‘fast fruit’ as Mickey calls it!


Daniel takes a rest from our furniture shopping!


The road behind our neighbourhood


On the main road into the city



11 responses to “Landing”

  1. PETER LOLLEY Avatar

    Andy and Family, Thanks for your latest post, and the news and photographs. Great to see the pictures; they remind me a lot of Romania where I have been many times. Roadside traders with piles of fruit, poor roads like the one in the area behind your house, the general landscape. I even identify with the ferrel cats! Still praying for you and your work, and look forward to hearing more in due course. Every Blessing Peter & Denny Lolley

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Maureen Atkins Avatar
    Maureen Atkins

    Hi there Andy and Mickey. Thanks for sending the news and photos, it is so helpful to picture where you are living and to see some of the areas around your new home. Praise God that you feel like you are starting to settle and I pray that each day will enable you to gain a deeper sense of roots – not only into Bolivia and Santa Cruz, but into God! Remember Psalm 91? Pray it over yourselves and your children (“and no plague shall come nigh thee!”) God is faithful to perform His word. Amen!
    What is the postal service like from the UK to you? If it ‘works’ after a fashion please let me have your address.
    Much love, Maureen xxxxxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ed Wallan Avatar
    Ed Wallan

    Hi Andy, Mickey and kids. Thanks for the great posting. We read it with fresh eyes and deeper interest since we were able to meet you (and also stay in your home for a few days). May God speed things along for you as you deal with getting settled in. Did you buy a vehicle? What kind? Blessings on you. Ed & Diana

    Sent from my iPad



  4. Dave Penner Avatar
    Dave Penner

    Thanks for the update. You have been on my mind and in my prayers as you have been making this transition. We are praying that you will settle in well and that the Lord will open doors for ministry that will truly glorify Him!

    Dave Penner

    EFCCM Director

    Evangelical Free Church of Canada Mission (EFCCM)

    T: 604.513.2183 F: 604.513.2079 E: d avep@efccm.ca W: http://www.efccm.ca

    EFCCM Purpose: to serve in the birth and growth of healthy churches internationally

    EFCCM Operational Focus: to creatively help people and churches engage in Spirit-directed ministry fitted with their gifting in step with the EFCCM


  5. Alistair Cuthbert Avatar
    Alistair Cuthbert

    Great post Andy, glad to hear that you’re all settling in nicely and slowly getting used to being back in ‘home from home.’ I did laugh about the being stopped by the polis – was that on the motorbike? I never received any fine for my bike faux pas and so you’re one up on me!!
    Anyway, when dust settles it would be great to Skype / face time – the kids would love to see your wanes! Blessings Al


  6. Terry Pocock Avatar
    Terry Pocock

    Thanks Andy for the update. Your pictures capture the atmosphere of your new surroundings, not that I’ve been there (what do I know), but giving us a real feel for the place. Certainly not luxury, , but how God will bless you in this new adventure.
    One picture seem to show a wide concrete drain; is this just a storm drain or sewage drains ?
    It resembles sewage drains as i experienced in Nigeria.
    It sounds as though its all going well; stopped and fined by the police; so now you have a criminal record !!!!!!! and the CATS. It can only get better.
    Look forward to hearing the next instalment.
    Love to you both and the kids.


  7. Elaine Hood Avatar
    Elaine Hood

    Thanks for the update. Glad you all arrived safely and are beginning to settle. We shall share the news with the folks at Crowthorne Baptist Church via the news sheet this coming Sunday and of course we’ll be remembering you all in our prayers.
    Elaine and Philip


  8. Fee Trim Avatar
    Fee Trim

    Thanks Andy. Great to hear how things are going and to see your pictures! Bless you, Fee



    Thank you Andy. Sounds like you have made a good positive start. Helpful to see the photos of where you are. Best wishes Heather Curnow


  10. drjohnstone Avatar

    Great photos, nice house , hope you paid the fine! Looking forward to visiting you next year.


  11. felix@eccp-ywam.org.uk Avatar

    Thanks Andy. Blessings to you and the family as you embark on this new adventure.

    Love Felix and Nancy

    Earls Court Community Project St Jude’s church 24 Collingham Road London, SW5 0LX Tel: 020 7370 4424 Email: felix@eccp-ywam.org.uk Web: http://www.eccp-ywam.org.uk

    A ministry of Youth with a Mission England. Youth with a Mission Limited is registered in England and Wales. Registered Company No. 1049516, Registered Charity No. 264078. Highfield Oval, Harpenden, Hertfordshire, AL5 4BX



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