Well summer has once again arrived and that means that I am once again out on long haul trips. These are fantastic to do and allow me to see a lot of the country that I would not normally get chance to do.
This year I headed out to Denver for a mission trip with Holy Redeemer Church out of Marshall. They left Saturday night and myself and another driver met them at 2am part way down the road. This was to make sure that we would make it and still be inside our 10 hour driving limit for the day.
For the first part of my drive I was in a massive storm. Winds blowing like crazy and dealing with rain and, for a short while, hail. The kids managed to sleep through it all though and only woke when it was time to stop for breakfast.
A few of them were surprised when they woke up to find someone else driving the bus and most of them were happy to see me as I have driven this group before. After the breakfast stop we made very good time to the school where the kids would be staying and unloaded everything.
The kids would spend the next week using the school as a base of operations, having breakfast and supper and sleeping in the classrooms. During the day they were assigned a into a group of about five and sent out to a work site in the surrounding area. These could vary from a persons home to a church. They would spend the day doing what ever jobs were needed in order to help out the people. In order to get them there the company in charge of the camp asked the drivers to run shuttle services for them. This brought back a lot of memories for me from my driving days in England. Wrestling a big double decker bus down roads not really meant for it. Well I got to do that all week here. A lot of the work sites that I had to go to were residential houses and a lot of the streets were very tight. The looks on the other drivers faces when I turned down their quiet street in my motorcoach was priceless. I managed the whole week without hitting a kerb or another vehicle.
The look on the faces of the people that the teams went to help was fantastic they were all a little shocked when we pulled up. I dont think that they were expecting such a large vehicle but whenever I collected a group they were always smiling and waving them off. The kids were fantastic. They always got back on the bus tired and smiling after a hard days work. At the end of the week there was a gathering of all the kids involved and they invited all the people that they did work for. A good number came and I decided to sit in and listen to what they had to say. All of them had nothing but praise for the groups that worked there. Everyone was polite and very respectful of other peoples property and did fantastic work. Decks were stained, rooms painted, siding replaced, Roofs repaired, Yards were cleared.,
I talked to the kids on the way home and they all had a fantastic time there. They worked very hard and made new friends and changed some lives. Most of them were asleep about 20 mins into the drive home.
It was a fantastic trip I enjoyed my time and I know that they did as well.