Posted by: bartandannie | August 16, 2008

It’s been a while…

Hi everyone. Sorry for the delay. Two weeks ago, we lost internet service and we don’t know when it will be back. So, this afternoon we tried out the local internet cafe. Fortunately, it only costs $.80 an hour–what a deal! We’ll try to keep updating once a week now that we know of a good place to go–look for new photos and video(!) soon.


As you know, over the past few weeks we’ve been able to meet many sponsored children and aging in and around Ocotepeque. On Wednesday, however, we had the pleasure of meeting Hunter, a CFCA sponsor. Hunter was in Honduras as part of a medical mission team working in Tela, a coastal resort town. Prior to his arrival, he had contacted CFCA Kansas to arrange a meeting with his sponsored child, Rony, who is 11 years old. We finalized the details here at the project and began preparations for the trip. 

Since only five people are able to ride in the cabin of the truck and eight people were going on the trip (Luis, Miriam, us, Rony, his mother, and another sponsored child and her mother), we decided to construct a shelter to protect those riding in the bed of the truck from the rain and wind. The end result was a Toyota “covered wagon.”

Our "Toyota Covered Wagon" the night before the journey to Tela.

Our Toyota "covered wagon" the night before the journey to Tela.

Our alarm clock went off at 3 a.m. Wednesday, and after a quick shower and some Dramamine to fight carsickness, we began the seven-hour trip to the coast. For breakfast, we stopped at a roadside restaurant with an all-you-can-eat-buffet for only $2 per person! As we approached Tela, the mountains gave way to sprawling banana and African palm plantations. The temperature seemed to skyrocket as the elevation dropped.

Throughout the journey, Rony was very excited to meet his sponsor for the first time. Hunter and his family began sponsoring Rony when he was 9 years old. Through sponsorship, Rony was finally able to attend school. (He is currently in 2nd grade). Also, Hunter and his family have funded improvements to Rony’s home, buying them 16 bags of cement and enough corrugated tin to build a small addition to the current adobe structure.

As we pulled into the hotel, Rony spotted Hunter, and before Luis had even parked, Rony had jumped out of the car and into Hunter’s arms. We quickly followed to help sort out the flurry of greetings in Spanish and English.

Rosa (Rony's mother), Hunter, and Rony meet for the first time.

Rosa, Hunter, and Rony meet for the first time.

 The excitement and emotion of that initial meeting never waned throughout the afternoon. Hunter was eager to learn more about Rony, his family, and his community. Rony happily provided answers to the questions, obviously thrilled to finally be chatting with his sponsor face to face. To us, it was clear that Rony and Hunter shared a special bond, a relationship forged through the exchange of letters, photos, and drawings over the years. In treating Rony to a banana split, challenging him to a game of soccer on the beach, and offering him advice on how to respect others, Hunter treated Rony as if he were another of his own children. He made sure Rony received medicine for his cough and that he did not go home empty handed. For all that Rony’s life has been enriched through sponsorship, we witnessed how Hunter’s life, and that of his family, will be forever changed as well.

Hunter shares some gifts he brought for Rony and his family. The gifts ranged from new shoes to a soccer ball.

Hunter shares some gifts he brought for Rony and his family. The gifts ranged from new shoes to a soccer ball.

            As a storm rolled in off the Caribbean Sea, we said our goodbyes. There were some tears, many hugs, and dozens of thank-you’s exchanged. The next day Hunter left for the U.S. and Rony returned to his village outside of Ocotepeque, but neither of them (nor us) will forget their afternoon together in Tela.



  1. Wow! I love to read your stories. You write so well and each and every adventure is exciting to read. This story gave me goosebumps. You should be proud of all that you are giving to so many different people. I admire your work and you for doing it. Keep having fun!!!

  2. Brenda,
    It’s good to hear from you. Thanks for the encouragement. We are having a great time and learning a ton. I’ve been thinking of you and the rest of the department since it’s about time for school to begin. Tell everyone I say hello. Talk to you later.

  3. just found the card that has your website….sounds like you guys are doing great and more importantly doing great things! not sure if you are keeping up Bart and Annie, but….the Royals still stink, Brett Favre is a New York Jet and Michael Phelps won eight gold medals! Keep up the great work we are all very proud of you!

    Mike, Diana, Julie, and Matt (the other Dallas Family)

  4. Okay, another beautiful story from abroad. I love it. I love you guys and love that you are there. Isabel had a great first day of Kindergarten. It is so wonderful to see the faces of children as they begin a new adventure in their lives. She was just beaming, and so serious when her teacher Mrs. Dawson gave them an assignment. She also made a new friend, Emily who had a blue dress on and a pony tail. Monday begins the first full week of school and Isabel is really looking forward to that. Enjoy that little puppy. Love you guys.

  5. What an amazing experience for everyone! As I sat in my office reading this story and looking at the pictures, I literally had to hold back the tears. Thank you for sharing this! I look forward to hearing about the next adventure.

    I also have to ask… Did the dramamine work out for Bart this trip? I felt so bad for you after hearing about the car sickness.

  6. Texas Haake’s!
    It’s good to hear from you. Thanks for the update on the Royals (Annie’s still loyal), Brett Favre (my condolences D’Antuono family), and Michael Phelps (impressive!). We hope you are all surviving another Texas summer. Keep in touch and thanks for the nice comments.
    -Annie and Bart

  7. Isabel, Charlie, and parents,
    We miss you guys so much. We loved your kindergarten pictures, Isabel. We know you’ll be a great student! Check out the video of the puppies on our main page. Talk to you soon.
    Love, Bart and Annie

  8. Hey Sarah,
    It’s great to hear from you–another Camp Wood alumna. Thanks for checking out our website. The dramamine has done wonders for Bart during our long trips. No more carsickness! I hope you’re doing well. Are you still in New York? When Bart and I get back we should call a camp reunion and get everyone together for a weekend in the fall or spring. Take care and keep in touch.

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